November 2021
A monthly update for AgrAbility projects and friends of AgrAbility
USDA's FY '22 RFA for SRAPs has been released, and applications are due Thursday, January 13, 2022. More

Join the next AgrAbility all-staff virtual meeting Monday, November 29 at 3:00 p.m. ET, 2:00 CT, 1:00 MT, 12:00 PT, 11:00 AKT. The agenda currently includes updates from NIFA, information on current and upcoming initiatives, and a presentation from Farm Rescue.
Regional workshops:
  • The next regional workshop gets underway in Manhattan, Kansas, November 16-18. This workshop is covering topics on suicide prevention, help for farmers in crisis, veterans, VR, business planning, and tips for working smarter not harder.
  • Staff are just starting to plan a regional workshop with OH AgrAbility for June 2022 in Columbus, OH. More information to come.
  • Anyone thinking they might be interested in hosting a Regional Workshop in conjunction with Goodwill and NAP, please contact Tess or JoBeth
AgrAbility/North Central Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Center webinar: "Strategies for Preventing Farm/Ranch Suicides and for Assisting Those Left Behind." Tuesday, November 30, 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. ET. More

On Tuesday, November 16, at 2:00 p.m. ET, Cindy Chastain and Paul Jones are scheduled to present a webinar for the ADA National Network: "Agriculture as The Next Mission for Military Veterans of All Abilities." Registration ends TODAY here.
NTW updates:
  • The link to make hotel reservations is live. Click HERE or go to the NTW page on the NAP website. More
  • The Call for Proposals deadline has passed and staff are finalizing the schedule. The NTW website is being updated and will be available soon.
  • Please start reaching out to anyone who might want to be a vendor or sponsor, or send Tess their information. Here is the link to the Exhibitor-Sponsor Google form. More
  • Also, start thinking about state raffle baskets and auction items. Both of these activities help bring farmer clients to the NTW.
  • Anyone wanting to join the planning committee or having any questions about the NTW, contact Tess at
The National AgrAbility Project collaborated with eight other health and safety projects for a display at the 2021 National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, Indiana. The display was staffed by NAP staff members and included a John Deere tractor with a Life Essentials lift and AgrAbility publications and case studies. More
Toolbox Spotlight
Herding a cow into a small pen then restraining it to help deliver the calf and/or aid in nursing can be difficult and dangerous, requiring quick movement and strength. A Calving/Maternity Pen, consisting of steel-tubed panels, automatic head-gate, sweep-gate, and rear-access door, is designed to solve this problem. The sweep-gate has a lower level that can be opened to give the new-born access to nurse, and the rear-access door is designed to provide safer entry to assist with delivery, if necessary.
Staff virtually attended and provided handouts for attendees at the Disability and Aging Summit hosted by Special Olympics of Alaska. More

Assistive Technology of Alaska offered a free virtual "Tech Hour" focusing on assistive technology for everyday independence. The next Tech Hour will be on accessible agriculture on November 16th at 11:00 a.m. AKT. Join them for this informal chat at

Alaska AgrAbility's quarterly e-newsletter was distributed on October 22. Resources for employment in agriculture, Alaskan foot health, noteworthy assistive technology, and upcoming events were covered. Read it now by clicking here.
Alaska participated in the National AgrAbility Virtual State Fair October 25 hosting the Facebook and Twitter pages. This opportunity allowed for increased social media exposure. The team enjoyed highlighting some fun Alaska facts and clients during the fair.

