At the GROWMARK/FS Services exhibit during the Farm Progress Show this past week, Illinois Agriculture in the Classroom received the latest in a long line of generous contributions to their efforts from the GROWMARK Foundation.
Amy Bradford, who manages the foundation efforts, says they contributed another $70,000 this year as part of an annual donation to help improve ag literacy in the state. “We’re closing in on a million dollars giving to Ag in the Classroom and ag literacy initiatives,” said Bradford. “We think that it is one of our responsibilities to help expand that reach and tell agriculture’s story.”
Accepting the big check was Susan Moore, director of the IAA Foundation and primary fundraiser for Illinois Ag in the Classroom. “It means so much to our program,” she said. “Not just the amount of the check, but the passion behind it from GROWMARK and the consistency of their contributions. They’ve been supporting the program for 20 plus years and to have long term partners is really what helps us.”
Illinois Ag in the Classroom education director Kevin Daugherty says last year they reached over 31,000 teachers and more than 550,000 students. “We are using agriculture as a springboard to teach math, science, social studies, and language arts,” said Daugherty. “Ag literacy is targeted at our pre-K through 12 level – and we’re education about agriculture, not ag education.”
Listen an interview with Amy, Susan and Kevin here: GROWMARK Foundation Ag in the Classroom contribution