July 2021
A monthly update for AgrAbility projects and friends of AgrAbility
2022 NTW will be in-person!!!! The NAP is working with AgrAbility of Wisconsin and the Madison Concourse Hotel again to bring you an in-person NTW for 2022. Tentative dates are March 14-17. Anyone interested in joining the planning committee may email Tess at tmckeel@goodwillfingerlakes.org. More information to come.

AgrAbility/North Central FRSAN webinar: "Stress and Migrant/Season Farmworkers." Wednesday, August 25, 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. EDT. Featured presenters include Esmeralda Mandujano of California AgrAbility and Kimber Nicoletti-Martínez of the NAP. Registration opening soon.
AgrAbility is celebrating its 30th anniversary! NAP would appreciate each SRAP providing one figure that estimates the combined years of direct AgrAbility experience for those paid on your grant. Also, would you be willing to provide a short quote that describes why your AgrAbility work is important to you and others? Any archival photos you'd be willing to share? Please send to jonesp@purdue.edu by July 23.

"Veterans Harvest: A Virtual Conference for Veterans in Agriculture." This series will convene for five consecutive Tuesdays beginning July 27 from 1 – 2:30 p.m. ET. Those already registered for the 2021 AgrAbility National Training Workshop Virtual Sessions are automatically registered for the veterans’ conference. More
Join us in Billings for an AgrAbility Regional Workshop !!! Hotel reservations close on 7/18. A link to the agenda and registration can be found on the NAP website HERE. More
For any questions, please contact Tess tmckeel@goodwillfingerlakes.org or JoBeth jbrath@goodwillfingerlakes.org.

The NTW virtual sessions continue to have great participation. They have been recorded and are available on the NAP website HERE. The next session is "How do you know what you don't know?" on Tuesday July 20 at 1 p.m. ET. Anyone already registered for any of the sessions will use the same Zoom link. For those not registered yet, a schedule for the rest of the sessions and a registration link is available on the NTW tab of the NAP website.
The National Amish Handicap [sic] Gathering was held in Shipshewana, Indiana, June 4-5. Due to years of relationship- and trust-building by Purdue AgrAbility and Extension staff, Purdue's National AgrAbility Project (NAP) was the only outside organization to have a booth at the event. More
The National AgrAbility Project's underserved populations outreach coordinator, Chuck Baldwin, and Ohio AgrAbility's PI, Dee Jepsen, staffed an AgrAbility booth July 2-3, 2021, at the Horse Progress Days event in Mt. Hope, Ohio. More
Toolbox Spotlight
The NIRA Wearable Smart Thermometer - a small device affixed to an adhesive patch that's placed just below the armpit - is designed to constantly monitor one's temperature, which is displayed (via secure app) on his/her smartphone. The phone will reportedly provide a visual alert at the first sign of abnormal temperature change, so that the user can be proactive and take immediate, appropriate action.
The Alaska AgrAbility team has been busy resuming in-person events and client visits where allowed. In June, two events were attended: the Nenana Ag Festival in
Nenana and the "A Women's Affair" event in Fairbanks.

Erin Main, AK AgrAbility client service administrator, has been able to begin meeting in-person with clients at their farms to resume some onsite assessments. More

Art Nash has been planning and working on logistics with developing an accessible garden demonstration site adjacent to the Palmer State Fairgrounds. More

July is shaping up to be fast-paced and on-the-go. The team is excited that they have the privilege of hosting Ned Stoller from Michigan AgrAbility while he is in Alaska on vacation. More

DeShana York is part of a planning committee working to host the first-ever Alaska Farm Bureau Ag Convention & Expo in Anchorage on November 12-14, 2021. More
California AgrAbility's Esmeralda Mandujano presented at the Ability Tools AT Advocates monthly meeting. Esmeralda gave an overview of the California AgrAbility program and highlighted the importance of collaborations with partners like Ability Tools to be able to better assist AgrAbility clients. More
Esmeralda also presented at the California Department of Rehabilitation quarterly meeting for the Inland Empire Regional Office. She provided a brief overview of the AgrAbility program and the services offered to clients. More (Image credit: Inland Empire DOJ https://oag.ca.gov/)

California AgrAbility staff attended the Generation Rx: Safe Medication Practices for Better Health webinar hosted by Ohio AgrAbility and presented by pharmacist Dr. Ruth Emptage of the Ohio State University College of Pharmacy. More
Staff presented on "Improving Relations with Vocational Rehabilitation" during the AgrAbility National Training Workshop virtual session on June 1st.

