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Our Impact

2020 Weekly Highlights

May 22, 2020 - Burning the Midnight Oil

It's been a very productive week for our assistance efforts and that is a direct result of the hard work and dedication of our volunteers. If you've read any of our prior weekly updates, it may seem like we do an awful lot of bragging about our Angels in Blue. That's only because they deserve it! These amazing individuals are the lifeblood of our work and we relish any opportunity to talk them up. They devote some very long days (and often nights) to assist farm and ranch families in crisis, and never ask anything in return. They're here to help, plain and simple. So, if you're looking for some uplifting news and positive stories in today's crazy world, look no further than Farm Rescue. 

Crew number 1 spent much of their week near Bowbells, ND planting soybeans for a farmer who's currently receiving treatments for liver cancer. After a good shot of moisture delayed their start, they made some great progress and have now begun the journey to Sharon, ND. Their plan is to seed several hundred acres of wheat and soybeans for a farmer battling throat cancer. Crew number 2 made the most of their cooperative weather and seeded more than 1,600 acres in 6 days, with another 200+ miles of roading the equipment. They began their week near Elgin, ND, wrapping up some oat acres for a farmer who was injured in an ATV accident. From there, they headed East to New Salem, ND to plant beans for another farmer who sustained a broken leg and ankle in a 4-wheeling accident. After that, they crossed the border into South Dakota to seed wheat near Lemmon for a farmer dealing with an illness. They've now moved back to Hoven, SD, to resume planting beans for a farmer dealing with a heart condition. With the window soon closing on planting season, we hope to keep up the pace and help a few more families in need. A big thank you goes out to John Deere Seeding Group in Valley City, ND and Gooseneck Implement in Lemmon, SD for all your help in keeping our equipment running strong in the field! Another sincere thank you goes out to the amazing volunteers serving as our boots-on-the-ground to fulfill our mission, including Mark Baumgarten, Ken Enstrom, Heidi Kjono, David Frueh, Albert Lautenschlager, Kenneth Chyle, Emil Baranko, Jeff Preston, Paul Zierke, Mike Youngblood and Greg Kalinoski. You're all heroes in our book!

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann, Marketing Communications Officer


May 15, 2020 - Social Distance Assistance

The year 2020 has definitely been one for the history books. As states struggle with decisions to reopen businesses and loosen some of the current COVID restrictions, Farm Rescue and our volunteers have been trying the best we can to operate in the usual fashion. Of course, a few changes have been implemented to keep both our assisted families and Angels in Blue as safe as possible. That means frequent sanitizing of equipment and tools, maintaining distance from one other and using masks whenever working in close quarters. So far, our volunteers have adapted well and still find ways to have fun with it all, but I think one of the greatest challenges has been the limited interaction with the families they assist. Farm Rescue has always been a conduit for handshakes and hugs, so it seems a bit strange to witness a distant wave or an elbow bump between such friendly and caring individuals. There's still a tremendous amount of gratitude shown for the work Farm Rescue is doing, but we definitely look forward to the day when hugs make their long-awaited return! It's been another wet week for portions of the region, with some additional rain and even snow in parts of our service area. Crew number 1 wrapped up their wheat planting near Lambert, MT for a farmer recovering from a stroke. From there, they made the long journey to Bowbells, ND to seed soybeans for a farmer currently receiving liver cancer treatments. Rain and snow preceded their arrival, so the next volunteer crew is currently en route to pick up the reigns when conditions improve. Crew number 2 began the week in Hoven, SD, but wet conditions there prompted a change of plans, as well. They've now moved near Elgin, ND to plant a few hundred acres of oats for a farmer who was injured in an ATV accident. The plan is to return to Hoven once things dry out, with a few other stops scheduled along the way. Our volunteers have covered a lot of ground, thus far, with many miles and acres ahead! As always, we want to thank all of those who make this mission possible, especially this week's Farm Rescuers in the field:  Tom Meyer, Ron Donohue, Garry Deckert, Mark Baumgarten, Ken Enstrom, David Frueh and Albert Lautenschlager. 

