ORONO, Maine–The Maine AgrAbility project has received a $720,000, four-year grant from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) in ongoing support of its outreach, information and networking efforts.
The project, part of NIFA’s Assistive Technology Program for Farmers with Disabilities, is a partnership between University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Alpha One, Maine’s Center for Independent Living.
Maine AgrAbility works directly with farmers, loggers and fishermen, as well as agricultural service providers, by offering educational workshops, on-site assessments and technical assistance. This free resource is available to agricultural workers and their family members with a physical, cognitive or illness-related disability or chronic health condition so they may remain active in production agriculture, fishing or forestry.
Maine is one of 21 state AgrAbility projects nationwide. Since 2010, Maine AgrAbility has provided direct services and technical assistance to more than 480 agricultural producers in the state. Nationwide, farmers with disabilities who participated in the AgrAbility program report significantly greater quality of life and independent living and working.
–Lani Carlson, University of Maine