On June 15, a Georgia AgrAbility staff member was invited to have a discussion on farm hydraulics safety tips on the "Growing On" podcast with Georgia Farm Bureau.

Staff presented during the AgrAbility National Training Workshop virtual session on June 15 titled, "Programmatic Factors that Lead to Changes in Quality of Life and Independent Living and Working Levels with AgrAbility Clients and a 25-Year Overview of AgrAbility Demographics." Check out the recorded webinar on www.agrability.org.

Georgia AgrAbility was able to purchase an Action Trackchair for its mobile learning lab. Staff now have the Action Trackchair and the Journeyman Scooter for clients to try out when they are doing farm assessments. Staff will also be able to take the chairs to seating assessments with Vocational Rehabilitation.

On June 28, staff hosted a farmer veteran networking event in east Georgia. The farmer veterans were happy to have a chance to network with each other. The event had 10 veterans participate in lunch and discussion time.

Georgia AgrAbility partners with the Small Business Development Center's ag team to assist many GA AgrAbility farming clients. This month AgrAbility and the SBDC teamed up to help establish a marketing strategy on a new variety of pasture-raised laying hens for an AgrAbility client in South Georgia.
Flexibility in state purchasing contracts can be essential to meeting the needs of AgrAbility clients. Kansas AgrAbility staff worked closely with two regional supervisors from Kansas Rehabilitation Services (KRS) to document common modifications needed for vehicles used in agricultural settings. More
Maine AgrAbility's Boots-2-Bushels has started its monthly in-person workshops. On June 14, the group met at Chase Stream Farm, an organic diversified farm, to learn about irrigation systems. There was hands-on training for setting up an irrigation system in a high tunnel and practice transplanting seedlings using a Hatfield Planter. More

Maine AgrAbility's June 2021 article in the Commercial Fisheries News is about fishermen living and working with diabetes. More
The Bavarian Inn of Frankenmuth that chose Michigan AgrAbility as its charity for the entire year held its first event, "Joe's Bike Bash," on June 10. The event benefited Michigan AgrAbility and Michigan Heroes Museum. More
June 17was a big day for Michigan AgrAbility! Michigan AgrAbility filmed videos at western Michigan farms with National AgrAbility Project film crews. Thank you to two Michigan AgrAbility clients, Doug VerHoeven and Aaron Fenrich, for hosting! Please stay tuned for the release of the videos soon!
The First Annual Alpha Gamma Rho (AGR) Golf Outing benefiting Michigan AgrAbility was a great success! The golf outing raised $9,739 for Michigan AgrAbility! More

Mark the date for this year's AGRO EXPO in Michigan! Michigan AgrAbility will be one of the vendors at the AGRO EXPO on August 17-18, 2021, in Saint Johns, MI.
Brenda Schreck, Missouri AgrAbility outreach coordinator for the Northeast Region at MU Extension, assisted an AgrAbility client with the delivery and setup of his equipment from the MO Division of Vocational Rehabilitation. More

Missouri AgrAbility focused its social media efforts on National Men's Health Month, NTW promotion, and heat stress/illness. Additionally, Missouri AgrAbility continued to capture soundbites, photos, and videos of Missouri farmers with disabilities to build their media database. More
Thursday, June 17 and Saturday, June 19, twenty-seven veteran beekeepers and their families participated in a "Weathering the Storm in Agriculture: How to Cultivate a Productive Mindset" workshop presented by John Fuller, a veteran and field specialist in human development, and Karen Funkenbusch, director, Missouri AgrAbility Project. More
On Thursday, June 17, as part of their summer 2021 STEM learning experience, interns Elisabeth Gooch, agriculture education, Maggie Hillmann, nutrition and exercise, and Ashtyn Howard, biology - all students with the Integrated STEM Internship Program at the University of Missouri - participated in the Heroes to Hives Missouri State Chapter hands-on regular hive inspections, adding supers, marking queens, and varroa mite testing training session. More

Mrs. Susan Jaster, Lincoln University Cooperative Extension small farmer outreach worker (FOW) has been working with a farmer to develop a mechanism to mitigate nitrogen buildup for backyard duck producers.

