Be Agri Aware on the farm this summer

With the busy season in full swing on farms across the country, Agri Aware, in association with FBD, the IFA and ESB Networks, is running its first Farm and Countryside Safety Month at Family Farm (developed by Agri Aware and Dublin Zoo) throughout July.

The month long initiative aims to increase awareness of potential dangers on the farm and in the countryside, helping reduce farm related accidents.Throughout July, visitors to Family Farm will not only have the opportunity to take part in a specially designed farm safety trail, but volunteers from the IFAs Farm Family and Social Affairs committee will also be on hand to answer any farm safety queries and promote safety messages. Galway farmer,Peter Gohery, currently an ambassador for FBD in promoting farm safety, will also give talks about his own personal experience of a farm related accident. Information on electrical safety on the farm, a key message delivered by ESB Networks, will also be made available to visitors.

Prior to the school holidays, primary schools nationwide received Agri Awares health and safety pack which included details of Agri Awares safety calendar competition which challenges students to draw or paint a picture/artwork that depicts farm safety. A selection of entries will be exhibited in the Family Farm classroom with the top 12 submissions featuring in Agri Awares safety calendar. To set the tone for an ever safer year of farming in 2013, all colanders will be distributed to primary schools across the country December.

Speaking at the launch of Farm and Countryside Safety Month at Family Farm, Agri Aware Chairman Bernard Donohue commented, “Knowledge in the hands of our children will empower them. We must ensure that our children are aware of the potential hazards and dangers on farms and I encourage all visitors to Family Farm in Dublin Zoo over the next few weeks to educate themselves by participating in the Farm and Countryside Safety trail and visiting the Family Farm classroom to learn more about farm safety from our guest speakers.”

Conor Gouldson, company secretary with FBD commented, “Our message to children and their parents is to always keep safety at the forefront of their minds whether crossing the road or living on a farm. We believe the Family Farm in Dublin Zoo provides an excellent learning experience for children detailing real examples from which to learn valuable lessons.”

Eddie Downey, IFA Deputy President said, “education and awareness among primary school children is an important part of the overall campaign to improve farm safety. The summer holidays have begun and many children will be looking forward to spending more time on the farm. Members of the IFA Farm Family Committee undertook training recently on how to present and engage primary school children on the dangers on the farm. The training was tailored specially for a younger audience, to increase the effectiveness of the message.”

Kieran Finucane, Customer Relations Manager, ESB Networks added, “We are delighted that Agri Aware has organised this initiative for the month of July. It gives us a great opportunity to highlight important safety advice about potential electricity related hazards. This advice is aimed particularly, but not solely, at young people who are involved in outdoor leisure pursuits”

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