By RockN W Report Intern, Paige Brandon
Photos via Roxanne Wellman
So you’re scrolling through Instagram, noticing pictures of hard-working cowboys and cowgirls. You start yearning for a day where you could ride off into the sunset or rope calves to brand. Maybe you start to wonder where your food comes from, or ways you can become involved in your ranching community. Here are a few ways that you can do that!
- Join FFA. FFA, also known as Future Farmers of America, is an association dedicated to teaching and promoting the agricultural industry. There are many aspects of the agriculture world, and FFA helps students to explore those aspects, such as farming, ranching, agriscience, and more. If you are too old to join FFA, you can volunteer for the organization.
- Join 4-H. 4H is an international organization that is known for teaching young kids about their agricultural community. It helps students to gain leadership roles and become involved in their community. If you are too old to join 4-H, you can volunteer.
- Volunteer at rescues. Reach out to a local rescue to get hands-on experience working with different animals. Depending on the rescue, there can be all sorts of animals there, including horses, livestock, dogs, cats, etc. This is a great way to help out and learn!
- Work for different ranches. Many ranches look for help. Depending on the job, previous experience is not needed. This allows you to get an inside view of how a ranch works!
- Go to your local library. Your local library should have documents of the different ranches surrounding your area. They should have maps of property lines, old deeds, the brands to each ranch and more. You can learn the history of the ranches in your area!
- Go to the county meetings. Multiple farm and ranch issues will be brought up at these meetings. You will have the opportunity to learn the issues that can burden the ranching/farming community, as well as the solutions that are offered to fix these.
- Take lessons with a trainer. Reach out to a local horse trainer to take lessons from. Not only will you be around horses and learning, but you can also meet other people with similar interests.
- Go to a local livestock show. You can keep an eye out for flyers or announcements of local livestock shows. You can talk to the judges afterward to get their insight into what they look for in the animals they are judging. This is a great way to see livestock in action, as well as see what is being looked for in livestock at ranches.
- Go to your county or state fair. Most county or state fairs have exhibits showing off the work put into ranches, the agricultural industry and more! They also have exhibits of livestock animals that you can see up close!
- Take an agriculture class at a college. Many colleges offer a class based on agriculture. This is an amazing way to learn more about where your food comes from, what you can do in your community to help out and more!