Manitoba Ag Days gives back to the communities where their exhibitors and visitors come from (MB & SK) through community grants and scholarships. Last week they awarded $50,000 through 17 community grants, one grant to a provincial organization, and 3 student scholarships.
The Ag Days Gives Back program raises funds through their 50/50 draw that takes place each year throughout the 3-day show. 100% of funds raised through this draw are used to support K-12 ag education, post-secondary ag education and community organizations throughout Manitoba, as well as Saskatchewan.
This represents a commitment of over $362,500 since the inception of Ag Days Gives Back!
The 17 Community Grant recipients represent each quadrant of the province and includes a wide variety of types of non-profit organizations. Each recipient was awarded $2000 towards the completion of their project.
"In past years, those projects have been targeted, but in the 2024 round those grants were wide open to any non-profit organization," explains Media Coordinator Teresa Hildebrand. "So, it wasn't targeted to a specific type of organization. For instance, in the past we have targeted daycares, or fire departments. But, in 2024 that was open to any non-profit, and you'll see through the list that we have a huge variety that includes everything from hockey rinks to food pantry service programs."
Three students were awarded $2000 scholarships this year, an additional $1000 from last year's individual awards.
- Briana Rathwell - University of Saskatoon
- Rylee Olafson - Lakeland College
- Blake Artz - Assiniboine Community College
"We were able to increase the amount of each scholarship and we were also able to expand the criteria to any post-secondary education or training that was related to agriculture," shares Hildebrand. "So, we had a wide variety of applicants in all different areas of agriculture which was really great to see, because ag is really a diverse area and uses lots of different skills."
As well, the committee was able to award $10,000 to Agriculture in the Classroom Manitoba with the Education and Leadership Grant. 'This supports their programming which brings students to Brandon to have an agricultural experience for the day!"
In addition to the $50,000 awarding that took place last week, Ag Days has donated directly to the Keystone Centre by purchasing additional, Ag Days has also donated funds to the High School Rodeo Association held in Brandon each year.
"This just speaks to that reinvesting into communities, which is what Ag Days is all about," adds Hildebrand.
Please listen to more with Teresa Hildebrand below!
Recipients of the 2023-2024 Ag Days Gives Back ~ $2000 each:
- Sara's Pantry Food Service Program - Glenboro (Purchase top ten requested foods)
- Erickson District Recreation Association (Repaint and refinish interior arena baseboards)
- Cypress River Ag Society (Run the 'King 'Farmer' competition at their ag fair)
- Oakburn Community Hall Committee (Bathroom renovations to create an accessible bathroom)
- Westman Mental Wellness & Suicide Prevention Association (Host celebrity ball hockey tournament and community day, incl mental health speakers)
- Neepawa & Area Fire Department (Purchase equipment to combat electric vehicle fires, in which traditional car fire methods do not apply)
- Roseland South Brandon Community Center (Mold removal and repainting of the walls)
- Ste Rose Recreation Commission (Development of an accessible, multi-use trail system- Phase 1)
- Ste Rose Hoof N Holler Days (Purchase an outdoor event tent with walls)
- Glenella Curling Rink (Painting of the ice surface)
- New Beginnings Daycare (Purchase of educational materials related to ag such as ag story books and gardening supplies)
- Mossey River Municipality (establishment of the Edible Tree Park, including benches, trees, flowers and planters)
- Norfolk Treherne Fire Department (Purchase ropes, helmets and harnesses to implement grain rescue training)
- Torquay Community Centre (ice plant repairs)
- St Jean Volunteer Fire Department (Purchase battery operated hand tools)
- Hanover Ag Society (Fund the Rough Stock School)
- Arborg Minor Hockey (Purchase of a scoreboard and sound system for the rink)