Monday, December 19, 2011

Tis the Season to Serve

     It's the holiday season and everyone is busy with parties, open houses, studying for finals, and last minute shopping.  Two FFA chapters found time in their busy schedules to remember the community spirit that makes this time of year so great last weekend, and we were blessed with the opportunity to tag along.
     Rachel, Casie, Gianna, and I were all able to be a part of the Crothersville FFA Chapter's community food drive delivery.  We spent the entire morning working alongside FFA members, the local fire department, and other community members as they delivered food on fire trucks to those in need.  The chapter had been fundraising for months as well as collecting and sorting donations.  Their hard work paid off as they delivered food and toys to almost one hundred local families.  The gratitude of those who were served was clear, and the attitude of service and kindness that everyone working had was simply amazing.
    The next morning the entire team participated in the Shenandoah FFA Chapter's Snug Harbor Christmas.  This event gave around 150 local developmentally disabled adults a positive Christmas celebration.  FFA members served a meal and Santa visited to pass out presents to the incredibly happy clients.  Everyone left with smiles on their faces.
    The team and I definitely enjoyed serving alongside the Crothersville and Shenandoah chapters and seeing their willingness to serve pay off.  It was truly inspiring to see that many high school and junior high students drop their own activities and take time to improve the lives of those around them.  I hope that all of you reading this have a great holiday season with your families and remembers what this season truly is about!

Friday, December 2, 2011

The Christmas Shuffle : FIRE at the North Pole

What a week it has been for Indiana for Indiana FFA. This week the state officers and some of the employees of ISDA made their way up to Dulls Tree Farm for Trees for Troops! It was an exciting day for everyone who participated; however, some left the farm quite warm after carrying 150 trees to the wrapper.

On Wednesday the State officers traveled to Bill Estes where we gave away our Chevrolet Silverado to Mr. Mike Stigleman of Richmond, Indiana. He was very excited to receive the vehicle and looked forward to driving it!  We then continued our travels to a Cargill Soybean processing plant in Lafayette. This plant takes soybeans and extracts the soybean oil from them by crushing them then washing them in a bath of hexane that extracts the oil form the soybeans. This was an amazing learning experience for the state officer team and our Foundation Director Lisa Chaudion. Continuing our journey even further we met with Mr. Fernandez of Purdue University as well as many other staff members of the Ag department at Purdue. Later on in the evening we visited Dean Ackridge’s house where he was holding a gathering for the Purdue University Agriculture Ambassadors.

Today is our final Fall/Winter conference F.I.R.E. (Foundations In Reaching Excellence). This weekend close to 115 Junior and Senior FFA members will pile into the beautiful Indiana FFA Leadership Center for a two night and two day conference. This year our theme is FIRE at the North Pole: Melting our Boundaries. We will cover an array of topics from Role Models to Agricultural Facts Today. We are excited for the weekend and plan on having a fabulous time!!