Monthly Archives: November 2015

FFA Providing ‘Truckloads’ of Support

Corn Drives

In the mid-1950’s, an FFA chapter from Freeborn, MN took to local corn fields to ask farmers if they could pick up corn after a damaging storm. These FFA students walked the fields picking up corn; they sold this corn and donated the proceeds to Camp Courage. This very first corn drive raised $90 for camp. Since that first chapter and first corn drive, over 80 chapters have joined the “Corn Drive for Camp Courage,” and turned that $90 into a 60 year tradition and over $5.5 million donated to our camps, where children and adults with disabilities attend camp, make friends, learn new skills and have fun.

Evolution of the Corn Drive
Last year, 61 Chapters of the MN and WI FFA took part in the Corn Drive for Courage. This number continues to increase as more and more chapters learn about camp and the impact their donations have on children and adults with disabilities. There are different ways chapters can participate in the fundraiser. Some still physically collect the corn from farmers and sell it at a local grain elevator. Others set up a table at a local elevator to accept donations as farmers come to sell their corn. FFA Chapters without corn to sell conduct other fundraiser activities including other grain drives, battery drives, dessert auctions, fruit sales and flower sales.

History of True Friends, Camp Courage and the FFA

Over the past 60 years, True Friends and Camp Courage have had the great joy of working with hundreds of FFA students and advisors and these students are bright, dedicated and hard-working. The Minnesota FFA has an amazing history of philanthropy towards Camp Courage. The FFA motto is: Learning to Do, [...]

A Place for All Abilities at Camp

A recent article published by the Huffington Post, titled “My Son Has the Kind of Autism No One Talks About” sheds light on the many forms that Autism takes. “The media shows us all of the feel-good stories, like the child with autism who gets to be the manager of the high school basketball team, or the boy with autism who goes to the prom with the beautiful girl, or the girl with autism who is voted onto the homecoming court. We light it up blue every April and pat ourselves on the back for being so aware.

But we aren’t aware.

Because for every boy with autism who manages his high school basketball team, there are 20 boys with autism who smear feces. And for every girl with autism who gets to be on the homecoming court, there are 30 girls with autism who pull out their hair and bite their arms until they bleed. And for every boy with autism who gets to go the prom, there are 50 boys with autism who hit and kick and bite and hurt other people.

This is the autism that no one talks about. This is the autism that no one wants to see.”

Our amazing Program Manager, Erin LaVine, shared her thoughts about the article as it relates to camp and True Friends.
Erin L. with Camper“As someone who is one of the first to share stories of people with disabilities achieving great feats, I find this article wonderfully written and eye opening.

Each summer I have the honor of welcoming countless campers, with countless abilities to camp. I get to [...]