Organic Farm Association: Farm Talk and Visit Ms Teresa Ryan
I heard about this initiative from a teacher in a neighbouring school and decided to enquire about it. I got in touch with Ms Maher who was very helpful and gave me a description of what was involved. We are a rural school in Laois with a lot of students who have farming backgrounds and felt it would be beneficial for them to find out about Organic Farming and what it involves. I was surprised to discover the lack of knowledge on Organic Farming in the school. The students who got to take part were Transition Year students, 5th-year Agricultural Science students and LCA’S. Before we visited the farms, we received a booklet and had a talk from two farmers in the local area (Tom Dunne and Dominic Leonard). They gave a very informative talk about how an organic farm works and how beneficial it is for the environment as well as the farm animals. A week later we divided the large group in two and went to the two farms. Each farmer gave us a tour of their farm and gave more detail about what they use, grow and feed their animals. The students found it very worthwhile and as a result, we have many students from TY in particular interested in taking agricultural science for their leaving certificate. Awareness about organic farming and its benefits were also carefully outlined and will hopefully influence our future farmers.