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Social Farming Print

Social Farming is the practice of offering activity on family farms as a form of social support service.  In Social Farming the farm remains a working farm at its core but invites people to participate in the day to day activities of the farm.

Social Farming provides service users with the opportunity for inclusion, to increase self-esteem and to improve health and well-being. The farm is not a specialised treatment farm; rather it remains a typical working farm where people in need of support can benefit from participation in farm activities in a non- clinical environment.

The Social Farming Office (RoI) was opened in April 2015 by the Leitrim Development Company with the assistance of the Department of Agriculture Food & the Marine and the CEDRA Fund. It has been re-established to continue the work of the recently completed and highly successful Social Farming Across Borders (SoFAB) Project and will draw on the lessons learned and materials produced by the project.

The Support Office continues to support the development of Social Farming throughout Ireland. New Participants in Social Farming activities will be supported and Social farming initiatives will be further developed throughout the country.

The role of the office includes:

  • Provision of advice and guidance to farmers /farm families throughout Ireland who wish to establish social farming services, through information and training events;
  • Assistance in the development of service users and their families' understanding of the potential and delivery of social farming services;
  • Continue to raise public awareness of social farming through public events, mainstream and social media, engage with and support new initiatives around Ireland which are progressing and developing social farming.

Who can I talk to about Social Farming?

Deirdre Fahey of South West Mayo Development Company is the Regional Development Officer West and works across the western region.  She can be contacted at  087 623 3862 or dfahey@southmayo.com

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South West Mayo Development Company, Main Company Office, Georges Street, Newport, Co. Mayo, (F28 X329) Ireland.
T: +353 (0) 98 41950  F: +353 (0) 98 41952  E: info@southmayo.com

Rural Social Scheme Office, Main Street, Balla, Co. Mayo, Ireland.
T: +353 (0) 94 9366692  F: +353 (0) 94 9366693 E: rss@southmayo.com

Registered in Dublin 182222. Recognised by the Revenue Commissioners as a Charity No. CHY 10482
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