The early-October blizzard, so powerful it has been named "Atlas," was devastating to many ranch families in Western South Dakota. Tens of thousands of head of livestock were lost in the storm. Losing all or part of the herd that you -- and your family for generations before you -- has worked so hard to build up is a deep emotional blow. From an economic perspective, the ranchers will be facing a very difficult time in the weeks and months ahead as they decide how to regain their footing and rebuild.

We at South Dakota Farm Bureau have established The "South Dakota Farm Bureau Cares" Fund to help ranchers impacted by the blizzard.

About the Fund:

 Our fund is designed to help ranch families impacted by the blizzard with immediate financial needs: cash for groceries, utility bills, or whatever they feel would be helpful to their family and household. In speaking with many of the ranch families, they are worried about immediate family needs like buying groceries and paying utility bills.  The storm came right before they were going to sell calves, so the need for cash for these immediate family expenses is real.  These are not people who are going to ask for help, but with winter and the holidays coming up, the financial need – and emotional stress – are mounting.  Farm Bureau is a family, and we created this Fund so we could step up for these ranch families now in these weeks following the storm.

We truly believe Farm Bureau is a "family," so Farm Bureau member families will receive first priority when the funds are distributed. County Farm Bureaus in the affected area West River will submit names and needs to South Dakota Farm Bureau, and those in need will receive funds by check.

 The Fund will remain open beyond November, but we hope to have the bulk of the donations collected by November 22 so that the total may be announced during our SDFB 96th Annual Meeting -- and so that the funds may be distributed shortly thereafter.

How it works:

  • 100% of your donation will go directly to ranch families impacted by the blizzard.
  • The "South Dakota Farm Bureau Cares Fund" has been set up at Farmers & Merchants Bank in Huron, SD.
  • Donations are tax-deductible.

Make a donation

  • In order for the donations to be tax-deductible, make your check payable to:  Farmers & Merchants Bank / S.D. Farm Bureau Cares.  Send checks to:  South Dakota Farm Bureau, Post Office Box 1426, Huron, SD 57350
  • If people would like to donate online using a debit/credit card, visit, where there is a link on the homepage titled “Donate to the S.D. Farm Bureau Cares Fund for ranch families in need.”