Agriculture is part of our daily lives-from the food we eat to the clothes we wear. On Saturday, nearly 670,000 FFA members across the country began to share the story of agriculture as part of National FFA Week.
Whether it is through service projects or community gatherings, National FFA Week is a time for FFA members to raise awareness about the role the National FFA Organization plays in the development of agriculture’s future leaders and the importance of agricultural education.
National FFA Week always runs Saturday to Saturday and encompasses Feb. 22, George Washington’s birthday. This year, the week kicks off on Feb. 16 and culminates on Feb. 23.
The National FFA Board of Directors designated the weeklong tradition, which began in 1948, in recognition of Washington’s legacy as an agriculturist and farmer. A group of young farmers founded FFA in 1928, and the organization has been influencing generations that agriculture is more than planting and harvesting – it involves science, business and more.
Today, FFA provides the next generation of leaders who will change the world. The top school-based youth leadership development in the nation, FFA continues to help young people rise up to meet new agricultural challenges by helping members develop their unique talents and explore their interests in a broad range of career pathways. FFA members are our future leaders, our future food-suppliers, our future innovators and so much more!
National FFA Week is a time for FFA members to share agriculture with their fellow students as well as their communities. Chapters also give back to their communities through service projects during FFA Week. For example:
*During FFA Week the Abernathy FFA in Texas will be partnering with the Hub City Outreach Center to make sidewalk chalk that will then be donated to the summer program that focuses on reaching out to at-risk youth at the center.
*In Ohio, the Ohio Valley CTC FFA chapter will be working with Adams County Soil and Water to create a program to educate students and community members on the proper disposal of used oil and fluids.
*In Iowa, the Roland-Story FFA chapter is partnering with Meals on Wheels in packaging and providing meals for the elderly who are in need.
*Peterson Academies Technology FFA is focusing on literacy during FFA Week, by teaching mothers to read to their babies at an early age. The chapter will provide pamphlets on the importance of early literacy and then will donate gently used books to the University of Florida Health to distribute at a local event.
During FFA Week, the six national officers will visit chapters across the country. Western Region Vice President Shea Booster will visit Arkansas; Adrian Schunk, eastern region vice president, will visit West Virginia; Ridge Hughbanks, central region vice president, will visit Iowa; Jordan Stowe, southern region vice president, will visit South Carolina; Layni LeBlanc, national secretary, will visit Washington; and National FFA president Luke O’Leary will visit Connecticut.
National FFA Week is also a time for alumni and sponsors to advocate for agricultural education and FFA. On Tuesday, Feb. 19, the National FFA Foundation will celebrate Give FFA Day, a 24-hour campaign encouraging the public to support various needs impacting FFA members. If interested in giving, one can visit FFA.org/giveffaday. On Thursday, FFA Alumni and Supporters will celebrate Alumni Day. Friday, Feb. 22, all FFA members and supporters are encouraged to wear blue and show their FFA pride!
Sponsored by Tractor Supply Company, National FFA Week will be featured on social media as well. Follow the #FFAweek hashtag on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and don’t miss @NationalFFA Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat posts, including posts from the National FFA Officer Team while on the road.
The National FFA Organization provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through agricultural education to 669,989 student members who belong to one of 8,630 local FFA chapters throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The organization is also supported by 459,514 alumni members in 2,236 alumni chapters throughout the U.S.
Bill to modernize FFA charter clears Senate, House
The U.S. Senate approved a measure to modernize the National FFA Federal Charter Tuesday afternoon, moving the bill one step closer to becoming law and paving the way for needed updates that will allow FFA to build for the future.
Of the nearly 100 federally-charted non-profits, FFA is the sole organization that must rely on its partner government agency to select the majority of its board members. H.R. 439, the National FFA Organization’s Federal Charter Amendments Act, reforms how FFA’s board is selected to better reflect the broad array of stakeholders invested in the organization. The bill also gives FFA’s charter an explicit focus on agricultural CTE, which will help better prepare student members for 21st Century careers.
H.R. 439 gained approval in the Senate less than two weeks after passage by the House of Representatives. The identical Senate version of the charter bill was introduced by Sen. Todd Young (R-IN) and co-sponsored by Senators Doug Jones (D-AL), James Lankford (R-OK), Christopher Coons (D-DE) and John Hoeven (R-ND).
The bill now requires approval by the president to become law.
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