This year has undeniably been a year of unity in the ag community — from the start of the Plains wildfires last spring, we saw farmers and ranchers rally around one another in a show of support and outreach. That has continued through the year and has brought us to Hurricane Harvey, which slammed into Texas as a Category 4 storm, causing unprecedented flooding in the state. Cotton crops were decimated, livestock had to be rushed to safety. Even now, Harvey lingers as a tropical storm.
The obvious question is: How can I help?
State of Texas Agriculture Relief Fund
Called the STAR Fund, money from this Texas Department of Agriculture program is used to assist farmers and ranchers in rebuilding fences, restoring operations, and paying for other agricultural disaster relief in the wake of events such as Hurricane Harvey. Visit this page to donate to the fund, and if you’re a farmer or rancher in need, you can apply for STAR Fund assistance here.
Texas Agricultural Education Disaster Relief Fund
Texas FFA has set up a Disaster Relief Page, where people can donate to the Texas Agricultural Education Disaster Relief Fund. This fund helps FFA chapters and agricultural education programs rebuild following natural disasters such as Hurricane Harvey.
Texas Farm Bureau Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund
Texas Farm Bureau’s relief fund is sending 100 percent of donations to farmers and ranchers. The organization also has supply point locations listed on its page and is updating it new locations are established.
Alltech’s Hope After Harvey Relief Fund
Alltech is donating $20,000 to kick off the relief fund and will then match all donations made to its 501(c)(3) nonprofit, the Alltech ACE Foundation.
American Red Cross
This well-known and prominent organization is accepting donations related to Hurricane Harvey. You can also text HARVEY to 90999 to donate $10.
If you are considering donating to a group you haven’t heard of before or to a fund that isn’t administered by a reliable source, please check out the list of legitimate charities on Charity Navigator to make sure that you’re not getting scammed.
“Farm and ranch families worked around the clock to harvest crops and move livestock and equipment of their own and of their neighbors to escape Harvey’s reach,” said Texas Farm Bureau President Russell Boening. “Some crops remain in the field, though, and it’s too early to estimate the amount of crops that have been lost to the storm.”