Marshfield is dairy strong: Marshfield FFA & FFA Alumni, United Way, Nasonville Dairy, and Weber’s Farm Store work together to support dairy industry
By Hub City Times staff
MARSHFIELD – The Marshfield FFA & FFA Alumni and two area businesses are working together to supply local families with dairy products, while supporting the local farming industry.
“We’ve all seen – and some have experienced firsthand— the disaster in the dairy industry right now,” said Marshfield Agriculture Teacher and FFA Advisor Tim Heeg. “I’ve been thinking about this, and (felt) it’s time to do something here too. So I talked to Ali Luedtke at the United Way to see if there was a partnership we could do through them. She told me that they rarely supply cheese to the families that are serviced by the food bank, and they don’t supply milk to those families that are ‘homebound’ where the United Way delivers their box of food items weekly to their homes.”
Heeg and Luedtke not only set up a program to provide the 140 families – including 24 homebound – currently being serviced through Soup or Socks with dairy products, but Heeg said that the Marshfield High School (MHS) FFA & FFA Alumni were able to purchase a fridge/freezer for the United Way program to accommodate their storage needs.
“We – Marshfield Area United Way – have always loved working with Tim and his FFA group at MHS – as they were monthly lunch packers for our School Year NOW program,” Marshfield Area United Way – NOW Coordinator Ali Luedtke. “With our current COVID-19 situation and the changes we needed to make to our program this donation of milk to homebound families, cheese to all families, and a fridge/freezer to the United Way is absolutely amazing. We are always looking for cost effective ways to add more protein to our food packs and having the ability to store the product properly has always been an added need when we look at perishable items.”
Cheese vouchers will be added to Emergency Food Boxes to be used at Weber’s Farm Store
“Families and Individuals who are not able to make it to Soup or Socks during the distribution times (Tuesday and Thursday, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.) will receive their vouchers in their delivered emergency food boxes,” Luedtke added. “Individuals and families who are homebound will have their cheese and milk delivered directly to them. The United Way handles all deliveries.
“Having milk delivered to homebound families/individuals is not currently happening, due to storage of product, but due to the generous donation of a fridge by FFA alumni, we can now handle the product correctly.
“Currently with our partner program, Soup or Socks, anyone receiving an Emergency Food Box receives a voucher for milk, produce, and bread. Also, if the family has children they receive a NOW bag with a set of vouchers for milk and produce.
“Families who are homebound or out of the Marshfield School District Area – Auburndale, Spencer, Stratford, Loyal, Greenwood, and Granton – are supplied with produce, eggs, and bread weekly from Marshfield Area United Way.
“Nasonville Dairy will be our supplier of milk and cheese, with filling vouchers and supplying the milk and cheese for the United Way’s homebound deliveries.”
Heeg said that his goal is to supply the dairy products for the next six weeks.
“…getting us through the first week of June and the end of the school year, but if we have more willing to sponsor, it certainly could be, and hopefully will be, extended well beyond that,” he said.
To help support the project, monetary donations can be sent to: Marshfield Area United Way “Dairy Strong”, P.O. Box 771, Marshfield.