Meghan Bennett teaches students how to administer shots properly.

Farm Safety for Just Kids at work in Ohio

With harvest season quickly approaching, farmers must remember to keep farm safety at the forefront, especially when there are children near. Hundreds of children are involved in agricultural-related accidents each year.

Farm Safety for Just Kids is an organization founded upon the mission of promoting a safe farm environment to prevent health hazards, injuries, and fatalities to children and youth.

“It is our main goal to decrease the number of kids that are involved in agricultural accidents throughout our communities and the nation. Even if that means just saving one life, then we have done our job for the day. One accident is enough to have a program,” said Meghan Bennett, the Ohio Outreach Coordinator. “Ohio is the heartland of our country and we have a lot of agriculture and a lot of children growing up in agriculture. We are proud to have so many kids involved, but we need to step back and make sure that when we are involved with agriculture we are doing so safely.” LHS Bio

Under the generous sponsorship of Cargill, Bennett of Shelby County is traveling the state to provide free programs to community youth groups, 4-H clubs, high schools, town festivals, and preschools. Her interactive programs can teach youth about animal safety, ATV safety, chemical safety, and grain bin safety, just to highlight a few of her main topics. Bennett tailors each presentation to fit the group’s personal request.

“If I had to pick a favorite topic, I really enjoy teaching kids how to give their livestock a shot properly,” Bennett said. “I use fruit and syringes with food coloring for the kids to practice so they can see the different between subcutaneous and intramuscular shots.”

Bennett also reminds her students the importance of practicing the buddy system on the farm.

“We like to joke that buddy systems are only for the very young, but the buddy system is very important in agriculture, no matter what age you are. Whether you are working with livestock or in the grain bin, it is helpful to have someone outside watching in case something would go wrong.”
Those interested in inviting Bennett to teach about Farm Safety for Just Kids to a local youth group can contact her at Bennett.875@osu.edu or 937-214-6810. Fiber Show1

Farm Safety for Just Kids started in the fall of 1986 after 11-year-old Keith Algreen suffocated in a gravity flow wagon while helping with harvest on his parent’s farm in rural Iowa. Keith’s mother Marilyn Adams was helping her daughter with an FFA farm safety project when she discovered there were hundreds of tragic stories like Keith’s. Marilyn founded Farm Safety for Just Kids the following year, and it has grown tremendously since its early beginning in Marilyn’s spare room. The organization is now an international 501(c)3 non-profit.

 

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