Jackie Allenbrand attended a networking event on December 2 with other service providers in the nine counties that MERIL serves. She also participated in the Chamber of Commerce Ag Division meeting on December 16. Discussion focused on forage and grazing practices to share with farmers in the NW Region. Two referrals came into MERIL, and Missouri AgrAbility has followed up with the interested parties.
Trisa Nickoley and Don Schuster staffed an AgrAbility booth at the Vernon County Extension Center Open House with 154 attendees. Pat Miller, MU Regional Specialist and West Central County Program Director and Wayne Prewitt, Interim MU Extension Regional Director were on hand, along with numerous local community-based leaders. The AgrAbility displays, ergonomic hand tools, and handout materials attracted numerous potential clients.
Russell Ramsey, volunteer farmer, continues to lead Missouri’s effort to formalize a statewide AgrAbility volunteer peer support and caregiver network. The network will help Missouri consumers cultivate independence by sharing how others cope with the "ups and downs" of their disabilities, while caregivers explain how they have learned to better navigate the care system.
Russell and AgrAbility staff members also continue to work on Missouri’s "Volunteer Peer Support and Caregivers Barn Builders" publication. This publication will include information on past and present consumers with disabilities and caregivers from all eight University of Missouri Extension regions who are available to assist others with similar disabilities reap the benefits of AgrAbility assistance, services, and networking opportunities.
Karen Funkenbusch attended a seminar by the University of Missouri Office of Disabilities Services and Vocational Rehabilitation. The purpose of the consultation was to learn about new electronic teaching tools combined with how to provide online services and accommodations that help students with disabilities participate more fully in an online learning experience.
Volunteer master gardeners continue presenting the AgrAbility Gardens for Every Body Program to the public throughout rural Missouri.Twenty participants learned how to appropriately select ergonomic and enabling garden tools; techniques tomodify tools; efficient and effective methods to gardening on small acreages;and how the AgrAbility program assists farm and ranch operators with disabilities.