Mr. Nahshon Bishop, Lincoln University Cooperative Extension regional small farm specialist, has been working in collaboration with the University of Missouri to develop educational materials for drone usage on farms.

Missouri AgrAbility was featured at the four Brain Injury Association of Missouri One-Day Regional Outdoor Camps held in St. Louis, Springfield, Kansas City, and Columbia between June 22 and 27. More

Professionals who serve AgrAbility clients in eastern Missouri were updated about the Heroes to Hives program during the Networking Coffee for Professionals in St. Louis on June 1. More
Nebraska AgrAbility staff are anxiously awaiting direction from the NE State Department of Agriculture as to how legislative funding will be dispersed through the department of ag and then on to AgrAbility for use in purchasing assistive technology for Nebraska farmers and ranchers with disabilities.

Nebraska Vocational Rehabilitation has initiated Zoom sessions for the involved VR Counselor, AgrAbility staff, and three other VR staff, to educate them on what NE AgrAbility's assistive technology recommendations are and how they will be implemented. This gives our staff the opportunity to explain what the AT is and how it will be used to help the client
NE AgrAbility's specialists had the opportunity to participate in an Omeo Technology demonstration recently. The rep had put wider wheels on for this visit, making the base 33" wide. (The smaller wheels are 22" wide.) It is a very compact wheelchair that turns on a dime and is controlled by trunk and torso movements. More

Staff are finally able to attend a few in-person events, and they promoted AgrAbility at a hospital health fair and the Haskell Ag Lab Family Field Day.
North Carolina
June 22, NC AgrAbility Partnership participated in the "Keeping Them Safe" workshop. More

The recent North Carolina & Virginia AgrAbility marketing efforts were rewarded by Mr. Jeff Ishee, owner of On the Farm Radio. More

NC AgrAbility holds monthly meetings with partners and collaborators to provide continuing quality services to farmers across the state.
Ohio AgrAbility staff have been busy presenting, writing, and holding webinars this summer. Ohio's Country Journal published an article written by OAP staff on safe lifting and good body mechanics for farmers and gardeners. AgriNews published two articles that summarized OAP's Caregiver Support Network's resources for caregivers.

OAP's Caregiver Support Network hosted a webinar on safe medication practices June 9, which provided a very helpful overview of safe medication storage, disposal, and educational toolkit available for a variety of age groups. The webinar video and resources are available on the Ohio AgrAbility website, at the Caregiver Support Network page.
June was a diverse month! Staffer Abbie Spackman participated in a panel discussion during the Northeast Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NEASDA). The "Feeding the Future" conference was hosted by the PA Department of Agriculture on Zoom. More

AgrAbility PA staff participated in the LatinX Ag Networking Meeting. This was the second meeting of a group of individuals across all sectors of the Penn State University's College of Agriculture looking to increase outreach and services for this growing population in Pennsylvania.
AgrAbility PA participated in a variety of social media and online promotional efforts for June's Dairy Month. Pennsylvania has the second largest number of dairy farms nationally, behind only Wisconsin. More

Abbie Spackman and her work with AgrAbility PA was featured on Mahindra North America's blog, website, and social media. Learn more about her personal story in agriculture and why she enjoys her work with AgrAbility here.
TN AgrAbility sends a BIG THANK YOU and congratulations to Deborah Reed, PhD, on her retirement! She has been a friend of AgrAbility and started consulting with KY AgrAbility and John Hancock in the early 1990s. She has always been a strong, clear voice and advocate to keep farmers safe and healthy. More -------- ---------- (Photo by Mark Cornelison)
BattleGround to Breaking Ground is now taking applications for the 10th cohort which will close July 14, 2021, at 5:00 p.m. CDT. Click here for more information.

The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension marketing and media team is coordinating with Texas AgrAbility and recent clients from the Amarillo, Texas, area on a feature story. The filming is planned for July and will be the feature of a marketing campaign highlighting AgrAbility's efforts to keep farmers and ranchers with various types of disabilities employed on the farm.
Texas AgrAbility client and BattleGround to Breaking Ground participant Damon Cleaton was featured on KXXV Channel 25 news as part of a veteran farmer story. The story highlighted the work of the AgrAbility client and another BattleGround to Breaking Ground program client's work in providing local food to their communities. You can view the story here.
AgrAbility of Utah staff was excited to present at two Extension field day events on June 3 and 4 in Blanding, UT, and Price, Utah. The theme of the two events was "Irrigation Improvements" and they were attended by many farmers and ranchers from the surrounding areas.

