BATH — The FFA corduroy jacket is more than part of Official Dress. To its owner, the FFA jacket is a physical reminder of the personal accomplishments achieved through the organization —a symbol of hope and belonging for all who wear the corduroy.

An FFA jacket has the power to fill members with confidence, a sense of hope for their future and provide them with a physical piece of belonging to a community they love, FFA. It unifies members in a long-standing tradition. Let’s give every member the chance to be part of the tradition. The SD FFA Foundation Blue Jackets Bright Futures FFA Jacket Program is helping carry forward that long-standing tradition of pride, dignity and honor, by providing jackets for members to earn through a short essay application.

Each year, thanks to donors like you, students know what it’s like to be welcomed in the FFA family. "Putting on that blue corduroy jacket with your name on for the first time is something you never forget," says Sandy Osterday, S.D. FFA Foundation president. "Whether it's zipping up your jacket for the first time, seeing a mob of 60,000 blue jackets wandering the streets at National FFA Convention, or proudly hanging your jacket in the closet after an event, each FFA jacket holds a lifetime of memories and accomplishments. We want every SD FFA member to have that experience, if your FFA jacket still holds fond memories for you, we invite you to sponsor a jacket."

This school year South Dakota will have 99 FFA chapters, more chapters than ever before. When students join the FFA, they typically purchase or borrow jackets to compete in the many Leadership and Career Development Events offered through FFA. The jacket is their team "uniform" to be worn at all official FFA events. In 2020 more than 460 members applied for a jacket through the Blue Jackets program. With the continued growth of agriculture education and FFA programs, we expect the need to continue to grow.

If you feel compelled to support the Blue Jackets campaign and provide for our leaders of tomorrow, donate by Sept. 15 online at: http://sdffafoundation.org/; mail sponsorship to: SD FFA Foundation, 39393 133rd St., Bath, SD 5742, or contact Gerri Ann Eide, SD FFA Foundation Executive Director at 605-765-4865 or gerri@sdffafoundation.org.

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