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NEWS RELEASE

USDA Grants Aid Farmers With Disabilities

Release No. 0213.03

Alisa Harrison (202) 720-4623
Marti Asner (202) 720-8188

WASHINGTON, June 18, 2003—Agriculture Secretary Ann M. Veneman has announced the award of more than $3.5 million in grants to 24 states for staffing and operating AgrAbility projects. AgrAbility educates and assists farmers with disabilities through Extension programs in collaboration with disability service providers.

“These grants and the local programs they support help farmers with disabilities contribute to the agricultural community and economy,” said Veneman.

Since initial funding in 1991, USDA’s Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service (CSREES) has awarded grants to over 30 states resulting in on-farm assistance to over 10,000 farmers while educating thousands of professionals on how to accommodate disabilities in agriculture. Eligible grant applicants include land grant universities with non-profit disability organization partners. The typical award provides $150,000 per year for up to four years.

Grants this year were awarded to:

· University of California, Davis
· Colorado State University, Fort Collins
· University of Delaware, Newark
· Iowa State University, Ames
· University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
· Purdue University (IN), West Lafayette
· Kansas State University, Manhattan
· University of Kentucky, Lexington
· Michigan State University, East Lansing
· University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
· Mississippi State University
· University of Missouri, Columbia
· University of Nebraska, Lincoln
· Cornell University (NY), Ithaca
· Oklahoma State University, Stillwater
· Pennsylvania State University, University Park
· South Dakota State University, Brookings
· University of Tennessee, Knoxville
· Texas A&M University, College Station
· Utah State University, Logan
· University of Vermont, Burlington
· Virginia Polytechnic Institute, Blacksburg
· West Virginia University, Morgantown
· University of Wisconsin, Madison

AgrAbility provides on-site technical assistance in adapting and using farm equipment and tools and on modifying farm operations and buildings. The program also provides agriculture-based education to help prevent further injury and disability. More information on the AgrAbility program can be found at: http://www.agrabilityproject.org/.

 
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