SCHOOLS across Munster are doing their best for Farm Safety with 122 Agri Aware Farm Safe Schools across the province.
The role of children on the farm during this Farm Safety Week (July 19-23) is crucial as 21 children have sadly died on Irish farms over the last decade.
As farms remain one of the most dangerous workplaces, the Agri Aware Farm Safe Schools programme educates students on the risks on farms and thinking ‘Farm Safety and Farm Safely.’
Across Munster, Cork has 45 Farm Safe Schools, with 25 in Tipperary, 25 in Kerry, 15 in Limerick, 10 in Clare and 5 in Waterford.
The programme delivers an interactive approach for school children to farm safety as the industry works to make farms safer.
Minister at the Department of Agriculture with responsibility for Farm Safety, Martin Heydon welcomed the progress made by the programme as he crowned the Agri Aware Farm Safe Schools National Champions supported by FBD.
Minister Martin Heydon said: “Well done to Agri Aware, along with Agrikids, FBD and the IFA on the Farm Safe Schools pilot which has been a tremendous success.
“Changing the culture towards farm safety in Ireland is a huge challenge for us, and I believe children have a significant role to play by stimulating that conversation at home and calling out bad practise when they see it.
“Great credit is due to the pupils and their teachers for the enthusiasm and energy they all put into their projects. I look forward to this becoming an annual project that helps us to drive down the unacceptably high level of farm fatalities and serious incidents.”
Agri Aware is supporting this year’s Farm Safety Week (19-23 July) organised by leading farming charity the Farm Safety Foundation encouraging the farming community to rethink risk so we can finally start to reduce the number of life-changing and life-ending incidents happening on UK and Ireland’s farms.
Throughout Farm Safety Week, the Farm Safety Foundation, supported by the Farm Safety Partnerships, the Health & Safety Executive, Health & Safety Executive for Northern Ireland and the Health & Safety Authority, Ireland, will encourage people in the industry to speak up for safety and make our farms safer places to work. Farming has the poorest safety record of any occupation in the UK and Ireland so this week brings five countries together to encourage farmers and farm workers to view health and safety as an integral part of their business, carry out risk assessments and recognise the changing hazards and risks on any busy farm.