Laura Akgerman – CFAES Disability Services Coordinator
The Ohio AgrAbility Program participated in the 2016 Farm Science Review September 20 – 22. The OAP display area included information and resources from Ohio AgrAbility, National AgrAbility, and several assistive technology & adaptive equipment companies. To ensure no mobility devices ran out of power, OAP provided a mobility scooter & chair charging station for participants needing a re-charge.
AgrAbility staff facilitated daily Peer Network meetings, with several of our clients leading the discussions, and relating their experiences with disability services and products. To facilitate access to the field demonstrations, AgrAbility sponsored an accessible shuttle bus to transport visitors from the main exhibit area to the farm fields.
Our exhibit area focused on assistive technology & adaptive equipment for rural lifestyles and agricultural businesses. The companies participating with our exhibit area at FSR included disABILITY Work Tools, Life Essentials, PWR EZ, K & M Manufacturing, Propel Doors, Bump n’ Drive Gates, and Action Track Chairs dealer McCabe Outdoors.
In addition to the display, our team presented a workshop titled Helping Ohio Farmers: A Combined Effort Between the Ohio AgrAbility Program and Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors, to OOD Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors, and Bureau of Workers Compensation staff. The two-hour workshop covered the history and mission of AgrAbility, information about Ohio farmers, Ohio AgrAbility, assistive technology, and resources for farmers. To emphasize the importance of the working relationships between state agencies, the workshop was approved for two hours of Continuing Education Units for Certified Rehabilitation Counselors. The workshop concluded with a tour of machinery exhibits, highlighting a variety of adaptive steps, ladders, and assistive technology for our farm clients.