Singer Neil Young was honored Friday as the MusiCares Person of the Year for his artistic accomplishments and philanthropic work with Farm Aid and The Bridge School, a California organization that assists disabled children.
A Farm Aid cofounder and board member, Young has worked for decades to help family farmers compete against Big Agribusiness.
“For 25 years, my friend Neil has been an impassioned champion of family farmers,” says Farm Aid President Willie Nelson. “He rallies concertgoers year after year at our show, and he relentlessly calls on Washington to reverse the bad policies that force family farmers off their land. He’s stubborn, passionate and persistent—just like family farmers.”
Grant Money for Family Farms
In December, Farm Aid provided $503,500 in grant money to 72 family farms and rural service organizations. The funding:
- Helps farm families stay on their land
- Builds new market opportunities for farmers and increases consumer access to good food
- Increases institutional buying of family-farm food
- Confronts the threat of corporate concentration in agriculture
- Recruits and trains new farmers
- Supports farmer-to-farmer programs for more sustainable agricultural practices
“Farm Aid is proud to support the crucial hands-on work happening all over the country to keep family farmers on the land,” says Executive Director Carolyn Mugar. “2009 has been a tough year for everyone, but farm families especially have struggled with low prices, tight credit and bad weather. These grants will help address the immediate needs of family farmers and continue to grow and strengthen the sustainable, family farm-based food system that helps us all thrive.”
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Get Some Neil!
Photo by Paul Natkin/Photo Reserve Inc. 2008; courtesy of Farm Aid