Rural Roadshow success in Coleraine

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Rural and farming charity, Rural Support, along with CSR partner, Simple Power, recently rolled into the Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council area for the ‘Rural Support Roadshow – Call to Action’ at the Coleraine Town Hall, to discuss the charity and the work that it does in local council areas.

As part of a series of roadshows planned across Northern Ireland, Rural Support visited Coleraine on Wednesday 28 th September to reach out to the neighbouring Causeway Coast and Glens area.

The event was attended by members of the farming and rural community, such as Sean McAuley and William Taylor from Farmers for Action, and local businesses

and council ministers, including Maurice Bradley MLA and Adrian McQuillan MLA, and UUP Councillors Joan Baird and William McCandless. The attendees, which also included agriculture representatives from local banks, met with Rural Support representatives to discuss ways in which the charity can assist farmers and rural dwellers in the area.

Supported by the charity’s CSR partner, local wind energy company, Simple Power, the event presented the support services on offer from the charity through their dedicated helpline and various programmes such as Social Farming and on farm business support.

In light of recent research conducted by Rural Support investigating the health and social effects of the agricultural downturn in Northern Ireland, the team presented evidence detailing key areas of concern in the farming sector such as financial pressure and, as a result, mental health issues. Many of the attendees pledged their support to the charity and committed to taking action to further Rural Support’s cause and services.

Rural Support Chief Executive, Jude McCann, commented: “We are delighted with the positive response we received to the ‘Rural Support Roadshow – Call to Action’ in the Causeway Coast and Glens council area. As our recent research revealed, there is mounting pressure on farmers and new challenges facing the rural community and therefore the need for our services is greater than ever. We value the opportunity to discuss at grassroots level how we can help and cater our services to all farming communities across Northern Ireland.

“We appreciate the residents, councillors, businesses and members of the rural and farming community in the local area taking the time to attend the Roadshow event and meeting with us to learn more about the charity. Not only were we able to promote the charity and the work that we do, but we gained valuable insight into how we can further assist farmers and rural dwellers in the area.

“We would like to thank everyone that attended and particularly those who engaged and have outwardly pledged to take up our call to action and support Rural Support and the services we offer. Whether this support is financial assistance, awareness-building activities, volunteering or fundraising efforts, it all helps to improve our offering and increase uptake of our services at a time when it is so greatly needed.”

Local wind energy company, Simple Power, has been working with the charity to help deliver its much-needed support service to farming and rural communities throughout Northern Ireland by providing financial support and participating in joint fundraising and awareness building activities throughout the farming calendar.

Simple Power Chief Executive, Philip Rainey said: “As partners to the farming and agricultural community, we are acutely aware of the difficulties they face and believe that the charity plays a vital role in serving the farming community. The Roadshow has been a great opportunity to showcase the important services the charity offers but also for Rural Support to outline where the team may need assistance and ask for the communities support. We are very proud of our partnership with Rural Support and look forward to continuing our working relationship and highlighting its message throughout Northern Ireland.”

If you are interested in finding out more about volunteering opportunities with Rural Support and how you can help in your local area, please contact Melissa Wylie on 028 8676 0040.