This month’s Mercer Savings Bank Giving Mission recipient is the Ft. Recovery Local Schools FFA program. With 150 students in grades 9-12 involved, the program is one of the largest and most active in the area.
More about Ft. Recovery FFA
FFA is an organization for high school students that exposes them to a number of agriculture-related career paths as well as leadership involvement opportunities. Students take classes in school as well as participate in numerous activities and programs outside of the classroom.
“Future Farmers of America” was founded by a group of young farmers in 1928. Their mission was to prepare future generations for the challenges of feeding a growing population. They taught us that agriculture is more than planting and harvesting – it’s a science, it’s a business, and it’s an art,” according to the National FFA Organization’s website.
Classes include animal and plant sciences, woodworking, and welding. Students also host several fundraiser programs throughout the year, including the popular community fruit sale and summer food stands at tractor pull events.
Each February, the group also celebrates National FFA Week with fun activities to involve the community and student body, including a petting zoo, community breakfast, and Ag Olympics.
“Our big focus is that it is a place for kids to belong,” said Michael Gower, one of the two FFA advisors at Ft. Recovery. “Yes, they want to join and have fun with members that have their similar interests. But they also come to this program for the leadership, the public speaking experiences, and a host of other things. They come to the program for lots of different reasons.”
Gower noted the Giving Mission funds will likely be put toward the cost of sending students to skills competitions in the spring.
“The FFA program here at the school has been a place that lots of kids want to belong to,” he added. “It’s very popular.”
Getting Involved in the FFA Program
A common misconception is that FFA is only for students who want to be farmers or pursue a similar career. In reality, it’s a program that a wide variety of students can join and benefit from.
“So today, we are still the Future Farmers of America. But, we are the Future Biologists, Future Chemists, Future Veterinarians, Future Engineers, and Future Entrepreneurs of America, too,” says the National FFA Organization’s website.
Community members who would like to support the program can do so in numerous ways, from attending events to participating in fundraisers held throughout the year.
Visit the Ft. Recovery FFA’s website page to learn more.