The Mid-Atlantic Agrability Project (MAAP) is part of a national program sponsored by the USDA that promotes independence of farmers, watermen, loggers and poultry growers who want to continue to farm despite a disabling or health condition.
Agriculture is considered one of the most hazardous occupations in the United States. According to the National Safety Council, annually, there are 850 deaths and 140,000 disabling injuries.
When disability strikes a farm family, everything changes, except perhaps the desire to continue farming. These disabilities may include an amputation, arthritis, chronic back pain, respiratory problems, stress, spinal cord injury and other conditions.
Recognizing that drive and the critical need for farmers, the National AgrAbility Project was established with approval of the 1990 Farm Bill. The goal is to inform, educate and assist farmers and farm workers with disabilities as well as their families, so they can continue to lead successful careers in agriculture and contribute to their families, communities and our nation.
Though farming is physically demanding, modern technology can make it possible for a farmer with a physical limitation or health condition to stay on the farm and keep working. ArgAbility can make it happen by:
- Assessing the workplace
- Recommending equipment modifications
- Loaning assistive technologies and equipment
- Referring families to local service providers
- Identifying funding sources
- And much more
The Mid-Atlantic AgrAbility Project brings together experts and many partners to provide services, education, and support for farmers and their families. Currently we have support from the University of Delaware, University of Maryland and Rutgers University in collaboration with several non-profit disability and health organizations and over 25 associate partners who are assisting us in supporting farmers.