Tehama County Farm Bureau
Tehama County Farm Bureau (TCFB) is committed to helping our youth understand how important agriculture is to our daily lives. As Kenny Watkins, Chairman of California Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom states, “From the cotton in our jeans and the food on our tables, to our landscaped yards and playing fields, we all depend on agriculture.” It is the goal of TCFB for every child, as well as adult, in our county be given the opportunity to learn the truth about where their food and fiber come from.
On an annual basis, TCFB organizes and participates in events in our county that provide fun, educational opportunities for school age children. By organizing activities such as the fourth grade Farm Day, sixth grade Education Day at the Tehama District Fair, classroom visits and partnering with the Safe Education & Recreation for Rural Families (SERRF) program, attention is drawn to the local agricultural industry. It is one of TCFB’s goals to increase the understanding and awareness of agriculture to students. However, without the support of the Tehama County Department of Education, other agricultural organizations and venues, as well as teachers who welcome the opportunity to assist us in teaching agriculture, these events would not be such a success or possible. Some examples of our participation and events are as follows:
Classroom and SERRF visits provide hands-on activities for students in the areas of the beef industry, Tehama County tree crops, Junior Livestock projects and many more. By SERRF sites participating in the Create-A-Ewe contest for the upcoming Farm-City Celebration, not only will they learn about the importance of the sheep industry, students will also have fun creating and decorating their wooden sheep.
Fourth Grade Farm Day and Sixth Grade Education Day allow students to experience hands-on activities related to Tehama County agriculture. Whether it be watching stockdogs in action, tasting fresh olive oil, learning how agricultural products fit into their daily nutritional diet, understanding why cattle are branded and that it is not harmful to the animal, or taking their chance at roping, students gain an understanding of the variety of products raised and produced in their county. Eighth Grade Career Day is a time when eighth graders can gain a better perspective on the jobs and careers available in the agricultural industry as well as the importance of education.
TCFB feels that it is because of the lack of everyday experiences on farms and ranches that we need to connect our youth with agriculture. The students that we educate today are the future of agriculture, if not as a farmer or rancher providing our food and fiber, then possibly as a decision maker that could determine the outlook for agriculture.
Once again, Tehama County Farm Bureau would like to thank all those organizations, businesses and community volunteers who aid us on a regular basis to be sure these educational opportunities are available to the youth of Tehama County. The old saying “It takes a village to raise a child” stands true when it comes to education. We are so very fortunate that Tehama County has a wonderful village for the youth of our community.
(Kari Dodd is the Tehama County Farm Bureua Manager and Shelley Macdonald is a Tehama County Farm Bureau Board of Director and the Ag Education Chair)