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Fighting Rural Hunger

What can FarmHers do to make sure rural families have enough to eat?

As I look forward to Thanksgiving and all of the delicious foods, I think of Callan, a young woman from northeast Iowa, who recently graduated from college as a dietician. 

She chose this path after witnessing food insecurity in her rural community, when some classmates had to steal food to survive.

The conversation was eye-opening. When I think of small-town America, I think of the land of plenty, filled with FarmHers working to feed the world. The reality is starkly different.

The nonprofit group Feeding America says 2.8 million rural households face hunger, and 86% of counties with the highest rates of child food insecurity are rural. For these families, food pantries may be hours away and living-wage jobs are scarce. 

Callan and I discussed school gardens and how they have the power not only to teach kids how to grow their own food to help themselves, but also to provide fresh produce for school lunches or to take home. Still, programs like this require funding.

Heather Dineen is the FarmHer behind The Yellow Farmhouse in Waxahachie, Texas. Her family of first-generation farmers has faced plenty of struggles, but they donated the time and resources to build a school garden and a chicken coop (pictured below). They named their project The Chicken Salad.  

Working in conjunction with the science teacher, the Dineens are sharing their love of farming and giving kids in their area the experience of growing their own healthy and nutritious food.  

While this is just one FarmHer story, it is making a big impact. One by one, school by school, and town by town, we all have the ability to make a difference. 

As FarmHers with a passion for feeding our families, our communities, and the world, we each have the ability to share our talents and help other families enjoy the delight of a full Thanksgiving table. 

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