Ag gives back this holiday season |

Ag gives back this holiday season

Consider donating books to Tri-State Livestock News' 'Reading on the Ranch' Christmastime collection project. Books can be mailed, hand-delivered or ordered online. They will be given to local schools including those in Sundance, Belle Fourche, Newell, Faith, Hettinger, N.D., and others to be distributed as needed to elementary students. Husker the Mule and Levi's Lost Calf (pictured here) were donated by local authors Codi Vallery-Mills and Amanda Radke. Staff photo

With Black Friday and Cyber Monday in the rearview mirror, it’s time to enter into a spirit of reflection, gratefulness and generosity as Christmas draws near. It comes as no surprise that the agricultural community is giving back in big ways this holiday season. Here are a few charitable organizations and fundraisers happening in rural America.

Rural America has suffered from many natural disasters, fire, hurricanes, drought on top of just normal farm accidents and hardships. Cowboy Christian Connection is joining forces with many artists and nonprofit organizations such as Montana Cowboy Ministries, Giving Back Foundation, and Americas Cowboy Review and others to raise funds to help the ranching and farming communities and invite you to join us to take a vital leadership role as well.

Lending a helping hand is a normal in rural American, and a practice we should employ every day. These organizations, partners, not only want to help with these disasters but also those who we don’t hear about on national TV or on the radio, possibly your next door neighbor.

In response, this December we will be working at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas to bring national attention to our “Help They Neighbor” Fundraiser to directly help those who have experienced hardship and may have not received any form of aid or assistance.

Cowboy Christian Connection

6455 N Union Blvd Suite 100A

Colorado Springs Co 80918



• Beef Bucks, Inc. & South Dakota Highway Patrol

Once again, Beef Bucks has teamed up with the South Dakota Highway Patrol to offer support to law enforcement families in need. The donation of Beef Bucks, which can be used to purchase beef at grocery stores, restaurants and qualified retailers, is gifted by Beef Bucks, Inc. a non-profit organization located in DeSmet, S.D. The South Dakota Highway Patrol assists in identifying those families who could use some help this holiday season. To donate to this cause, check out or call 1-888-640-MEAT.

• Cattlemen’s Ball of Nebraska

 Consider gifting tickets to family members, employees and friends this holiday season for the upcoming Cattlemen’s Ball of Nebraska, which will be held on June 1-2, 2018 in Hebron, Neb. and will feature a performance by country music singer Trace Adkins.

The 2018 Cattlemen’s Ball will be hosted by the beautiful Hergott Farm near Hebron, Nebraska.


The event focuses on promoting beef in a healthy diet, showcasing rural Nebraska and raising money for health care research. Purchase tickets for the event here:

• Riding for Dreams

Located in Lisbon, N.D., this non-profit organization offers equine therapy for special needs children and adults with riding lessons. One of the only Therapy Riding Programs in North Dakota, the program was started by three women who are working to expand throughout the state in order to benefit more individuals. To learn more about equine therapy and to donate to this program, check out

• Empty Saddle Memorial Foundation (ESMF) 

A non-profit organization created as a way to honor the loss of Neal Hermanson at the age of 23, ESMF seeks to honor and memorialize the lives of lost horsemen whose character was developed and shaped through the unique bond between horse and rider. Based out of Sidney, Mont., ESMF has provided the community with more than $33,000 in medical aide and scholarships. To nominate a loved one, contact Ned Hermann at 406-480-7424 or to mail a donation, send checks to ESMF, 1136 14th St. SW, Sidney, MT 59270. Learn more at

• Chase Hawks Memorial Association

Honoring the loss of six-year old cowboy Chase Hawks, who was killed in a tragic accident in 1994, this non-profit organization seeks to help families in crisis with financial assistance during their times of need. The organization has provided fuel for families to drive sick children to Denver, built wheelchair ramps, collected clothes and household items for fire victims, secured airline and bus tickets for medical travel, covered funeral expenses and even provided Christmas toys for families in crisis. To learn more and donate, go to

• STEER, Inc.

Based out of Bismarck, N.D., STEER is a Christian non-profit organization that connects faith-filled donors to ranchers, with funds being used to buy and raise livestock to fund mission trips to teach people about the gospel. To donate or to get involved as a missionary or dedicated rancher, check out

• South Dakota Cattlemen’s Foundation (SDSF) Prime Time Gala 

This annual event promotes beef, highlights South Dakota ranchers and raises money for Feeding South Dakota. A night of great food, exciting entertainment and an auction for a good cause, consider purchasing a table of tickets for your crew. For more information, check out and make plans to be in Sioux Falls, S.D. in June. 2018.

• Farm Toys For Tots

In 2016, the agricultural community came together to purchase toy semi trucks from Walmart after vegans called for the store to ban the “livestock slaughter trucks.” The group raised more than $5,000 to purchase these trucks for kids in need. While the campaign isn’t continuing again this year, Farm Toys For Tots is still encouraging folks to gift farm-themed toys to the original program to help bring some Christmas cheer to kids in need this season.

• All-American Beef Battalion (AABB) 

With troops deploying overseas this holiday season, now is the perfect time to consider buying a soldier a steak. The AABB was started by Vietnam veteran and Kansas cattleman Bill Broadie as a way to promote beef and say thank you to the troops. Since its inception in 2007, AABB has served more than 325,000 ribeyes to men and women serving our country. Support the organization with a donation and learn more at

• Yellowstone Boys and Girls Ranch

Located in Billings, Mont., this non-profit organization is a leader in mental health care for children and their families. Working with nearly 600 youth throughout Montana who struggle with controlling emotions and behaviors, the Yellowstone Boys and Girls Ranch teaches life lessons on the farm with emphasis on respect, stewardship, responsibility, faith, hope and integrity. Learn more at

This is not a complete list of the ag-based charities doing good deeds throughout the region this holiday season, but it’s a start. Consider supporting one of these non-profit organizations to help those in need this Christmas.