Go Outside

The days are getting noticeably shorter. “Quitting time” arrives and many are forced to drive home in the dark. Now more than ever, it is important to go outside and enjoy the great outdoors. Being outside has many health benefits and a view like the one below might give you the nudge to go outside, even as the sunlight is drifting away.

Looking south from our Pershing Ag Center

Why Go Outside?

1. Being outdoors boosts your energy. 

Craving another cup of coffee? Skip the caffeine and sit outside instead. One study suggests that spending 20 minutes in the open air gives your brain an energy boost comparable to one cup of coffee. Breathe in, breathe out, breathe energy.

2. The outdoors is good for your vision. 

Research shows that elementary school students who spend more time outdoors are less likely to develop nearsightedness. But down that iPad and go get some fresh air! Also, they’re bound to sleep better once their head hits the pillow if they’ve spent adequate time in the great outdoors.

3. The outdoors boosts your immune system. 

Scientists think that breathing in phytoncides—airborne chemicals produced by plants—increases our levels of white blood cells, helping us fight off infections and diseases.  That’s more important now than it has ever been.

4. The outdoors provides you with free aromatherapy. 

According to science, you really should stop and smell the flowers. Research shows that natural scents like roses, freshly cut grass, and pine make you feel calmer and more relaxed. Bath & Body works may have a soap called “Fresh Sparkling Snow” but getting outside in the actual white fluffy stuff is much better for your well-being!

5. The outdoors enhances creativity. 

Do you have a writing project, church assignment or community obligation that requires your creative ideas? Getting outside gets your mind flowing and you’re bound to find new views and interesting objects all around you. Change your perspective on a walk.

6. The outdoors helps with seasonal affective disorder.  

In the winter, shorter days and lower light levels can trigger seasonal affective disorder, or sad—a reoccurring condition that’s marked by symptoms of anxiety, exhaustion, and sadness. Doctors say spending time outside can lessen sad’s severity—even if the weather’s cold or overcast.

7. Being outdoors gives you your daily dose of vitamin d.

Vitamin d is essential for a well-functioning body. It helps us absorb calcium, it prevents osteoporosis, and it reduces inflammation, among other things. Although vitamin d is present in some foods we get more than 90-percent of our vitamin d from casual exposure to sunlight.

Interview one of our many employees about their role at Harvest Land and they will tell you that being outside is one of their favorite parts of their personal role within the cooperative. Operating equipment, visiting with farmers at the farm gate and delivering product are all ways our employees keep that fresh air flowing.

Now, quit reading this an go outside!

Southern Preble County No Longer without Life-Saving Equipment

This week Harvest Land donated a grain rescue tube to Gratis Fire Department, located in southern Preble County, Ohio.

The grain tube will be added to their rescue equipment, while a grant is in the works to get a grain vac to help remove grain from a person trapped inside a bin.

Lt. Bryan Bowling stated, “We hope we never have to use it, except during training exercises, but we are very grateful to receive this. Prior to the donation, the closest one was in Gasper Township, over 15 minutes away.”

Gratis FD
Pictured right to left: Nikki Bulach, Harvest Land Associate Risk Manager,  Lt. Bryan Bowling, head of technical rescue team, Assistant Chief Patrick Caplinger, Lt. Jason Vincent, and Captain Jim Kolonis. 

The Gratis Fire Department is an all-volunteer fire department, consisting of 45 volunteers from the local area. Within the fire department’s jurisdiction, there are approximately 50 grain bins, either privately owned or small businesses, with more grain storage being added.

To date, Harvest Land has donated nine grain rescue tubes and three rope rescue kits throughout our trade territory as part of our ongoing commitment to Cultivate Communities.

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Hunger Knows No Season

On this week of Thanksgiving, Harvest Land and Land O’Lakes partnered to donate $2,000 to the Monthly Food Ministry organized by the Centerville United Methodist Church in Wayne County.

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We made a similar donation in 2018 during the warm summer months, but when the church reached out and said more and more families are in line every month and the need was again great, we knew we must help because hunger knows no season. 

Who Will This Donation Serve?

Since their first Monthly Food Ministry in September of 2017, the number of families they support has steadily increased. In 2018, they averaged 65 families a month, but in November of 2019, 91 families came through the door to receive assistance.

FOODBANK

They purchase food for the food ministry from Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana and buying food for approximately 65 families costs around $1,000 per month. The vast majority of that cost has come from the faithful contributions of the members and friends of the Centerville United Methodist Church, but as their assistance numbers go up, so do costs to Gleaners. It only makes mathmatical sense that they must budget more dollars per month to purchase food from Gleaners, so our $2,000 contribution helps to fill that gap.

2019 Donation
Jared Martin, Harvest Land CFO, (front right) presents the check on November 25 at the church. 

The church keeps no record of where the families they serve come from as they want a completely open food ministry, but they do know that families are coming from Cambridge City, Pershing, Richmond, and elsewhere.

So, Where Will $2,000 Go?

100% of the $2,000 will go to purchase food from Gleaners for future Monthly Food Ministries. The food that the food bank pays for from Gleaners includes canned goods, boxed items, and other items that can be stored on the shelf.  Occasionally, Gleaners offers MotherEarthNews_FallVegetableHarvest_Oct_20131meat and dairy products (milk, butter, eggs, yogurt), but they are limited right now by refrigeration and are currently in the process of creating a “cold room” in the church food room.  This project should be finished sometime in December.  They also get produce from Gleaners, but produce is usually provided at no cost. While Gleaners is their main source of produce, it is not their only. They also get produce from local growers, the Amish auction in northern Wayne County, and the Community Garden at the ARC Center in Richmond.

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Have Food, Will Travel

When necessary, the Monthly Food Ministry will deliver, and every month there is at least one family that needs transportation. They revealed to us that last summer a lady and her two daughters walked a great distance from a trailer park to receive food. Rather than make her carry two or three heavy boxes/bags back on a busy highway, they loaded her up in a pick-up truck and transported her, her daughters, and her food back home.

Too often the food ministry group hears, “I don’t know what I would do without this food.”  Almost all of the folks receiving food are overly grateful for the assistance.

We’re proud to partner with Land O’Lakes to provide this hunger relief assistance in the Centerville area this holiday season.

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