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Fundraising event calls on community to drive for a purpose
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Community members will soon have the chance to test drive some of Ford’s newest vehicles, all while contributing to a good cause.

Price Ford of Turlock will be holding a fundraising event at Pitman High School which will benefit the school’s Future Farmers of America student scholarships and development programs. The Drive One 4 UR School program aims to raise $8,000 for the school’s FFA chapter.

“When the community gets involved and helps in these fundraisers, it is a direct investment into the long term success of that community,” said PHS Agriculture teacher Luke Gocke.

With each test drive of a new Ford vehicle during the upcoming event, $20 will be donated directly toward the FFA at Pitman for its annual programs. No donations are necessary on the part of participants, and the generated funds will help pay for students to go to events such as FFA Leadership Conferences and allow more students to participate in Career Develop Events, such as the competitions attended by the school’s welding team. The funds will also help the chapter compete in public speaking competitions around the region.

“We want to increase the amount of students who are going to these curricular events, as they enhance the classroom experience,” said Gocke.

The FFA chapter at PHS relies heavily on fundraisers such as the Drive One event, said Gocke, with 90 percent of funds used to take students to leadership conferences deriving from fundraising and donations from community members.

“Having fundraisers is extremely important for our local schools,” said Gocke. “Often times, it is up to clubs, boosters, teachers and staff to get creative as to how we can fund certain aspects of education.”

Last week, the school’s FFA chapter went to the Greenhand Leadership Conference, and although 50 students signed up for the trip, only 23 were able to attend because there weren’t enough resources to take everyone.

“Our focus with this big event is to create the funds to increase our participation at the events we go to already,” said Gocke.

This is the second Drive One event hosted by Price Ford. The dealership sponsored the program in April, raising over $4,000 for Turlock High School Aquatics Boosters, and has a third Drive One event planned for spring of 2017.

“It’s a great way for us to give back to the kids,” said Price Ford owner James Figurell.

At the PHS Drive One event, Ford’s newest cars will be available to test drive, including the F-150. Participants can try out the truck’s state-of-the-art features, such as trailer parking assistance and parallel parking assistance.

“It’s a neat way to be able to see the new stuff that’s out there without having to go to the car lot,” said Figurell. “Instead, you can come down to the high school and raise some money for the kids.”

The Drive One 4 UR School event will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sept. 17 at PHS.