Kerry Social Farming (KSF) is collaborating extensively with UCC and Skellig CRI in Cahersiveen, in devising and planning the NQF Level 6 ‘Certificate in Practice Support in Social Farming’.
The course is aimed at expanding training opportunities for both new and existing host farmers as part of the Kerry Social Farming initiative. The ‘Certificate in Practice Support in Social Farming’ was completed by 13 Kerry host farmers in 2020 and a further 15, a mixture of existing and new host farmers, in 2021. The feedback from farmers is very positive, both in terms of how it has helped their social farming practice and also how returning to education, many after a long break, has benefited their own personal development and self-confidence.
SKDP’s Joseph McCrohan said that this course supports all those engaged to understand the history and components of social farming and disability services.
“It supports farmers with communication styles and an opportunity to share and develop suitable activities on their farms that will benefit social farming participants,” he said. “Both the host farmers and their participants enjoy the benefits of the course and it helps support and strengthen the Social Farming initiative.”
The use of the online virtual world of study over the past academic year has pushed students to further develop their IT skills, along with their learning specific to the course content around social farming.
The course is taught by experienced teachers, many of whom have direct experience of working in social farming. The course examines a variety of topics, including learning how social farming operates both in Ireland and across Europe, the communities it serves and the outcomes it provides. The role of the environment, the farm setting and well-being and how they link to social farming practice are explored. The course features modules on law and the legal position around disability and equality, which provide a practical insight into the issues involved.
Communication is a key topic, with students learning about a variety of communications styles and how to build on their own existing strengths in a way which can improve the social farming experience. There is also a module on social inclusion which focuses on how groups and individuals may be excluded from society, and how social farming can provide opportunities leading to meaningful and sustainable social inclusion.
The course is now established as part of UCC’s Adult and Continuing Education (ACE) programme, see www.ucc.ie/en/ace-cpssf.
KSF was established in 2013 to innovatively target both an increasingly marginalised farming community in the county, and offers choice to people with disabilities to engage with farm families and the farming community, in tandem with meeting their personal life choices and exploring new options within a rural community setting.
An information event on the 2021/2022 course, containing feedback from the successful students (farmers), will be held via Zoom on July 27 at 8pm. If you would like to hear more about the course and or to attend the information event please contact Joseph McCrohan, South Kerry Development Partnership CLG at 066 9472724 or email email@example.com.
Develop skills and improve employability
By Niamh Dwyer, Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors Traineeships are developed and delivered on an ongoing basis by Education and Training Boards (ETBs) nationwide and are open to potential participants of all ages and backgrounds including school leavers, mature learners and those in or seeking employment. Developed in partnership with industry representatives […]
By Niamh Dwyer, Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors
Traineeships are developed and delivered on an ongoing basis by Education and Training Boards (ETBs) nationwide and are open to potential participants of all ages and backgrounds including school leavers, mature learners and those in or seeking employment.
Developed in partnership with industry representatives and employers, these programmes combine learning in the classroom with a minimum of 30 percent of learning on-the-job. The focus is on ‘learning on the go’ and developing perspectives that are in tune with the ever evolving world of work. They span across a range of industry sectors including business and retail, media, manufacturing, agriculture, horticulture and mariculture, care, construction, engineering, animal science, fashion and beauty, finance, ICT, hospitality, sports and leisure, and logistics.
At the core of the scheme is a strong collaboration with the ETBs in the provision of work-based learning opportunities on existing and new programmes. Traineeships lead to an award at Levels 4-6 on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ) and are between six to 24 months in duration. Over 75 programmes are available nationwide – although not all of them will be available nationally at all times – and the content, award and duration may vary. They are designed for flexible delivery to include online, face-to-face and blended learning.
Second level or higher education students who are interested in participating in a Traineeship Programme should contact their local ETB, adult learners should contact the Adult Education Guidance Service through their local ETB, and jobseekers will be able to access information through their local Intreo Office or Local Employment Service. For those currently unemployed, a training allowance or income support may be available. You can check out the range of opportunities offered through Traineeships nationwide on www.fetchcourses.ie and more locally check out the www.kerrycollege.ie.
Niamh Dwyer is a Guidance Counsellor in Scoil Phobail Sliabh Luachra, Rathmore, and Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors. She is also a Career Consultant – For details see www.mycareerplan.ie or follow @mycareerplan on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
KNOW YOUR RIGHTS: Return to work courses
Answer: Springboard+ provides free higher education courses for people who are unemployed (or were self-employed) and those looking to return to the workforce. Courses are offered in different areas including Information and Communications Technology (ICT), medical technologies, cybersecurity, sustainable energy and financial services. The courses range from certificate to master’s degree level – Levels 6 […]
Answer: Springboard+ provides free higher education courses for people who are unemployed (or were self-employed) and those looking to return to the workforce.
Courses are offered in different areas including Information and Communications Technology (ICT), medical technologies, cybersecurity, sustainable energy and financial services.
The courses range from certificate to master’s degree level – Levels 6 to 9 on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ). Most of the courses are part-time and last for one year or less, but there are some full-time courses.
You can access a free Springboard+ course, if you are getting a qualifying social welfare payment such as Jobseeker’s Allowance, Jobseeker’s Benefit or the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP). You can get a full list of qualifying payments for Springboard+ on citizensinformation.ie
If you are not getting a qualifying social welfare payment, you will have to meet the residency criteria for Springboard+.
You can also apply for a Springboard+ course if:
* You are a qualified adult of working age (under 66) on someone else’s social welfare payment
* You are signing for social insurance credits
* You are on an employment support scheme such as Community Employment (CE) or TUS
To apply for a Springboard+ course, you choose the course(s) you are interested in on springboardcourses.ie and apply online, following the instructions on the website. You can apply for up to 10 courses, but you can only take one course.
If you are getting a social welfare payment, you should notify your Intreo Centre or local Social Welfare Branch Office and check what further steps (if any) you need to take.
If Springboard+ doesn’t meet your needs, there are several other ways to go back to education.
During COVID-19, you can find comprehensive integrated information online at citizensinformation.ie/covid19/ and you can get daily updates on what’s changed on Twitter at @citizensinfo. You can also get information and advice from:
Tralee on Tel: Call 0761 07 7860, Monday – Friday (10am-4pm)
The Citizens Information Phone Service: Call 0761 07 4000, Monday to Friday, 9am – 8pm
Our national call back service: Visit citizensinformation.ie/callback to request a phone call from an information officer
Develop skills and improve employability
By Niamh Dwyer, Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors Traineeships are developed and delivered on an ongoing basis...
KNOW YOUR RIGHTS: Return to work courses
Answer: Springboard+ provides free higher education courses for people who are unemployed (or were self-employed) and those looking to return...
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