Friday, November 4, 2011

Donations to Farm Families Hurt by Irene and Lee, Kicked off by Farm Credit East and CoBank

Dear Northeast Agricultural Leaders and Policy Makers,

Farm Credit East in concert with United Way is coordinating an effort to help farm families hurt by Irene and Lee with personal donations (up to $500 to each family) to make their holiday season a little brighter. We would appreciate your help in getting the word out to affected farm families that suffered crop losses and damage as a result of the Irene and Lee disasters. This support is for any farm family with $10,000 of crop losses/damage in designated disaster counties in New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island and New Hampshire. This is not limited to Farm Credit customers.

Farm Credit East and CoBank have both agreed to put $100,000 to this effort, so we have $200,000 to start. Farm Credit East employees are also making contributions and Yankee Farm Credit will be contributing (for the NY and NH counties that Yankee serves). United Way of the Greater Capital Region has also made a contribution. The actual amount of the grants to farm families will depend on the number of applications and the amount of total funds raised (up to $500 per farm family).
Other individuals and businesses are welcome/encouraged to make a contribution and will be recognized for their contributions in a final press release on this effort. The press release includes information on how to make a contribution to United Way for this effort – on-line or by check. This is a charitable contribution for tax purposes.

This assistance is not intended to cover business losses or make major repairs to homes and farm structures – it is intended to show “farm community concern” for the farm families hurt by Irene and Lee with the hope that their holiday can be a little nicer knowing that other folks care. In the attached release, Bill Lipinski says it better: “We just want folks to know we care and hope that they can be positive during the holidays.”

We do appreciate the on-going efforts of Northeast Congressional offices, State Departments of Agriculture, USDA, Governor Cuomo’s office and other NE state initiatives to support farmers at this time. These efforts are vital to help farms and rural communities to recover.

We are currently taking applications for this assistance – folks can apply by going on-line to The application includes more eligibility details. The application can also be found in Country Folks. Our deadline is November 26 in order that we can work with United Way to have checks received by farm families in mid-December. United Way of the Greater Capital District has been great to work with and is receiving funds and will write the checks.
Please forward this message to other organizations that may be interested.
Your efforts in getting this information out would be greatly appreciated!!!
Best regards,
Robert A. Smith
Senior Vice President, Public Affairs and Knowledge Exchange
Farm Credit East
2668 State Route 7, Suite 21
Cobleskill, NY 12043

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