New ‘Toplink’ project’ for retired farmers in South Armagh area

The Rural Health Partnership are delighted to have received funding from the Markethill NFU Mutual to help establish a new group and project for older farming men living in the South Armagh area.
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‘Toplink’ will offer a range of activities and opportunities allowing like-minded older farming men to “get together”.

Majella Gollogly, Development Officer with the RHP, commented: “Our new Toplink project will provide an opportunity to connect older farmers, enabling them to come together and link with each other in a monthly social setting.

“Farmers who have been busy all their lives working long hours may find it difficult to adjust to semi-retirement, they have been so busy building up their farm, working the land, tending to livestock, getting through the different workloads each season brings, that they have never found time to take up hobbies or other interests.”

Toplink groupToplink group
Toplink group

She continued: “For many, farming is not a job, but a way of life and, when the time comes to pass the farm on to the next generation, or step back from full-time farming and living in a remote rural area, with limited access, may mean that change could have a huge impact on the individual and his family.

“We are really grateful to local NFU Mutual team for their financial support, which will help us to get this project up and running.”

Chris Donaldson, NFU Mutual Markethill Agent, added: “NFU Mutual has been a champion of rural communities the length and breadth of the UK for over 110 years, and the Agency Giving Fund champions local causes that are working day and night to change people’s lives and give hope for a better future. We’re extremely proud to have nominated the new Toplink group for this donation and are delighted to be able to support the vital contribution they make to our community.”

One of the biggest issues facing retirees, especially men, is a lack of social opportunities. The RHP believes that its new Toplink project will provide the link and opportunity for those who have spent their lives in farming to come together socially on a monthly basis, to enjoy each other’s company, to chat about their farming experiences, and to have a chance to visit places and do things together that they may not have had the time to do previously.

If you are interested in joining the Toplink project, or would like more information on it, please contact Majella at the Rural Health Partnership on 07596 997883 or email [email protected]

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