‘Give a man a fish and they eat for a day. Teach him how to fish and you feed him for the rest of his life.’ It’s an Italian proverb that rings true today.
Lone Oak Middle School and Reidland Middle School were awarded $15,000 from the Bayer Fund for green house improvements and outdoor learning spaces through it’s Farmers Grow Rural Education Program. Having opportunities to teach students the importance of sustainability is a golden opportunity in today’s climate.
COVID-19 has severely affected distribution and production of food across the globe. The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World estimated that 690 million people went hungry in 2019. They are estimating that 130 million more people will go hungry due to the coronavirus pandemic. The hungry are numerous in Asia but spreading quickly throughout Africa.
In the United States, a reported 38 million Americans went hungry including 11 million children in 2018. The coronavirus pandemic has left millions of families without stable employment and the expectation for 2020 is to see numbers climb by 40%. That translates into 54 million people without enough food, including 18 million children.
The Farmer is considered an essential worker and The Bayer Fund recognizes their contribution. The Fund acknowledges the importance of passing the torch to future farmers and other related fields.
In early 2020, the Bayer Fund called on local farmers to nominate rural public school districts to compete for grants to enhance their science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education programs. Thanks to nominations from local farmers, McCracken County Public Schools was able to compete for and win a $15,000 grant.
The winners were chosen by a panel of math and science teachers and about 30 farmers from across the country. The America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education program has awarded more than $57 million to rural schools across the country, including a $10,000 grant to Heath Middle last school year, and now $15,000 to LOMS and RMS this school year.
LOMS and RMS will split their $15,000 prize to make updates to their existing greenhouses and create outdoor learning spaces, which will be especially useful this school year. More information about The Bayer Fund can be found on their website: americasfarmers.com