BRUNO — Bruno farmers Michelle and Brian Hergott are sponsoring 40 acres of land to grow grain for Grow Hope Saskatchewan.
Grow Hope Saskatchewan is a program under the Canadian Foodgrains Bank, which is a charity partnership of 15 church and church-based agencies with the mandate of addressing hunger in developing countries.
“That kind of comes through in two ways primarily, one is short term immediate needs, which is emergency food response,” said Rick Block, Canadian Foodgrains Bank Saskatchewan Regional Representative.
“The second way we work is a little more on the upstream kind of angle and that’s working with largely, the term would be, ‘small holder farmers’… typically it’s very resource poor farmers who do not own land, maybe rent or only own a little bit of land.”
The Hergott family are one of four families sponsoring their land for the program in the province. They run a third generation grain farm.
“For years Brian has been saying, ‘You know, it would be really great if we could help others in a greater way, and this just fits us like an answered prayer,’” said Michelle Hergott. “We’re farmers, this is where our expertise lies: in growing crops.
This is their second year sponsoring 40 acres.
“We liked supporting it last year,” she said. “With COVID-19 hitting the need is probably greater than ever before.”
It costs about $300 per acre to provide seed, fertilizer, fuel and other inputs.
After harvest, the farmers will sell the crop and donate the proceeds to Canadian Foodgrains Bank (CFGB).
The proceeds from the sale of the crop can be up to $500 per acre. The federal government matches funds up to four to one, resulting in matching up to $2,500 per acre.
Last year 122 acres were sponsored. This year there are a total of 305 acres available to be sponsored.