CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Nov. 29, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — On the heels of Giving Tuesday, a global day dedicated to generosity and giving back, Farm Aid announced today that it distributed more than half a million dollars in grant funding this year, investing in organizations working to build resilient systems of agriculture and food. In 2017, Farm Aid has granted $732,351 to 83 family farm, rural service and urban agriculture organizations in 34 states and the District of Columbia, as well as to more than 60 farmers and youth for leadership development and advocacy. Farm Aid also made grants to 297 farm families for emergency and natural disaster relief.
“Thanks to the continued generosity of supporters from across the country, today Farm Aid sends critical funds to hardworking organizations who share Farm Aid’s mission,” said Farm Aid President Willie Nelson. “Farm Aid grants strengthen the family farmers who are working to stay on their land and knit communities together by providing healthy food and an economic bedrock for rural and urban communities.”
In 2017, Farm Aid invested funds in programs that:
Build and strengthen infrastructure for local and regional food systems and raise awareness of their value; Enhance access to good food in impoverished communities by building relationships between family farmers, youth and low-income consumers; Recruit and train beginning farmers and increase their access to farmland; Help farm families stay on the land with legal support, business planning, financial assistance and counseling; Support farmer transition to organic, sustainable and regenerative farming techniques; Build and support resilient systems of agriculture in the face of climate change and increasing patterns of extreme weather; Confront corporate concentration in agriculture and ensure competitive markets by advocating for fair farm policies on behalf of all family farmers; Address antitrust and contract violations; Strengthen the grassroots around a unified vision for our food and farm system; and Build an effective farmer voice in advancing food system reform.
“With the 2018 Farm Bill quickly approaching, it is critical that family farmers are organized and their voices are heard,” said Executive Director Carolyn Mugar. “We are honored to partner with grassroots organizations that build resilient systems of agriculture to combat the impacts of natural disasters and climate change; work for fair policies that work for family farmers and eaters; fight discrimination in our farm and food system; protect our soil and water; and ensure everyone