Something Amazing Is Happening On This Indiana Farm

This is no longer an ordinary farm.

screenshot via HumanKind Videos
Photography

Lawler lives in central Indiana, which, he says, has more than 150,000 food-insecure people, despite being right in the heart of America’s breadbasket. “If you were to drive to [my son’s] school from here,” he said from his farm in a video from USA Today, “you would do nothing but pass farms. And there’s a kid that’s hungry there. That made no sense to me.”

This irony is well-known: “Rates of food insecurity among rural households are generally higher than urban households,” writes Feeding America, a leading nonprofit focused on solving domestic hunger issues, on its site. Due in part to lower-paying jobs, higher rates of unemployment, lower rates of education, and simple distance between rural Americans, an estimated 3.3 million households in rural America are classified as food-insecure.

Lawler decided to take matters into his own hands: His farm, an operation that successfully grows produce like tomatoes, cucumbers, and zucchini as well as raises beef and pork, ceased to be a for-profit operation. Instead he turned it into Brandywine Creek Farms, applied for non-profit status, and dedicated his farm to supplying healthy, local food to the food-insecure in central Indiana. The goal: 500,000 pounds of donated food this year.

Lawler’s gotten some significant support, as well. Richard Petty Motorsports, run by the famous NASCAR driver, will host a bowling event to benefit Brandywine Creek Farms. And thanks to the internet and social media, the options for getting volunteer effort and donations are easier than ever; there’s a GoFundMe page, you can buy a fun t-shirt, or sign up to volunteer on May 7 for this year’s planting.

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