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Farm Credit Supports Healthy Harvest Community Garden in Halifax

Farm Credit of the Virginias (FCV), a lending cooperative that serves Virginia, West Virginia and western Maryland, recently awarded a $10,000 grant to Healthy Harvest Community Garden (HHCG) in Halifax, Virginia. The funding was made possible through the FCV Charitable Contributions Fund.

The HHCG was one of 12 organizations awarded grant funding through the FCV Charitable Contributions Fund in 2022. The charitable funding program was established as a means for the cooperative to build stronger partnerships with organizations that support farmers and families in the rural communities served by the association.

The HHCG plans to use the grant funding to make improvements to the downtown Halifax garden and broaden its community impact. Halifax County is considered a food desert, in which there is limited access to affordable and nutritious food. Using a sustainable model, the mission of the HHCG is to grow and distribute produce to community members facing food insecurity. In addition to expanding the garden by 10,000 feet, the organization plans to use the grant funds to erect fencing and irrigation, install a refrigerator and purchase seed and other materials.

The HHCG also receives support from Virginia Cooperative Extension (VCE). The local office has been integral to the growth of the garden since its inception in 2017. VCE leverages the HHCG to provide free family nutrition courses for youth and adults and lends consultation regarding vegetable production and land management. VCE Master Gardener volunteers also use the garden to provide educational classes to the public on garden-related topics.

Marie Taynham, Chairperson for the HHCG, shared, “We appreciate the generous support from Farm Credit of the Virginias in expanding the Healthy Harvest Community Garden in Halifax County. Our goal for 2023 is to reach over one thousand families with more than six thousand pounds of produce, and the grant funding from Farm Credit will certainly help us in our endeavors.”

Brad Cornelius, CEO of Farm Credit of the Virginias, said, “Farm Credit has a long-standing commitment to supporting organizations that strengthen the agriculture industry and our rural communities. The FCV Charitable Contributions Fund provides us an opportunity to build upon that commitment and provide assistance to more organizations and projects that meet this mission. We look forward to seeing the long-term impact these grants will make in our rural communities through the projects and initiatives they support, like the Healthy Harvest Community Garden.”

Applications for the next round of grant funding from the FCV Charitable Contributions Fund will be available in spring 2023. Interested applicants are encouraged to visit our website for more info, including eligibility considerations. Learn more: https://www.farmcreditofvirginias.com/charitable-contributions-fund

About Farm Credit of the Virginias

Farm Credit of the Virginias provides over $2 billion dollars in financing to more than 11,000 farmers, agribusinesses and rural homeowners throughout Virginia, West Virginia and western Maryland. Farm Credit is a cooperative capitalized largely through investments made by farmers, ranchers and the rural homeowners and businesses that borrow from them. In fact, as part of a nationwide network they are the largest single provider of agricultural credit in the United States and have been for over 100 years.  Farm Credit helps maintain and improve the quality of life in rural America and on the farm through its constant commitment to competitive lending, expert financial services and for facilitating and sharing knowledge and resources through the Farm Credit Knowledge Center. For more information, visit www.FarmCreditofVirginias.com.

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