Until next week,

Dan Erdmann, Marketing Communications Officer


May 8, 2020 - Some Rain, Some Gain

There's no such thing as a perfect planting season, and that is proving true once again in 2020. After a solid start to our assistance efforts, crew number 2 experienced its first big rain delay of the year. Seeding work was already underway near Hoven, SD to assist a farmer dealing with heart issues, when nearly two inches of rain fell in a 24-hour period. That was enough to halt progress for a few days, but things seem to be drying out and our volunteers are anxious to get back in the field. In the meantime, crew number 1 has had better luck and is burning the midnight oil to make use of the cooperative weather. They began their week near Belfield, ND to plant some canola acres for a farmer battling cancer. From there, they headed northwest to Lambert, MT to assist a farmer recovering from a stroke. Both teams have done some amazing work and covered many miles and acres, thus far. Another group of volunteers is poised and ready to pick up the torch and continue our mission in the coming week. We feel so blessed to have such a capable family of do-gooders to serve as our boots on the ground in assisting farm families in need. A huge thank you to this week's Farm Rescuers in the field: Garry Deckert, Albert Lautenschlager, Mike Youngblood, Greg Kalinoski, Tom Meyer and Ron Donohue. We are honored to have you all!

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Marketing Communications Officer


May 1, 2020 - Rays of Hope

With so much uncertainty in the world at the moment, it's especially comforting to be back in the field planting the first seeds of 2020. Something about this time of year always brings a renewed sense of hope to so many and what could be better right now? Things may be far from normal, but we feel truly blessed to be carrying out our Good Samaritan mission to the best of our ability. That's all thanks to our dedicated volunteers, who have been putting in some long days to sow the seeds of hope for farm families in crisis. Crew number 1 spent a few days this week near Regent, ND to plant wheat for a farmer who was injured by one of his cows. They've now moved West to Belfield, ND to plant a few hundred acres of canola for a farmer battling cancer. Crew number 2 started the week planting wheat near Linton, ND for another farmer receiving cancer treatments. A new batch of volunteers are now headed to the Hoven, SD area to assist in seeding soybeans for a farmer dealing with heart issues. So far, the weather has been relatively cooperative (except for some light showers) and we pray that trend continues. Sometimes weather delays do make for some amazing photo opportunities, however. Just another reminder that storms don't last forever and beauty is more easily appreciated once they've passed. We can't extend a big enough thank you to our Farm Rescuers in the field for carrying out these assistance efforts, including Garry Deckert, Albert Lautenschlager, David Frueh, Larry Leier, Mark Benson, Bob Miller, Mike Youngblood and Greg Kalinoski. 

Until next week,

Dan Erdmann - Marketing Communications Officer


April 24, 2020 - On the Road Again

Welcome to Farm Rescue 2020! We feel truly blessed to continue our assistance operations for another year, and that's all thanks to our amazing family of volunteers, donors, business sponsors and the many others who support our mission. To say it's been an interesting start to the year would be an understatement. The COVID-19 pandemic has much of the world in disarray, including many businesses and nonprofits. Farm Rescue is definitely navigating some uncharted waters, but our board of directors, full-time staff and volunteer workforce are taking the necessary precautions and updating protocols to ensure operations can continue as safely as possible. Unfortunately, that means many of our out-of-state Angels in Blue will be missing out on some of their annual planting assistance work, but everyone has been very understanding in the current situation. We hope some of the quarantine rules and travel restrictions will be lifted soon to allow more of our long-distance volunteers an opportunity to serve with our organization once again. Thankfully, many local Farm Rescue volunteers are stepping up to assist farm families in their area.

If things weren't strange enough amidst the pandemic, we also had our first harvest assistance case of the year... in the month of April. Due to wet conditions extending through the fall of 2019, many crops were left standing throughout the winter months. We were honored to assist a farmer near Valley City, ND with his remaining corn harvest after he suffered a broken leg. Most recently, our Field Operations Manager, Luke Benedict, and several local volunteers have been prepping our seeding equipment for the long weeks ahead. Today, Crew 1 is en route to our first planting assistance case near Regent, ND, to assist a farmer whose abilities have been greatly hindered by a broken arm. Crew 2 will be working near Linton, ND the next few days to plant a few hundred acres of wheat for a farmer battling cancer. More assistance cases are on the schedule for the coming weeks and we'll be praying for more cooperative weather than 2019 had to offer! Special thanks to our most recent Farm Rescuers in the field - Garry Deckert, David Frueh, Mark Benson, Larry Leier, Albert Lautenschlager and Luke Benedict. Another big thank you goes out to the amazing business sponsors who provided parts and services to ready our equipment for the season ahead, including John Deere Seeding Group, Leading Edge Equipment, Green Iron Equipment, Langdon Implement and True North Equipment. We couldn't accomplish this mission without you!

Until next time, stay safe and God bless!

Dan Erdmann - Marketing Communications Officer

FEATURED SPONSOR

FARM RESCUE SPONSOR - CHS Inc.

FEATURED VOLUNTEER

FEATURED VOLUNTEER - Lee Van Ruler

FEATURED RESCUE

Farm Rescue 2019 - New Salem, ND