DeShana York continued to assist on the planning committee for the 1st Annual Farm Bureau Convention & Tradeshow that took place in Anchorage, Alaska, November 12-14. More
California AgrAbility staff participated in the second California Coming Together Conference of the year presented by their partner agency, California Foundation for Independent Living Centers (CFILC), and California Association of Area Agencies on Aging (C4A). More
California AgrAbility hosted the Western Region Agricultural Stress Assistance Program (WRASAP) Network quarterly meeting. Montana State University (MSU) assistant professors Drs. Michelle Grocke and Alison Brennan shared findings from WRASAP's Agriculture Producer Baseline Survey... More

Throughout the month of October, California AgrAbility staff participated in the National AgrAbility Virtual State Fair (VSF), sharing posts on the VSF Twitter and Facebook pages. More

California AgrAbility staff attended the first UC Davis Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety (WCAHS) monthly seminar of the fall season. More
Colorado AgrAbility staff had a busy month in October; however, most of the time expended was on grants and administrative matters. Staff were very fortunate to have been able to re-visit some old clients and share their stories in the AgrAbility Virtual State Fair. As many SRAPs do, Colorado has clients that staff still follow, even if from afar, that go back to the project's beginning.
Georgia AgrAbility exhibited at the Sunbelt Ag Expo, an agricultural-based trade show held in Moultrie, GA. The event has more than 1200 exhibitors showcasing the latest in farming technology. More

On October 21, Georgia AgrAbility took over the National AgrAbility's Virtual State Fair page in celebration for AgrAbility's 30th year! Staff posted AT highlights, inspirational quotes from clients, farmer stories, and more!
Did you know Georgia produces over 50% of the peanuts in the United States? Dr. Glen Rains was recently filmed talking about precision agriculture for a Georgia Public Broadcasting (GPB) show called "Live Exploration: Georgia Peanuts." More

Georgia AgrAbility will be attending the Troup County Ag Day on November 6. More
Indiana AgrAbility Project, Indiana AgVets Project, and the Farmer Veteran Coalition of Indiana hosted an event for farmer veterans on October 9th at the Porter Farm in Danville, Indiana. More
Kansas AgrAbility Project (KAP) staff was joined at a recent meeting by the Kansas USDA-NRCS conservationist to gain knowledge on NRCS programs and how they can assist KAP customers that may benefit from some sustainability practices through grants and other options available.

Kansas AgrAbility AT Ag Specialist Lesa Whitson and ATK Training Coordinator Sheila Simmons shared how AgrAbility can assist members of the Western Way Kansas Cowboy Church and its community.

KAP Coordinator Tawnie Larson attended the K-State Research and Extension Annual Conference and participated in a workshop titled "For Us All: Creating Thriving and Healthy Communities," which is based on the Cooperative Extension's National Framework for Health Equity and Well-Being. More
Maine AgrAbility's program "Boots-2-Bushels" (B2B) finished up the 2021 growing season with two sessions of farm coaching discussing effective communication between farm partners and employees. More
Level 2 OT fieldwork student Michaela Marden has authored Maine AgrAbility's latest article "Maine FishAbility: rotator cuff injuries" for the November 2021 issue of Commercial Fisheries News. More

To increase the capacity and access of the Maine AgrAbility program, staff developed a training program to create Maine AgrAbility Ambassadors (MAAs). More
Missouri AgrAbility focused their social media efforts on program promotion for MU Extension and partner program, resources for AgrAbility clients, and the AgrAbility Virtual State Fair (VSF). More

Brenda and Karen continue to work on several Vocational Rehabilitation AgrAbility cases in the northeast region. More
The grain bin rescue demonstration was an engaging safety activity for people of all ages at the 2021 Farmfest in Springfield, Missouri. Farmfest is an annual farm show that boasts approximately 800 booths and 500 registered livestock displayed for thousands of attendees over three days. More
Missouri AgrAbility marketing in cooperation with the Brain Injury Association of Missouri (BIA-MO) attended the Annual Statewide Conference and Survivor and Family Seminar on October 7 - 9, 2021. More
A diverse team, including two Nebraska AgrAbility team members, a Nebraska AgrAbility Advisory Board member/peer support member, and the program manager from National AgrAbility, collaborated to present at the annual National Amputee Coalition Conference. More

The team participated in the Virtual State Fair. It has been educational and fun to see what each state is doing within their AgrAbility teams - great job to everyone involved - and a big thank-you to the Nebraska team for their hard work and help to put together different sections.

