More than $550,000 has been delivered to help volunteer fire departments across

the state in a matching donation program between county Farm

Bureaus and Texas Farm Bureau (TFB).

“A thin line

of volunteer firemen have made a stand to protect lives, property and livestock

as fires sparked by this epic drought continue to rampage across the state,”

said TFB President Kenneth Dierschke. “County Farm Bureaus are taking

notice—recognizing the dedication of these local heroes and offering financial

support as departments frantically scramble to repair and replace


As of Aug. 29,

county Farm Bureaus had donated $151,642.96

for volunteer fire department relief.

Matching those donations on a $3 to $1 basis – up to a maximum of $1,000

per fire department – TFB has contributed an additional $401,272 for a total of


Nearly 13,000

fires have burned more than three million acres in Texas due to extremely dry conditions since

last November.

“Many more

lives would have been endangered and much more property would have burned if not

for the commitment of these volunteers,” Dierschke said. “We are pleased to be in a sound enough

financial position to share our membership dues from across the state to support

these citizen volunteers who do an extraordinary job that many take for

granted. Farm Bureau members are

most appreciative!”

Farm Bureau

officials expect more donations as the program continues through the month of


“Farmers and

ranchers recognize the tremendous sacrifices the men and women of volunteer fire

departments make in keeping their communities safe,” Dierschke said. “Monetary

donations ensure these fire departments have funds to keep responding to

emergencies. But don’t forget a simple thank you. Be sure to show your gratitude

to these honorable public servants for a job well done.”