MORE than 250 farmers and farm families have so far taken up the opportunity to get to grips with using IT and computers in their farm business.
Run locally at venues across the province the course, delivered over four evening sessions, is proving very popular with the farming community.
Maurice Stewart a participant on the programme said: “I had no previous experience or training in using computers. I was a bit hesitant about attending but glad I did. I have found the course extremely worthwhile and enjoyable too. It was good to be in the company of other farmers and farming families. We were able to view our farm maps, set up an email account and even search for farm machinery. It is truly quite amazing what you can find out. I would encourage all farming families to give it a go.”
Speaking on behalf of the delivery agent Countryside Agri Rural Partnership, Teresa Canavan, said: “We are delighted with the interest shown to date. With greater emphasis now being placed on using computers within the farm business we see this fully funded course as a step in the right direction, particularly in supporting those who have never used a computer before or those with little experience. Sessions will continue in the New Year and it is not too late to register, it’s a simple matter of contacting us, letting us know your interest and we will sort the rest.”
A total of 18 courses are currently running across Northern Ireland including courses in Cushendall, Carrickmore, Magherafelt, Banbridge, Cookstown, Armagh, Claudy, Fermanagh, Dungiven, Rouskey, Dungannon, Omagh, Reaghan, Newry and Cullybackey. Opportunity exists to run further courses including new areas.
This programme is part of the Farm Family Options measure being managed by the Countryside Agri-Rural Partnership on behalf of DARD and is open to both farmers and members of the farm family age 17 and over. A Farm Business ID Number is required. Farming organisations within the area can also take the opportunity to register as a group and have the training delivered to them in a local venue.
For more information or to register please contact Anne Marie Bell, Farm Family Options on 0845 026 7534.