In recent weeks I’ve received emails, texts and phone calls inquiring about my interest in sponsoring banners, trophies and offering cash donations for prize money for various competitions at county and state fairs and other events.

Some of those inquiries were for a sponsorship from Brownfield, and others were requesting financial support from our farm. Some were for both.

I love supporting the agriculture community. I especially love supporting young people involved in agriculture.

I do not donate to these events for the recognition. However, it is alarming to me that I rarely receive a note, text, call or verbal thank you for the sponsorship.

It is alarming to me that our society has become this lacking in manners. It is shameful.

There are those who never fail to say, “thank you.” 2019 marks the third year Brownfield has partnered with farm groups and ag businesses in Missouri in a program to raise awareness and funding for food insecure children across the state.

FFA chapters participate by packing meals that are delivered to food banks across the state. Every year, I have received handwritten thank-you cards from members of every one of those chapters letting me know how much they appreciate Brownfield’s support for the cause.

We do not sponsor Missouri’s Drive to Feed Kids for the recognition. We do it because it’s the right thing to do. Saying thank you is also the right thing to do.

I will continue to donate if I have the resources to do so. I wonder, though, how many sponsors stop giving because the recipient of the award didn’t take a few minutes to pen a note, send an email or simply say “thank you.”

There is no excuse for not teaching your children to say please and thank you. Good manners are free.

You do your children such a great favor when you teach them to say “please” and “thank you.” Teaching your kids to be polite and respectful when they are young will serve them well in future personal and professional relationships.

Of all the banners and trophies, ribbons and gift cards that I have sponsored over the years, I remember the ones for which I received a verbal “thank you” or a note.

I remember those young people, and if there is ever a time when I can help them in their 4-H and FFA careers or beyond, I will do all that I can to help them be successful in their journey.

Sadly, it’s not only the young people who fail to say “thank you” for their showmanship trophy at the county fair. Adults often fail to extend their appreciation to sponsors of various awards or activities, as well.

As we go through this county and state fair season, do yourself and your community a favor by thanking someone for donating their money, time, or skills. Not only will you make the person you thank feel better about their donation, you will set a good example for others.

Thank you!

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