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$212K Awarded in General Use Grants

For Immediate Release


Nora Nolden, Communications Consultant

[email protected] or (651) 245-6804



Compeer Financial Awards $212K in General Use Grants

35 Grants Given to Organizations in Compeer Territory


Sun Prairie, Wis., (August 23, 2023)  Compeer Financial’s Fund for Rural America, the giving program of the Farm Credit cooperative, has granted a total of $212,521 through 35 General Use Grants. These grants support initiatives and organizations that enhance agriculture and rural America, aligning with Compeer Financial’s mission. The grants will directly impact the lives of 216,800 people and will touch 3.2 million lives. 

Since its establishment in 2018, the Fund has awarded 402 General Use Grants to community organizations, totaling over $2.3 million. The Fund will once again offer this grant again in November 2023 to provide funding for 2024.  

“The General Use Grant Program makes a difference in the communities where Compeer Financial clients and team members reside and work, reflecting our commitment to enriching agriculture and rural America,” said Karen Schieler, Senior Corporate Giving Specialist at Compeer Financial. “Many of the supported groups through this grant initiative will directly benefit farmers, promote agriculture or aid local efforts to address food insecurity. This grant is integral to our organization’s dedication to the farmers and communities we serve.” 

The General Use Grant Program is supporting 35 organizations within Compeer Financial’s territory, including:


  • Advocate Good Shepherd hospital on behalf of Smart Farm: acquiring a food preparation wash station.
  • Artisan Grain Collaborative (with fiscal sponsorship): developing and implementing a consumer-focused grains education and marketing toolkit. 
  • DuPage County Farm Bureau: launching the "Grow Your Own Food" program for 4th grade students.
  • Elizabeth Community Ambulance Service: obtaining new manikins for community CPR courses.
  • Greater Chicago Food Depository: securing a commercial-grade reach-in cooler.
  • Illinois Stewardship Alliance: providing support for farmer-led local food caucuses.
  • Junior Achievement of Central Illinois: delivering program services, materials, and curriculum to schools in rural central Illinois.
  • Main Stay Therapeutic Farm: offering specialized equine and animal-assisted, as well as adaptive gardening, programs.
  • Rural Schools Collaborative: implementing "ROOTed in Place" agricultural and environmental projects for 8th graders at Platteville, Wis. Middle School, K-12 students at Spring Grove, Min. Public Schools, and K-8 students at Waltham, Ill. Elementary.
  • Think Regeneration: establishing a storage structure for food at Run-A-Way Buckers.


  • AURI: upgrading anaerobic digester
  • Catholic Charities of the Diocese of St. Cloud: adding a box truck and freezer unit for senior dining meal deliveries
  • Children's Museum of Southern Minnesota: developing agricultural exhibits and programming - "Plant, Grow, Harvest, Eat!"
  • Faribault Farm Safety Collaborative: providing farm safety training and safety equipment for farmers
  • Feeding Our Communities Partners: offering hunger relief services to k-12 youth in south-central Minnesota
  • Kasson-Mantorville Community Education: constructing an outdoor learning structure for nature-based education
  • Martin County EDA: offering a festival and event management online course for event professionals in Martin County
  • North Shore Healthcare Foundation: introducing simulation manikin training technology and on-the-job training for EMTs, CNAs and medical assistants
  • Second Harvest Heartland: acquiring new walking pallet jacks
  • Second Harvest North Central Food Bank, Inc.: supporting start-up costs for the home delivery program
  • University of Minnesota Foundation: developing programs to raise awareness and provide education about Minnesota’s farming communities - Grow North
  • Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning: upgrading high tunnels for improved performance


  • AgrAbility of Wisconsin: enhancing online resources
  • American Farmland Trust: helping new farmers access protected agricultural land
  • Campus Harvest, UW-Eau Claire: adding a freezer and trucks for food storage
  • Farmers for Sustainable Food: training farmer leaders in media and presentations
  • Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin: adding electric pallet truck equipment
  • Fondy Food Pantry: introducing new battery-powered pallet trucks
  • Good Neighbor Clinic of Sauk Prairie: supporting farm worker care
  • New Day Advocacy Center: establishing a healing garden
  • Operation HELP: providing farmers market vouchers for low socioeconomic families
  • Shepherds Baptist Ministries DBA Shepherds College: teaching skills for independence and horticulture careers to students with IDD
  • The Community Table Inc.: ensuring supplies for daily meal program
  • Western Wisconsin Health, Baldwin Community Hospital: expanding birth center and medical surgical units at hospital
  • Wisconsin Badger Camp: acquiring manure spreader for improved facilities


About the Fund for Rural America
The Compeer Financial Fund for Rural America is the corporate giving program of Compeer Financial, structured to support Compeer Financial’s mission to enrich agriculture and rural America. Compeer Financial’s Board of Directors has dedicated one percent of annual net earnings to support the Fund’s focus areas of agricultural advocacy and development, agriculture education, cooperative initiatives, rural development and community enrichment; and youth engagement. The Fund is managed by a Board of Trustees, made up of team members from Illinois, Minnesota and Wisconsin and members of the Compeer Financial Board of Directors. More information about opportunities available through the Fund can be found at

About Compeer Financial

Compeer Financial is a member-owned Farm Credit cooperative serving and supporting agriculture and rural communities. The $30.5 billion organization provides loans, leases, risk management and other financial services throughout 144 counties in Illinois, Minnesota and Wisconsin. Based in the Upper Midwest, Compeer Financial exists to champion the hopes and dreams of rural America, while providing personalized service and expertise to clients and the agriculture industry.

Compeer Financial is the third largest cooperative of the Farm Credit System, a nationwide network of lending institutions supporting agriculture and rural communities with reliable, consistent credit and financial services. Learn more about Compeer Financial.


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