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August 26, 2013

FFA chapters earn prizes for community service projects

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Five Indiana community service organizations have been recognized for projects that help improve the lives of people with disabilities.

The projects were part of the Bridging Horizons Community Service Contest, sponsored by Indiana AgrAbility, Breaking New Ground at Purdue University and DuPont Pioneer. The contest is an opportunity for community service organizations, such as FFA chapters, 4-H clubs, Junior Leaders and Girl/Boy Scouts to help community members overcome physical barriers.

"This year's participants completed some significant projects in their communities," said Kylie Hendress, AgrAbility engagement coordinator. "From building sidewalks and ramps for public buildings to helping plant gardens and making raised garden beds, each of the projects made a substantial contribution to its community."

The Carroll Fort Wayne FFA chapter won first place, with a $500 prize, for a project in which members designed and built a community garden at a local disability outreach center. They built two accessible picnic tables, two wheelchair accessible garden boxes, two ground-level garden boxes and two benches with planter boxes.

The Sullivan FFA won second place, with a $250 prize, for building a wheelchair ramp at the Sullivan County Fairgrounds grandstand area. The members also put in a concrete sidewalk leading up to the ramp so visitors no longer have to travel through loose gravel to get to the grandstands.

The Jay County FFA in Portland took third place and received a $150 prize for improving the accessibility of the vocational facilities at a local high school. The project was a new sidewalk that connects the agricultural buildings, providing students in wheelchairs or on crutches easier access to their classrooms.

There also were two honorable mentions. One went to the Center Super Stars 4-H Club of Howard County for replacing the main entry door to the 4-H LEAD Center in Greentown from a manual door to an automatic one. The other recognized Girl Scout Troop 6203 Cadettes for completing several indoor and outdoor projects at a local health clinic.

Information about the 2013-2014 contest is available at www.breakingnewground.info/horizons. The deadline for the contest is June 1.

Writer: Jennifer Piotrowski, 765-494-8402, jpiotrow@purdue.edu

Source: Kylie Hendress, 765-494-6679, khendres@purdue.edu

Ag Communications: (765) 494-2722;
Keith Robinson, robins89@purdue.edu
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