America's Farmers Grow Communities Earns Local Support

Philanthropy at work: Drought-stricken farmers and rural communities receive double funding.

Published on: Mar 15, 2013

The Ashley Community School and Gratiot Community Foundation will now be able to better serve the community, thanks to the support of local farmer, Brenda Crumbaugh, and America's Farmers Grow Communities.

Sponsored by the Monsanto Fund, the philanthropic arm of Monsanto Company, Grow Communities provides farmers in eligible counties the chance to win a $2,500 donation for a local nonprofit organization of their choice.  To further support counties declared natural disaster areas by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) due to the drought this year, winning farmers in these counties are able to direct double donations, a total of $5,000.

Gratiot County was declared a disaster area by the USDA, giving Crumbaugh the opportunity to choose two organizations to receive $2,500 donations. Crumbaugh selected the Ashley Community School and the Gratiot Community Foundation.  The Ashley Community School would like to repaint its gym, add a security camera and lock to the main entrance, and would like to contract for a smart phone app that will keep parents connected with the school. This donation will go to supporting all three of these projects.

Local Farmer Supports Gratiot County through Americas Farmers Grow Communities
Local Farmer Supports Gratiot County through America's Farmers Grow Communities

The Gratiot Community Foundation will add this donation to the Gratiot Community Fund at the request of Crumbaugh. This is a permanently endowed fund that generates grants to support a broad range of quality programs improving the quality of life for all residents.

"This makes me feel wonderful to do something for my community," Crumbaugh says.

This year, the Monsanto Fund will invest nearly $6 million in rural America through Grow Communities, which includes double donations for counties impacted by the historic drought.

In Michigan, $185,000 is being given across 37 counties.

America's Farmers Grow Communities is sponsored by the Monsanto Fund to partner with farmers in helping them positively impact their communities. This program is part of the Monsanto Fund's overall effort to strengthen rural America.

For a complete list of Grow Communities winners and more program information, please visit