This content is sponsored by the Monsanto Fund’s America’s Farmers Community Outreach programs, but views and thoughts are my own.
My parents raised me on our family farm. I can remember caring for my animals as I grew up, early mornings and late nights either putting up hay, spending countless hours riding my horses, pulling calves or checking fields. My grandparents farm was just a few miles away on the other side of town. Keep in mind you can drive through our town in less than a minute.
Today, I live on my grandparents farm with my own family. I could never imagine my life any other way. It’s in my blood, my roots. I love everything about small town living so I was excited to be able to work with the America’s Farmers Community Outreach programs, sponsored by the Monsanto Fund, on this post to bring more awareness to their outreach programs and show how America’s farmers grow America.
Hard Work. My friends that have never known the farm life think it sounds so fun. I’ll admit, it is fun. It’s like no other life. Although it is fun and rewarding, it’s a commitment like nothing else. You wake up early to feed livestock or get in the tractor. Even though I work a full time job in marketing at home, I’m outside every hour checking the water for livestock, checking fencing, putting up hay and so on. Life on the farm never stops. At dusk we’re checking livestock again. When calving season is here we are up at midnight, 2am, 4am… making sure that one cow doesn’t have trouble. It’s a never ending cycle but when you’re up at 4am and save a calf from dying you’re glad you didn’t get those few hours of sleep. Saving that one life may mean making a monthly farm payment or fixing a repair on the farm. When you’re cold and sitting in front of the fireplace, we’re out feeding cattle or the farmers are finishing planting fields.
I’m talking about farmers that do it because they love it. Farmers that love farming. The farmers spending countless hours alongside their farmhands. These farmers consider their farmhands part of the family. They take care of one another. Most of these farmers I’m talking about either hold down a full time job or their spouses do to support the farm. They do it because they love it.
That’s my American Farmer.
My dad is the perfect example of my American Farmer. He’s worked so hard all his life. He has an insurance business but loves his farm. I don’t know how many times a day I’ve seen him meet a client, run out to jump on a tractor to finish baling a swath of hay to come back in and work until after dark. It’s these men in our life that give us pride in what we do and teach us how to raise our families.
Community Support. I’m excited that The Monsanto Fund celebrates rural communities by highlighting their innovative and altruistic nature through the America’s Farmers Community Outreach programs. This amazing, new campaign, sponsored by the programs called My Town, will continue this celebration of the people, places and stories that make small towns great. Small towns are often portrayed as rife with challenges, but, through research, it’s been found that rural communities are full of positive attributes and residents are proud to live there.
Although small, at 190 population, my town is very supportive of our community, school and farmers. Our community sticks together! The heart of our community is the school and farmers. We take pride in our rural communities and schools. Of those living in small, rural towns 95% say they have a sense of pride in where they currently live, and 96% feel that small-town innovation deserves more recognition.
I can’t imagine raising our son any other way. Our school is comprised of the northern area of our county. His class has less than twenty students… total. It’s amazing how our school has risen above the challenges and succeeded to be a top performer in the state. I guarantee the strength of our school and community has not been possible without the support of our amazing farming families. They are the heart of our community.
The My Town campaign highlights all of the elements that make up a community and a proud sense of place. The content elevates the spirit of rural America by showcasing stories of people helping their fellow townspeople, preserving the nature of their communities and living their day-to-day lives with social stewardship. These stories can come from an array of places, including local food, artisanal spirits, traditional woodworking, handmade goods and the townspeople themselves. The Monsanto Fund celebrates communities, just like ours, and invests to make them even more vibrant for future generations through its America’s Farmers Community Outreach programs.
Within the past year our community has come together to raise enough money for our school to have a football team, baseball team and raise thousands of dollars for our music department. When a fellow neighbor is sick we join together to raise funds through auctions and suppers. Recently over $40,000 was raised for a fellow farmer who was diagnosed with cancer. It truly is amazing the support one small town can receive.
Do you have a #MyTownProud story? Share it in the comments below or on social media using #MyTownProud.