Bozeman, MT:  Last week, thousands of pounds of fresh beef, pork, goat, and lamb were donated to 33 food banks and community kitchens throughout central Oregon. The Fay Ranches Community Foundation in conjunction with the Hicks Team of Fay Ranches Land Brokerage partnered to purchase animals through the 4-H and FFA livestock auctions. The animals purchased went to the 1017 Project that supports communities facing food insecurity by providing high-quality protein.

According to the USDA, more than 38 million people, including 12 million children, in the United States face food insecurities. Recovery from the pandemic’s economic disruption is expected to take three to five years. Fresh food donations have plummeted across the country leaving many families hungry and without alternatives. Food banks in rural America were already desperate for donations, and without food to distribute, some were forced to close their doors.

Jerry Hicks said, “We feel strongly about supporting both the Fay Ranches Community Foundation and the 1017 Project. First, the 4-H and FFA livestock market animal sale; nothing speaks louder to the farm and ranch family network and community than being able to support these young future farmers and ranchers by buying their market animals. It’s very rewarding having each of these kids come up to you during and after the market sale and say, ‘thank you for purchasing my animal.’ The second phase of this effort is then donating the high-quality meat back to the 1017 Project. Since 2014, the 1017 project has developed an amazing distribution network that supplies meat (mostly hamburger) to over 40 food banks, kitchens, and churches from Texas to Oregon and has supplied over 300,000 pounds of meat to these wonderful groups that are putting hungry families first. Our leadership this year at the market animal sales led to participation from numerous other donors. WE ALL WIN!”

Executive Director, Susan Ferrin, said “the Foundation aspires to make lasting change in these vital rural communities. To make a generational impact we need to address the underlying challenges of increasingly limited resources. Working with the Hicks family and programs like the 1017 Project we can begin to see how with passion and dedication, lives can be changed and transformed by all of us coming together.”

About The Fay Ranches Community Foundation:

The Fay Ranches Community Foundation was founded to combat the lack of resources and opportunities in small towns across the country. They are dedicated to helping rural America by focusing on improving the quality of healthcare, education, and youth resources. By focusing on these areas, they strive to increase the well-being of residents and the economic prosperity of towns. Providing sustainable resources to rural America has a significant impact on the communities as well as a domino effect on the rest of the country. The Foundation is driven to make certain residents have the tools and means they need to build a better life for themselves and their families whereby creating a legacy for their hometown and this nation.

The Fay Ranches Community Foundation envisions a future where families choose to live in rural America, where they have access to quality education, healthcare, and growth prospects. Providing resources and opportunities for these communities will truly change lives. For more information on how you can contribute to the cause, visit www.faycf.org.

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