Children at primary schools in the South West region of the UK can now learn about country life and farm safety with the help of rural mutual insurance firm Cornish Mutual. The 'FarmSafe' initiative was launched by ICMIF member Cornish Mutual to raise awareness of health and safety issues and reduce the number of deaths and injuries on farms in the area.
A recent example of this was on Monday 1 October when around 360 pupils at Stanley Green School in Dorset took part in a special 'FarmSafe' assembly which was delivered by farm safety expert and qualified teacher Jason Cole.
Through a lively presentation, and with the help of Cornish Mutual's life-size cow “Maizie Mootual”, children learnt about topics including farm safety, safety around animals and the UK Countryside Code.
The initiative includes 'FarmSafe for Schools', a free online teaching resource aimed at children aged between 5 and 11. Developed by educational experts and health and safety consultants the 'FarmSafe for Schools' materials are linked to the UK primary schools official curriculum.
Local schools were invited to enter an online prize draw to win the free farm safety lesson from Jason Cole.
Nina Charman, Science Co-ordinator at the school, was delighted to have been chosen and said: "It was really exciting for the students to have Jason come in and talk about health and safety in the countryside...it also fits in well with our SMSC (spiritual, moral, social and cultural) development programme”.
As part of the FarmSafe initiative, Cornish Mutual has produced a range of teaching materials including PowerPoint presentations and accompanying worksheets covering six key health and safety topics.
Alan Goddard, Managing Director of Cornish Mutual, added: "When it comes to big issues such as health and safety on farms and in the countryside in Dorset, it is really important to reach children at a young age, particularly when they live in urban areas and don't have that much experience of life in the countryside. These really are formative years for youngsters and a time when they can benefit most from what they learn at school and in the classroom. We are delighted to be working with Jason on the 'FarmSafe for Schools' project and proud that Cornish Mutual is supporting such as worthwhile initiative."