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Farm Aid Rallies for Farmers Hit Hard By Gulf Coast Hurricanes
Willie Nelson to Deliver Initial Relief Funds in Home State of Texas and Across the Gulf Coast
SOMERVILLE, Mass. — Farm Aid today announced that initial grants would be made to southern farm and faith-based organizations to support family farmers hardest hit by Hurricanes Ike and Gustav.
“We might not know the full extent of the damage yet, but we do know that family farmers will need our help to rebuild and to get back on the land quickly, growing good food for all of us,” said Farm Aid President Willie Nelson. “Because we’ve been working with folks for 23 years in these rural and agricultural towns, we’re able to deliver immediate support to farmers who have been devastated by Ike and Gustav.”
Southeast Texas and Southwest Louisiana have been declared federal disaster areas, and initial reports indicate that the damage to agricultural communities is devastating. Farm Aid will provide $30,000 in immediate emergency assistance for local recovery efforts. As more information becomes available about the extent of the damage caused by these storms, Farm Aid will distribute additional funds where it can best benefit farm families.
“In the face of the destruction these hurricanes have caused in Texas and Louisiana, Farm Aid is proud to work with the individuals and organizations that have already stepped up and shown their support for family farmers. Together, we will help these farmers rebuild and protect our source of good food,” said Farm Aid Executive Director Carolyn Mugar.
Farm Aid will grant $7,500 each to Lutheran Social Services of the South, Southern Mutual Help Association, Louisiana Interchurch Conference and the Federation of Southern Cooperatives.
Contributions can be made to Farm Aid’s Family Farm Disaster Fund online at www.farmaid.org/disasterfund.
Farm Aid’s mission is to build a vibrant family farm-centered system of agriculture in America. Farm Aid artists and board members Willie Nelson, Neil Young, John Mellencamp and Dave Matthews host an annual concert to raise funds to support Farm Aid’s work with family farmers and to inspire people to choose family-farmed food. Since 1985, Farm Aid has raised more than $30 million to support programs that help farmers thrive, expand the reach of the Good Food Movement, take action to change the dominant system of industrial agriculture and promote food from family farms.