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February 2010


Don Schuster, Assistive Technology Coordinator, attended the “Way I See It, A Personal Look at Autism & Asperger’s” presented during the Temple Grandin Autism Conference held in Kirksville, Missouri.  Topics covered included About Autism, How a Person with Autism Thinks, Effective Communication, and Language Barriers. The Temple Grandin Autism Conference was sponsored by the Region II Council for Developmental Disabilities and Truman State University, Department of Speech and Hearing.,with special thanks to the Adair County SB40 Developmental Disability Board.

Russell Ramsey, Volunteer and Farmer Liaison continues to provide direct AgrAbility outreach services and assistance to farmers and ranchers with disabilities living and working in the southeast region of Missouri. He also continues to disseminate resource materials and programmatic information to social service agencies, agricultural organizations, and others in the southeast region interested in providing AgrAbility services.  

Russell Ramsey presented an AgrAbility program on “Farming with Arthritis” as well as information about the Missouri AgrAbility Program. He also staffed the AgrAbility at the Poplar Bluff Ag Expo. The event, organized by the Butler County MU Extension Council and the Three Rivers Community College Ag Club, attracted some 10,000 area residents, who were treated to educational seminars, exhibits, contests, and entertainment.

Think Outside the Barn” was the theme at the 2010 Missouri Governor's Conference on Agriculture.  The January 7-9, 2010 agriculture event was one of the most interesting and exciting events in recent history.  Governor Jay Nixon joined Missouri farmers and industry leaders in a critically important dialogue on the future of agriculture in Missouri and across the U.S. The University of Missouri Extension showcased several USDA funded programs, including the Missouri AgrAbility Program.

On January 29th-30, Jackie Allenbrand worked at the Ag and Rural Lifestyle Show in St. Joseph, MO. The AgrAbility and PHARM Dog booth was shared with the Buchanan County Extension.

Karen Funkenbusch presented an AgrAbility Gardens For Every Body Program to members of the Kansas City Garden Club. Garden Club members first learned about AgrAbility services and assistance for farmers and ranchers with disabilities followed by how to “Prevent Injuries Through the Use of Smart Tools.” This was an interactive, hands-on demonstration of how to select and use smart tools.  Participants learned how to recognize ways to maximize productivity by decreasing injuries, how to identify risk factors, and how to access reliable resource materials.

In a Jeopardy style format, Karen Funkenbusch presented to one hundred students from Raytown, Missouri. In this fun, interactive, and game show format, high school learned about Missouri agriculture, disability awareness, and the AgrAbility Program.    

Submitted by: Karen Funkenbusch