A letter from Brian Kuhl, President and CEO:
The new year brings great excitement for the Progressive Agriculture Foundation (R) and its Progressive Agriculture Safety Day (R) programs as we continue to remove barriers and make our programs even more accessible.
For the past 27 years, Foundation staff has traveled throughout the United States and Canada to provide one-day training sessions to volunteer Safety Day coordinators -- often requiring significant travel for the volunteer coordinators and offering limited sessions in each region. For 2022 Safety Days, our volunteer coordinators will have completed an online, at-your-own pace training series, which has created the much-needed flexibility for our coordinators' already-demanding schedules. Additionally, the training has been developed into three levels: one for first-year coordinators, another for second-year coordinators and a level for coordinators who have been with the program for three years or more.
At the conclusion of the training, the participants were asked to complete a short survey to help the Foundation best prepare our volunteer coordinators. Within the first month of the 2022 training being made available, 80% of the individuals responded that they do not feel an in-person platform would be more beneficial. The online format has greatly reduced the necessary resources required to hold the one-day trainings, therefore creating opportunities to improve our programming efforts to make farm, ranch and rural life safer. As this year's training site opened, nearly 450 Safety Day applications had been accepted, and late applications were still being considered.
We also understand how instrumental peer-to-peer sharing is, which is why we have introduced 11 live, lunch and lunch booster sessions, where panelists will share their expertise and personal experience with lead and assistant coordinators. Each booster session is also recorded for coordinators to watch at a later date if they would not be able to attend the live session or rewatch at any time. The booster sessions provide a platform for more in-depth discussion, with each session focusing on a certain topic, as we have heard from many coordinators that the idea of sharing among colleagues during the in-person training helped improve their own Safety Day.
Lastly, we will be unveiling a new delivery method later this year, which will allow for even more youth in farming, ranching and rural communities access to our programs. Throughout 2021, the delivery method and its respective training went through extensive pilot testing. We are looking forward to being able to share this opportunity with even more individuals in the coming months.
It is an exciting time for the Progressive Agriculture Foundation and the Progressive Agriculture Safety Day (R) programs as we continue to evolve with the safety and health needs of children in our farming, ranching and rural communities. We sadly know that our job is not over and will continue to strive for the day when no child becomes ill or gets injured, or dies due to an agriculture-related incident.
FIND US ONLINE:
-- Visit progressiveag.org, or call us at 888-257-3529.
-- Send a child to a Safety Day by donating today. Text SAFETYDAY to 44321.
-- The Progressive Agriculture Foundation (PAF) is proud to be recognized as a Better Business Bureau Accredited Charity. Additionally, PAF has a 3-star rating with Charity Navigator and was awarded a Platinum Seal of Transparency with GuideStar. All donations are tax-deductible.
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