I have a neighbor who is in his 80s and several years ago he planted a grove of walnut trees. Now that is faith and foresight. I am sure he is not planning on reaping the benefits of those walnut trees unless he has somehow found the fountain of youth. The trees have done quite well, and they have grown very fast for walnut trees but at a conservative guess I will say they are 50, 60 maybe even 100 years away from someone gaining economically from them. That is a crop that requires a great deal of patience.

That kind of forward thinking makes me marvel at the sacrifice my neighbor is making for the sake of a future generation. Those acres could be planted to crops or at least mowed for hay, but instead he has decided to plant those walnut trees to benefit someone a generation or two or maybe even four down the road. Someday someone he does not know will benefit greatly from the hard work he is putting in today. In many ways this is like our Kansas Farm Bureau Foundation.

Sure, our Foundation is funding things now. Things like financial help to counties sending members to the Young Farmers and Ranchers Conference or helping to feed those who are hungry in our own communities. That is important but what our Foundation will do in the future is even of greater importance. It will ensure that our counties will have access to funds to promote agriculture, aid in operations of the county Farm Bureau and better the lives of our members.

That is why it is so critical that all of us as members contribute to the Foundation. I know money is tight and ag prices have seen better days. Believe me I know, and I feel your pain. Any gift is appreciated, and all gifts go toward doing important work locally and statewide. I am also aware there are many organizations and causes vying for our limited dollars, but what is more important than to ensure that we continue to have a strong and vibrant Kansas Farm Bureau?

I am asking that you look at donating to the Kansas Farm Bureau Foundation or the Kansas Farm Bureau Legal Foundation now because, if you haven’t noticed, it is already mid-August, and the end of the year is right around the corner. I know many of you are already planning for the new year and wrapping up this past year. I also know that this is the time many of us make charitable contributions, and I would ask that you look at a donation one of our foundations.

Think of it like planting a grove of walnut trees without all the back-breaking labor and years of watering. You can watch the funds in the Foundation grow, all the time knowing that someday the next generation of Farm Bureau member will benefit.