Sunday, February 21, 2010

Why I Support Food Check Out Week

I was reminded again today at church the importance of letting the Holy Spirit flow through us, and guiding us in our decisions and actions. One of the scriptures hit me in an "Ah Ha!" moment that was the reason behind my publicly recognizing and promoting Food Check Out Week.

Over the past several weeks, family farmers, ranchers, outdoorsmen, pet owners and people in general have voiced their displeasure with the factory fundraising machine, known as the Humane Society of the United States, which collects millions of dollars in the name of “saving pets,” when in actuality, less than 1 percent goes to actual animal care. What about the rest? It finds itself going into pockets of people and working to end animal agriculture in the United States through legislation and ballot initiatives and the conversion of carnivorous canines to vegetarians. This gross use of playing on people’s emotions and mis-representation of their true agenda brings to light the importance of making donations locally.

What, you make ask; does this have to do with Food Check Out Week? First and foremost, I care about the health and well being of the livestock I raise, but I also put people first. It saddens me to see organizations such as the HSUS raising millions of dollars in the name of animal welfare, just to take that money and use it to end the production of food, when we have so many people who are homeless, and hungry. I was raised to be compassionate, caring and loving towards humanity, and when I see those who are most unfortunate and in need, the children and our seniors, I do what I can to help them.

This is the reason I chose to promote Food Check Out Week by donating beef to our local senior meals program. A program that is short on funding, but always manages to provide one hot, healthy meal to senior citizens in our community every Thursday who are alone, unable to provide for themselves or are restricted to home care.

As a family ranching family we are not cash rich by any means, but we do have a resource readily available that can provide nourishment and sustenance to those who are hungry. I ask you to join me, and look around your homes to see what you have, that you too can donate to a local program and help those less fortunate, not just this week, but make it a personal goal to help locally, on a regular basis. If you are uncertain what you can do, ask God, he will speak to you. Perhaps it is offering your time to hold, play with and read to orphans, cook or deliver meals for programs.

It is not important what you do. What is important, is that you do something. I feel so much more satisfied when I know that donations I make, stay local, help local people, help my local community and did not get spent lining someone’s pocket or worse yet, were spent to stop what I do, providing food, care and love for people.

Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. 1 John 4 v7-8

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About Me

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Jeff Fowle is a fourth generation family farmer and rancher from Etna, California. He and his wife Erin and son Kyle raise registered Angus cattle, Percheron draft horses, warmbloods, alfalfa and alfalfa-grass hay. They also start and train horses for riding, jumping, and driving. Their family run ranch has incorporated many environmentally beneficial and water efficient technologies and management strategies. Jeff attended college at Colorado State University for two years and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo for four and earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Science. Following college, he worked in Washington State for a year as a herdsman for BB Cattle Company and then returned to Etna, California in 1995 to own and operate KK Bar Ranch and Siskiyou Percherons. The latter was started by his grandfather, Clarence Dudley, who devoted much of his time to the Percheron Horse Association of America, specifically to developing their youth education program.