RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC – As part of its annual Ag Issues Forum, a media event hosted by Bayer CropScience, country singer Jimmy Wayne shared his talent and his story of being a homeless teen. In response to this serious issue, Bayer CropScience donated $5,000 to support Jimmy Wayne’s efforts to raise awareness of teen homelessness in America through the “Meet Me Halfway” project.
Wayne grew up in a variety of foster homes and occasionally found himself homeless as a teen. He was given a second chance at the age of 16, when a 70-year-old couple, Bea and Russell Costner took him in. As a successful singer, he is now using his fame to garner supporters, such as Bayer CropScience, to help with his cause.
In 2010, Wayne began walking from Nashville, Tennessee to Phoenix, Arizona to raise awareness for youth “aging out” of the foster care system. The “Meet Me Halfway” project has since gathered supporters from across the world to help end teen homelessness.
On the project’s web site, Wayne said, “Because I was helped when I needed it, I want to try and help now. I am asking (people) to meet me halfway by getting involved — donate money, adopt a kid, learn more about the foster child/foster parent program in your local community. There’s so much one person can do, and so many ways they can make a difference. It just takes one person to help someone to a better life.”
Bayer CropScience is meeting Wayne halfway with the donation of $5,000 to his Meet Me Halfway project, managed through The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee. This fund was established by Jimmy Wayne to benefit non-profit organizations that serve youth — particularly youth in foster care or youth who are experiencing homelessness.
“We feel very strongly that people should have the basics of life — food, water, and shelter. As a company, we develop solutions to help farmers provide food to a growing population,” says Mike Deall, vice president of marketing, Bayer CropScience. “With partnerships such as this, we are also working to ensure that homeless teens receive those basic needs.”
This is another example of how Bayer CropScience is giving back to communities. In the Raleigh, NC area, Bayer has teamed up with Passage Home, a local community development organization with the mission of fighting poverty and homelessness by strengthening families and neighborhoods.