Ottawa, ON, October 8, 2014 – The Canadian Agricultural Safety Association (CASA) is proud to launch the application phase of the Back to Ag Program. The Back to Ag Program is the result of a partnership between CASA, Farm Credit Canada (FCC) and the Rick Hansen Foundation (RHF).

“Every year, there are Canadian farmers who experience a life-altering injury, such as paralysis or lost limbs,” says Rick Hansen, CEO of the Rick Hansen Foundation. “They often need specialized equipment or adaptive technology to return to the occupation they love. We’re thrilled to partner in this incredible program to help farmers get back to work.”

The Back to Ag Program will provide up to $10,000 to a successful applicant to support the cost of adaptive technology for farmers and agricultural workers who have experienced a traumatic injury.

“CASA remains dedicated to making the agricultural sector a safe place to work and live by helping producers see and manage risks in their workplace,” says Marcel Hacault, CASA’s Executive Director. “However some farmers must leave agriculture all together when they experience a traumatic injury. This program will help producers get back to doing what they love – farming.”

To kick-start the program, FCC donated $100,000 to the Back to Ag Program following a successful two-week social media campaign earlier this year. Individuals and other organizations also donated to the Back to Ag Program through both the RHF and the FarmSafe Foundation.

“FCC supports projects and initiatives that make positive changes in the communities where our customers live and work across Canada,” said Brenda Stasuik, FCC’s director of strategy, government relations and corporate social responsibility. “The Back to Ag Program will help injured farmers realize their full potential.”

Applications for the Back to Ag Program will be accepted from October 8 to November 28, 2014. Canadian residents who are 18 years or older, have experienced a life altering injury and are able to show their need and demonstrate how the adaptive technology will help them return to work on the farm are eligible to apply. The adaptive technology can come in the form of medical devices or accessibility tools like ramps or lifts or any other technology that will allow the producer in return to farm work.

Applicants are encouraged to visit casa-acsa.ca/BacktoAg, email backtoag@casa-acsa.ca or call CASA at 877 452 2272 for more information and application forms.

The Canadian Agricultural Safety Association is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to improving the health and safety of farmers, their families and agricultural workers. CASA is funded in part by Growing Forward 2, a federal, provincial and territorial initiative and receives additional support from the agricultural and corporate sectors including: Farm Credit Canada, the Progressive Agriculture Foundation, CHS and TransCanada Corporation. For more information, visit www.casa-acsa.ca, find us on Facebook or LinkedIn or follow us on Twitter @planfarmsafety.

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For more information, please contact:

Robin Anderson

Communications Officer

204-275-8870

randerson@casa-acsa.ca