On June 8, AgrAbility of Utah attended the Sustainable Grazing Institute in Panguitch, UT, and was able to explain AgrAbility to the farmers and Extension agents who attended. The workshop was dedicated to improving grazing management throughout Utah and the Intermountain West and was taught by USU Extension faculty.

AgrAbility of Utah staff presented at the Sheep Management Workshop in Cedar City, UT, on June 15. The workshop was for sheep producers in the state of Utah, and topics included flock health strategies, drought management techniques, and mineral nutrition.

On June 24, AgrAbility of Utah attended and presented at two Extension field day events in Delta, UT, and Ephraim, UT. Both events were sponsored by Utah State University Extension and the topics included cover crop research, corn inter-seeding, and surface irrigation.

On June 28, AgrAbility of Utah staff attended the Cache Interagency Council's hybrid meeting and explained the mission of AgrAbility. The goal of the Cache Interagency Council is to unite non-profits and community service organizations in sharing ideas, upcoming events, and ongoing services, thus producing a spirit of unity and cooperation among the participating organizations.

Program Coordinator Randall Bagley was interviewed by KVNU radio during their "For the People" program on June 28. Randall talked about the history of AgrAbility in Utah and how AgrAbility was able to assist farmers and ranchers with disabilities. KVNU radio is broadcast from Logan, Utah, and coverage includes northern Utah. The interview can be heard here.
AgrAbility Virginia is currently working with 23 farmer clients at various levels of engagement and need, including a returning vegetable farmer client in Surry County.

The staff just printed a brochure in Spanish and is now disseminating it across the state. A version of the brochure is available on the website home page.

AgrAbility Virginia sent out their Spring 2021 newsletter. See the newsletter and sign up to receive future newsletters at the website here.

The staff attended a Virginia Division of Rehabilitative Services (DARS) open house in Christiansburg, Virginia.

The results of the 2021 AgrAbility Virginia evaluation have been published through Virginia Cooperative Extension and are available here.
The Washington State AgrAbility Project (WSAP) participated and exhibited at the Washington Association of Agricultural Educators Conference June 27-28 where 150 educators attended in-person and learned about WA AgrAbility and its services.

WSAP is working with stakeholders to plan an in-person meeting August 31. Staff will be showcasing the new Washington Assistive Technology Act Program (WATAP) facilities, reviewing stakeholder news, and discussing how to improve DVR awareness of AgrAbility services in Washington's rural communities.

WSAP continues working with six veteran farms throughout the state and learning how they work as well as how AgrAbility can help. Staff will be making farm visits including pop-up booth visits at each location with a demonstration of lending library tools.
The AgrAbility of Wisconsin staff is excited that they were able to get back out and see current and potential clients in person starting in late June. They attended an in-person meeting with the south-central WI Farmers Union group and shared more about Wisconsin AgrAbility.
AgrAbility of Wisconsin was also able to go visit a farmer and see a new piece of assistive technology he received recently. Staff spent a bit of time on his farm taking video and photos for future use.

AgrAbility of WI staff is excited to be attending the WI FFA Convention in person and sharing more about their program with youth in Wisconsin.
Please welcome Hailey TenHarmsel to the Michigan AgrAbility team! Hailey has been a research assistant on multiple projects at Michigan State University in the Department of Medicine, Division of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. Starting July 1, Hailey will be providing educational outreach as an AgrAbility outreach specialist. Hailey - we are very excited to have you on the Michigan AgrAbility team!
AgrAbility Virginia Program Co-Director Dr. Bobby Grisso has retired from his faculty position at Virginia Tech. Bobby played a foundational and pivotal role in bringing AgrAbility to Virginia over 18 years ago. Even though he is retired from his co-director role, he has agreed to join the Advisory Group! Thank you, Bobby!
Problems? Contact Chuck Baldwin, National AgrAbility Project, baldwi19@purdue.edu

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