As an Agriculture in the Classroom-Manitoba (AITC-M) volunteer since 2018, Aaron Brown has been seeking to provide students with perspectives from different sides of agriculture.

Aaron has been a frequent supporter of AITC-M as well as a prominent partner for the organization. In addition to his personal financial contributions, Aaron has also generated additional charitable donations from other individuals and organizations. On top of his financial contributions, Aaron has also made several classroom visits as a volunteer during Canadian Agricultural Literacy Month (CALM).

A Commercial Manager at ADM Agri-Industries, Aaron began volunteering after former board members and friends in the industry encouraged him to get involved. During this time, Aaron was already a personal supporter to AITC-M and provided funding to the organization through the ADM Cares program.

Having the experience of growing up on a farm in rural Manitoba, Aaron became well-versed in farming at a young age. For the past 18 years, Aaron has been working in the ag industry in a role that involves trading and logistics, including shipping and processing of agricultural products.

Through his time at ADM and childhood experiences, Aaron has acquired strong knowledge of Manitoba agriculture. Combined with his interest in ag education, Aaron’s involvement in the industry can benefit many students through volunteering with AITC-M.

“'I can take what I’m doing and make it stand out. It’s about finding ways to be interactive. ADM originates agricultural products, and is a shipper of products and crops worldwide, as well as processing food. This gives insight into a different side of agriculture,” says Aaron.

Aaron’s interest in Manitoba-specific agricultural education became activated through teaching his wife and children, both who have grown up in the city, about the agricultural industry. Showing his family his perspectives of the industry has inspired Aaron to help share this knowledge with many students. Aaron feels that it is important for students to become agriculturally literate, as it “gives insight to a big piece of Canada and our economy.”

“Certain areas and demographics may be missing this from their growing up experience.”

Having a volunteer like Aaron who not only gives his time to agriculture education, but who also is a supporter financially in what we do, is the jackpot. Volunteers who support us both through our programming, financially and share about us within the industry is so appreciated and valued. Larissa Peitsch, AITC-M Volunteer & Program Manager

As someone who works at ADM, environmental values — especially sustainability in agricultural production, technology, and practices — is critical for Aaron. He feels that AITC-M’s programs can help enforce these values in students by “highlighting Canadian agriculture and supporting regenerative practices locally, in North America, and globally. Discussion on climate change today in the media helps to spread awareness about global warming.”

“Ag can provide a lot of solutions to global warming. AITC-M sheds a positive light on ag and sustainable processes from the farm to the grocery store shelves.”

When asked about the significance of AITC-M’s programs, Aaron feels that they provide good insights into the ag industry and that they “utilize the presenters to showcase agriculture to students in an interactive, engaging way.” Aaron voiced his support for programs like Little Green Thumbs, as the learning experience “really brings that agriculture focus into the classroom.”

“AITC-M’s programs connect students with agriculture, ultimately giving students the understanding of where food comes from.”

Aaron feels that others working in the industry can give insight into the process of bringing food from farm to table. “Looking at the people involved, there are so many facets in agriculture that enhance the educational process experience. So many different perspectives, such as animal sciences, or my side, which is shipping. There are so many subjects and perspectives involved in the value chain.”

The AITC-M staff regards Aaron as a true supporter of the organization. Larissa Peitsch, Volunteer and Program Manager at AITC-M, emphasized Aaron’s contributions to the organization.

“Aaron is a true supporter of AITC-M and has been an active volunteer for many years in our CALM program, where volunteers go into classrooms and directly engage with students, sharing about their role in agriculture and helping educate them about where their food comes from.

Having a volunteer like Aaron who not only gives his time to agriculture education, but who also is a supporter financially in what we do, is the jackpot. Volunteers who support us both through our programming, financially and share about us within the industry is so appreciated and valued. We appreciate Aaron and all that he does!”

Executive Director Katharine Cherewyk also shared how Aaron’s involvement as a partner has impacted AITC-M.

“Everyone at AITC-M appreciates the tremendous impact an individual like Aaron Brown has on our organization. His personal commitment as a donor and volunteer, paired with his ability to champion corporate support from ADM — has enabled AITC-M to reach new heights. Aaron doesn't just donate — he engages, he recruits, and he advocates — weaving together a network that is instrumental to our cause. His work instills a deeper appreciation of agriculture in countless individuals, proving that passionate leadership truly has the power to transform communities. We are so lucky to have him as part of our team of ag literacy champions at AITC-M!”

Partners like Aaron are essential in developing our programs and reaching more students, something Aaron deems important. Aaron hopes that AITC-M continues to provide innovative programs and strategies to reach more teachers and students, and that “positive messaging of agriculture is the best way to highlight the history in every classroom.”

Interested in making a difference in agricultural education? Sign up to volunteer with us, or fill out our donation form!