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Local chapter plans for National FFA week

Wednesday Feb 19, 2014 - FFA helps shape the leaders of tomorrow and prepares them for more than 300 career opportunities.

To honor and recognize the organization’s contributions, the local chapter will be celebrating National FFA week, which began Saturday, Feb. 15 and will run through Saturday, Feb. 22.

“National FFA week is going to occur all week … and it’s focusing on informing not only our school and our students, but also our community about the FFA and what the ag program really is,” said FFA President Cheyenne Osborn.

The officers outlined their plans during a Tuesday, Feb. 11 meeting of the Lassen Union High School District Board of Trustees.

Activities will include providing teachers with facts about agriculture every day, setting up FFA displays in the school library and at Plumas Bank, hanging posters around campus and handing out FFA magazines to local businesses.

FFA is partnering with Susanville Supermarket IGA and members will be handing out ag facts and Tootsie Pops to customers Wednesday, Feb. 19 and Friday, Feb. 21. And, in appreciation to teachers’ for their support with students missing class to attend FFA events and competitions, members will be delivering breakfast one morning.

In addition, FFA members will be participating in Rotary’s Purple Pinkies program, where for a small donation, polio vaccines are provided to different countries. Those who donate will have their pinkies painted purple.

Designated as National FFA Week in 1947, the week of George Washington’s birthday is FFA Week, and runs from Saturday to Saturday. The national FFA organization provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through agricultural education to approximately 580,000 student members in grades seven through 12 who belong to one of 7,570 local FFA chapters throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

Osborn asked one question, “Where would we be without agriculture?”

Her response received some laughs from the board and audience, “Without agriculture, we’d all be naked and hungry. ”

Community service

The FFA officers also took the opportunity to highlight the chapter’s community service projects and student accomplishments.

FFA Vice President Ginger Miller said, “As a chapter we believe that community service is extremely important, especially to show the community what we do and how important they are to us, because without them we obviously wouldn’t be as strong as an organization.”

In December, students donated money and FFA was able to match the amount and provide gifts for three children on the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree.

More than 85 Christmas cards were delivered to residents in Country Villa Riverview, members rang the bell for Salvation Army and partnered with Operation Christmas Child by filling shoeboxes with items for children living in impoverished countries.

According to Miller, they planned to fill seven boxes, but ended up sending 25.

Twenty-three FFA members also participated in a trail cleanup near the Susan River and Riverside Drive.

Keenan Graham highlighted the students who completed their state degree, which he described as a very prestigious award.

Those students are Madison Rausch, Ashley Miller, Mason Downing, Cassidy Taylor, Heather Fortin, Clareissa Barr and Stuart Mallery.

Former Susanville FFA members Hannah Fortin and Danielle Wood, both students at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, have applied for and are waiting approval for the American degree.

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