In this season of giving, the AgAmerica team was happy to play Santa to a group of kids who need the most support
The AgAmerica team couldn’t stop with a day of volunteering for Habitat for Humanity this holiday season. Team members also participated in the Rudolph Roundup put on by Heartland for Children, an organization that helps children who are in foster home settings. AgAmerica and its employees played Santa, offering a few miracles for those who need it the most.
AgAmerica Team as Santa
The AgAmerica team sponsored 10 foster kids who made out a wish list, shared Caroline Hepler, a Credit Associate with AgAmerica. The gifts are purchased by the donor — AgAmerica and its employees — and the presents are then given to the child from Santa or the child’s caregiver. Hepler shared that the AgAmerica team “provided a variety of things — from infant onesies to iPods and Nike jackets.”
The importance of this specific donation was not lost on the AgAmerica team. “We chose Heartland because it’s an organization that is solely focused on eliminating child abuse and neglect in our local community,” Hepler explained. It’s a sentiment that was echoed by the rest of the team.
“I believe that the greatest impact one can have on the world is to start with having a positive influence in one’s own community. At AgAmerica, it was important for us to start in our own backyard. We found Heartland for Children while searching for charitable organizations that serve our local area,” said Aaron Walters, one of AgAmerica’s Relationship Managers. “As with Heartland, it was important to us to not only support the children by spreading some holiday cheer, but to do it in a way that brings as much normalcy as possible … These kids need a normal, happy Christmas, and Heartland understands this,” he explained.
“For me, this was a way to ensure at least one child experienced love and joy this Christmas,” said AgAmerica CCO/COO Jackie Toenes. “With all they have gone through, I hope this gesture lets them realize there is still good in this world.”
Such giving is truly the stuff of Christmas miracles, but the AgAmerica team’s focus is solely on the children, not the kudos. “AgAmerica is happy to have the opportunity to help these children with an affirmative ‘Yes’ during negative times and tough circumstances,” Aaron Walters assured.
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Caroline Hepler joined AgAmerica Lending in May 2016 as a Credit Associate. Bringing 15+ years of industry experience to the agriculture arena, Caroline is excited to learn more about the ag community’s unique culture and to apply her business acumen while helping farm operations grow.
Aaron Walters joined AgAmerica Lending in 2016, and has a love for agriculture and the outdoors.
Chief Credit Officer, Chief Operating Officer
Jackie Toenes joined the AgAmerica team in early 2014, contributing a wealth of operational and financial management expertise. Beginning in the transitional/bridge loan division, she now oversees the operations of AgAmerica and its investment fund loan portfolio as the Company’s Chief Operating Officer and Chief Credit Officer.