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Arkansas Farm Bureau donates $50,000 to Ronald McDonald House

Arkansas Farm Bureau’s Women’s Leadership Committee, Young Farmers & Ranchers Committee and the Arkansas Farm Bureau Foundation announced they have donated $50,000 to the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Arkansas to help offset projected shortfalls as a result of COVID-19. This new donation is in addition to a $50,000 donation from the Foundation and Women’s Leadership Committee in May.

ArFB has a lengthy history of support for the Ronald McDonald House, which provides a “home-away-from-home” for more than 38,000 families sent to Little Rock for life-saving medical care for their child. The Women’s Leadership Committee annually provides a food donation to the Ronald McDonald House, and was a major contributor to the construction of the new facility in 2016.

“Our relationship with the Ronald McDonald House goes back more than 20 years,” said Magen Allen of Bismarck, chair of the ArFB Women’s Leadership Committee. “They’ve seen a significant drop in donations during the COVID-19 pandemic, so we wanted to build on our previous support during this time of great need.”

For this donation, the Foundation and the Women’s Leadership Committee were joined by the Arkansas Farm Bureau’s Young Farmers & Ranchers Committee, because several members had strong interest in supporting the charitable organization.

“Our family has a close connection to Arkansas Children’s Hospital and Ronald McDonald House,” said Lauren Lee, YF&R Committee member from Faulkner County. “Our middle daughter was born with a severe heart condition. We were fortunate to live close enough to drive back and forth during her surgery and recovery time at Arkansas Children’s Hospital, but
many families we met did not have that luxury. The Ronald McDonald House provides stability to families in a time where there are many unknowns. I’m so proud of Arkansas Farm Bureau’s dedication and generosity to organizations like Ronald McDonald House.”

“We are extremely grateful for this second generous gift from our longtime friends and partners at Arkansas Farm Bureau. It comes at a challenging time and will help us continue to provide all the things families need while they are staying with us at the Ronald McDonald House,” said Janell Mason, executive director of the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Arkansas.

ArFB’s Women’s Leadership Committee plays a vital role in the mission of the county and state Farm Bureau organizations through community-based activities and programs involving Ag in the Classroom, farm tours, commodity promotion, safety, health and agricultural policy. The Young Farmers and Ranchers program provides opportunities for young men and women to actively participate in county and state Farm Bureau organizations and events, develop leadership skills, network with fellow farmers and earn recognition for achievements in agriculture, business and leadership.

The mission of the Arkansas Farm Bureau Foundation is to further the understanding of agricultural and rural issues, and to support the agriculture and rural community through financial support for education, research, litigation and disaster relief.

The Ronald McDonald House in Little Rock is a 32-bedroom “home-away-from-home” that provides housing and services to over 1,200 families each year who are sent to Little Rock for medical care for their critically ill or injured child. The Ronald McDonald Care Mobile is a 40-foot, state-of-the-art mobile unit that provides free, full-service dental care and education to children who would not otherwise have access to dental care. The Ronald McDonald Family Room at UAMS is a 2,000 square foot space in the center of the NICU that provides a place for families with a critically-ill baby to stay together.

Arkansas Farm Bureau is a private advocacy organization of almost 190,000 families throughout the state working to improve farm and rural life.