Specialists have been working with clients on the Ag AT Fund; still trying to work out the kinks, but very excited to see some clients become more independent with the technology this fund can help provide them.

November is gearing up to be busy with events, and staff members are busy preparing for conferences and outreach events.
North Carolina
On October 5, NC AgrAbility sponsored the AgrAbility 30 Years Virtual State Fair. More
At the NC State Extension Conference on October 26, the NC AgrAbility Partnership presented "Addressing Limitations in Agriculture: NC AgrAbility Partnership." Fifteen Extension agents and directors from various counties attended the event. This presentation was part of a training to become AgrAbility Ambassadors.

On October 28, NC AgrAbility Partnership presented at the NC Rehabilitation Association 65th Annual and 1st Virtual Training Conference. More
Ohio AgrAbility staff enjoyed participating in the 2nd annual Virtual State Fair, and always enjoys seeing the farmers, staff, and successes from all SRAPs.

On October 18, Rural Rehabilitation Coordinator Rachel Jarman was interviewed by Rob Sharkey on Shark Farmer radio that airs on XM147, Rural Radio. More
Ohio AgrAbility is grateful for the people and organizations that support them, as well as the writers at OSU College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences who share the AgrAbility story and who recently wrote about OSU CFAES alumnus Austin Heil who organized the Cursive Ohio Bike Adventure fundraiser to benefit Ohio AgrAbility.
October was a full month for AgrAbility PA. Staff members were able to meet in-person with the AgrAbility PA Advisory Board. More

Project Director Suzanna Windon and graduate assistant Carolyn Henzi have presented on the topic of "Managing Stress on the Farm" to various groups this fall including Spanish-speaking farm supervisors, farmers, and ag workers on October 21. More
AgrAbility PA participated in the 2nd annual AgrAbility Virtual State Fair. The month-long social media event provided information on farming with a disability or a health condition to audiences nationwide. Thanks for including Pennsylvania and thanks to all the fellow SRAPs for joining in.
TN AgrAbility was deeply saddened by Bill Begley's death and remembers this friend who will be greatly missed! He made a huge difference helping farmers with mobility challenges obtain Life Essential lifts and their independence. Bill cared for his farmers' success and checked in with them to see how they were doing. More
It was wonderful to see all the great things happening across the USA with AgrAbility and all the farmers' stories shared during the AgrAbility Virtual State Fair. Thank you to everyone who had a hand in making the #AgrAbility VSF a success.
Wayne County livestock producer Dennis Martin remarked, "Thank you isn't enough to say to TN AgrAbility for how much they helped me on my farm. Before my side-by-side, I felt so helpless." His wife, Kerri, added, "In essence, AgrAbility has given Dennis his legs back." Read the article about them HERE.
TNAP exhibited at Ag in the Foothills and networking lunch with the Farmer Veteran Coalition of TN at East TN AgResearch and Education Center (ETREC).

Meet Amanda Mathenia, UT Extension county director/farmer/TNAP farmer. Click here to view video.
Staff spoke to the Gibson County Youth/Adult Leadership class on the AgrAbility program.

Come visit TNAP at the upcoming Farmer Veteran Coalition Eastern Regional Conference that starts November 17 in Knoxville, TN. The countdown is on! Register at:
Texas AgrAbility hosted an educational webinar titled "Promoting Independent Living in Rural Communities" on November 10. More

Texas AgrAbility's advisory committee met for the quarterly meeting to review programs and plan upcoming year programs and events. The advisory committee consists of agency partners, community organizations, and clients.

A farm visit was conducted in partnership with Sam Houston State University for an amputee farmer who needs access to his tractor. Texas AgrAbility will be working with SHSU ag mechanics for the tractor modifications.

Applications for the BattleGround to Breaking Ground program close December 1. For more information on the program and how to apply, visit:

An in-person agriculture business workshop is being planned for January 28, 2022, in the Houston area. More
On October 25, AgrAbility of Utah was able to attend and explain AgrAbility to members of the Cache Interagency Council in Logan, Utah. The mission 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.

