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Monsanto Fund-sponsored program gives back $45,000 to Texas fire departments

Oct. 16, 2012 at 5:16 a.m.


Rural communities have a fire death rate twice the national average, according to the U.S. Fire Administration and National Fire Protection Association. Firefighters in these communities are also often less likely to have the necessary firefighting equipment and training. To help combat these challenges, the Monsanto Fund is investing in rural fire departments and helping to keep farming communities safer through America's Farmers Grow Communities.

Grow Communities gives eligible farmers the chance to win a $2,500 donation for their favorite area nonprofit organization. Last year, the largest percentage of Grow Communities funding was directed to regional fire departments. The Monsanto Fund invested a total of $612,500 in 245 rural fire departments across the country.

Texas received $45,000 for 18 fire departments, including: Bee County Fire Protection Association Inc.; Ganado Volunteer Fire Department and Woodsboro Volunteer Fire Department.

For the third consecutive year, Grow Communities is gearing up to distribute $2,500 donations in 1,271 eligible counties across the country. Now through Nov. 30, farmers can apply online at growcommunities.com or call 1-877-267-3332 to apply by phone. To date, more than $7 million has been invested in rural America through Grow Communities.

New this year, community members can suggest a fire department or other nonprofit organization that is in need of funding on the Grow Communities website. Farmers can review "planted ideas" and consider them in their application. To submit a nonprofit project idea that needs funding in your community, visit GrowCommunities.com by Nov. 30.

As a result of the worst drought in 50 years, more than 700 of the 1,271 Grow Communities counties have been declared natural disaster areas by the USDA. Winning farmers from these counties will have the opportunity to direct an additional $2,500 donation to a second nonprofit of their choosing to assist with community needs that have surfaced due to the drought. The Monsanto Fund will select one winner at random from each of the eligible counties and announce winners in January.

For more information about this program and to view the official rules, visit growcommunities.com.

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