Willard FFA: Service and Excellence

Willard FFA: Service and Excellence

August 23, 2022 in Volunteer Spotlight

“Volunteering is at the heart of all FFA chapters,” James Asher shares. Asher is the National FFA sponsor in Willard, Missouri. “If you look across the state, or even on a national level, you’ll see FFA out there volunteering. We like to do a service-based project for the community; it brings out the best in our students.” In addition to other volunteer efforts, the chapter he leads gives an entire day of volunteering to Ozarks Food Harvest each month.

The National FFA is a youth organization dedicated to preparing young people for leadership and personal growth through agricultural education. Willard’s FFA group has a long history – boasting an active chapter since 1932.

Asher is particularly proud of his students. They exemplify the FFA motto: Learning to do, doing to learn, earning to live, and living to serve. He explains, “They are hard workers who like to have fun, but they WILL get the job done.” That’s a fact. Indeed, they excel at getting a job done. During one visit, they cleared out every donation in our entire dry-storage area, which is an impressive feat and has never been done by a volunteer group before.

Within the FFA there is a focus on developing its member’s potential through hands-on experiences. So, it’s easy to see why volunteering with The Food Bank is a great fit. It makes sense that these hard-working and dedicated young people are interested in the entire food system – beginning with agriculture and ending with food distribution to those in need.

“There’s satisfaction in knowing that we’re helping others, students even. It means a lot to us to know that there are people in Willard who may be receiving aid. At the end of the day, even though we’re tired and sweaty, we have a sense of accomplishment. It makes us feel good to know that we’re helping. That’s a big part of our FFA chapter.” Asher says.

He says they focus on many things, from agricultural education to community service, from being polite to applying yourself. Then they put them into practice through their participation in events and volunteerism, whether it’s with Ozarks Food Harvest or adopting part of a highway to care for and clean. If their work at Ozarks Food Harvest is any indicator, that must be an exceptional stretch of road.

Ozarks Food Harvest is so proud to be partnered with this extraordinary group of young people who donate their time to helping their community. If you’d like to be a part of our volunteer family, check out the opportunities we have available here.