AgrAbility of Utah is planning and looking forward to its advisory board meeting that will be held the first of next month.
AgrAbility Virginia is currently working with 28 farmer clients at various levels of engagement and need, including a small-scale urban farmer in Richmond who has had 13 knee surgeries and has trouble bending down. More
The advisory group met on Tuesday October 26 to discuss new clients, outreach materials, and plans for 2022. DARS rehab engineer Tom Rybak and DARS advisory group member John Allen presented a tractor step extension being developing for an AgrAbility Virginia client. More

AgrAbility Virginia participated in the NAP Virtual State Fair on October 6 with 10 posts highlighting recent publications, client stories, and field staff introductions.
AgrAbility Virginia staff traveled to Moultrie, GA, in October to showcase the AgrAbility Virginia project and the Virginia State University Mobile Agriculture Education Unit at the Sunbelt Ag Expo where Virginia was the Spotlight State.

Virginia Cooperative Extension 4H volunteer and AgrAbility Virginia intern Zoey Van Peppen collaborated with AgrAbility Virginia staff to publish a promotional video geared toward youth across the state. It is available on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter at @AgrAbilityVA.

AgrAbility Virginia staff will be attending several in-person events in November, including: More

AgrAbility Virginia staff recently updated three publications, all available on their website under resources. More
WSAP is working with Cherry Creek Media to develop a native ad campaign . This campaign will run November 1 through January 31, include a radio interview, and will track site users. Audience is targeted in 10 rural Washington state communities. The goal is to increase requests for AgrAbility information using digital advertising.

WSAP participated in the National AgrAbility Virtual State Fair on October 28 with six posts, including simple solutions, partnerships, toolbox highlight, lending library, and WSAP's Spanish translation services.

One of WSAP's partners, Northwest Access Fund, hosted a workshop titled "Tools for managing medical debt" on November 3. WSAP promoted this event and attended the virtual webinar.

WSAP is planning and preparing for three, one-hour workshops at various commodity group conventions; one titled "Aching Hands and Stomped-On Feet," and another titled "Assistive Technology for Working Farmers."
Staff at AgrAbility of Wisconsin went on a farm visit to shoot a commercial for a Madison-based TV station. A lot of footage was captured and will be used for multiple videos in the future. Staff are currently gathering information for their annual advisory council meeting that will be held on November 16 in-person again.
AgrAbility for Africa
When faced with disabilities, the level of active participation in rehabilitation care and support plays a significant role in results achieved. With continued easing of movement restrictions, the AgrAbility for Africa staff have increased community outreach initiatives to boost farmer and farmworker knowledge and engagement in their own care. More

It is fact that when stress overwhelms the nervous system, the body goes into threat physiology, a state of sustained fight or flight that makes one seriously ill. With the curtailed social connection, digital divide in rural Africa, and technology being unable to bridge the gap for a big percentage of the rural population, mental health has deteriorated for many farmers and their children in Africa. More
The AKAgrAbility team is sad to report that Erin Main, AKAgrAbility occupational therapist, left our project on October 19. The team would like to express our gratitude and appreciation for all that Erin has done to enhance the program and the amazing work with our clients. She will continue to be a resource for the project as time allows, and has a passion for the project and expanding work in Green Care. We wish Erin well and look forward to working with her in the future!
Meet Finis Stribling. He was awarded the Central Region TAAA&S Adult Ag Agent Award for 2021. Finis and his work with TN AgrAbility and the New Farmer Academy are very valuable, and he definitely deserves this award.
WSAP lost Kate Seymour, grant coordinator and integral team member, who returned to her home state of Michigan to be closer to family. She will be missed greatly as she was such a valuable team member, but WSAP is excited for her future!
Click titles below for news stories featuring AgrAbility projects.

Click titles below for other news of interest to AgrAbility staff members.
Problems? Contact Chuck Baldwin, National AgrAbility Project,

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