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Education opportunity for Kerry farmers

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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.

TOPICS

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 jmccrohan@skdp.net.

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The tax you’re really paying for your health

By Brian Foley from Activate Fitness With the budget just squared away, there’s always an air of “how did I do out of it?” In Ireland, we enjoy a public healthcare system which is touted to become a universal healthcare system. Maybe “enjoy” is the wrong word. We have it, and we use it, and, […]

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By Brian Foley from Activate Fitness

With the budget just squared away, there’s always an air of “how did I do out of it?”

In Ireland, we enjoy a public healthcare system which is touted to become a universal healthcare system. Maybe “enjoy” is the wrong word.

We have it, and we use it, and, of course we pay for it. We justify the constant ratcheting-up of our tax burden to pay for rising health-care costs. That tax is on our wallets.

We also pay another type of tax: When we’re unhealthy, we don’t get to do the things we like. When we’re overweight, we don’t always say “YES!” when our kids ask to go to the swimming pool.
When we’re unfit, we don’t take our buddy’s invitation for a weekend hiking and camping trip. We can’t start jogging because our knees hurt; can’t lift weights because our back hurts; can’t cut down calories because we feel we need the energy.

Those things are taxes. Physical taxes, but they’re not the worst taxes we pay.

The worst tax we pay is the mental tax.

When we’re self-conscious about our fitness or health, we don’t want to start exercising. We don’t want to look dumb or fail.

We don’t want to start a new lifestyle because our families will say “good for you”, because they know we need it, or they’ll say “you don’t need that …” and lie. Or they’ll roll their eyes because they know we’ve failed before.

When we’ve been away from the gym for four months, we don’t want to do that first workout because we’re going to be last. It’s going to suck and we might get embarrassed.

SELF IMPOSED TAX

The Government makes us pay financial tax, but the other two – physical and mental – are self-imposed.

No one cares if you’re slow.

No one cares if you finish last.

No one cares if you blow your nutrition this week and have to start all over again.

You’d stop caring about what others thought about you if you realised how rarely they actually do.

Everyone thinks about themselves, mostly. That’s the tax they’re paying – and most of us overpay.

We’re taxed enough. Stop worrying about what you look like and start caring about what makes you feel good.

If you’d like to start taking steps in the right direction with your health and fitness, call in for a free consultation with us at Activate. Visit www.activate.ie/free-intro for more information.

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Tractor run raises €500 for charity

By Sean Moriarty Members of Killarney Valley Vintage and Classic Club raised €500 for the Kerry Mental Health Association during their first tractor run since April 2019. 30 tractors took part on Sunday including two rare Ford 3000s from 1974 and an even rarer Zetor Crystal from 1980. Departing from the club’s new ‘Vintage Shed’ […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Members of Killarney Valley Vintage and Classic Club raised €500 for the Kerry Mental Health Association during their first tractor run since April 2019.

30 tractors took part on Sunday including two rare Ford 3000s from 1974 and an even rarer Zetor Crystal from 1980.

Departing from the club’s new ‘Vintage Shed’ on Lewis Road, the convoy travelled to the communications mast near Coolick in Kilcummin, where participants enjoyed views of the wider Castleisland district and Killarney Valley.

“Some of the drivers were never up there before and they were amazed with the views across the two valleys,” organiser Tom Leslie told the Killarney Advertiser.

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