The deadline for contributing to the American Farm Bureau Federation tsunami aid fund has been extended until May 1. The fund was established to provide assistance to farm families in the Indian Ocean area affected by the tsunami disaster.

In announcing the extension, the fund organizers said that more than $20,000 of aid has been raised so far, but they are confident considerably more will be raised.

“We are quite grateful for all the donations that have ranged from $1 to $8,000,” said Terry Gilbert, AFB Women's Committee chairperson. “My home state, Kentucky Farm Bureau, has surpassed my expectations already by raising over $8,000, but we recognized that giving our Farm Bureau members an extension to donate would be wise as some state fund-raising programs have not been completed.”

Charles Riemenschneider, director for the liaison office of the U.N.'s FAO, said recently that “American farmers understand the hardships facing families and rural people in the tsunami region better than most.”

Bureau offices have been collecting and transferring money to the relief fund. Donations are tax deductible when made out to AFBFA/Tsunami Relief. Checks should be mailed to 600 Maryland Avenue, S.W., Suite 800, Washington, D.C. 20024.