Embrace Farm, the bereavement support group for those affected by farm accidents, is to extend its network with a new group for Clare, Limerick and Tipperary.
An information night on the network will be held on Thursday, April 7, at the Castle Oaks Hotel in Castleconnell, Co. Limerick.
It will be the fifth branch of the support group nationwide and will meet regularly provide invaluable support to families who have had to deal with tragic deaths and serious injury arising from farm incidents.
Angela Hogan, host of the meeting, will bring her own experience of the benefits of participating in a network, having joined the very first support group in the midlands two years ago to help her deal with the aftermath of her partner Brendan’s death in a tragic accident in 2011.
"Farm accidents can happen in the blink of an eye as I and many, many others unfortunately can testify."
In a moment the lives of people are changed forever and afterwards you have no choice but to somehow try and soldier on.
"I found myself in such a position in 2011 when Brendan lost his life and it changed my and our two children’s lives forever.
"My and Brendan’s family and friends have been incredible support but I have really found the Embrace Farm support group meetings hugely helpful in helping me come to terms with it all.
"Talking to other people who have either suffered the same dreadful experience or been affected by non-fatal accidents really helps. There’s fantastic solidarity in such a network and it’s not alone the emotional support you get but practical support also."
Hogan said that the information night is being held with a view to establishing a support group in the mid-west.
Every single county in the country has been affected by farm accidents over recent years but I could not emphasise enough the value of sharing your stories with others.
The support network was founded by Co. Laois farmer Brian Rohan after his father Liam died following a farm accident in 2012 and has been providing bereavement support for farm families who have, like Brian and Angela, lost a loved one or suffered serious injury in a farming accident.
Having started out with a Laois based support group, it has now established other groups in Galway and Cork and Mullingar.
Brian Rohan said that Embrace Farm has had a lot of requests across the country to establish new groups and this will be the fifth.
"It makes a huge difference to people to be able to share their woes so we would really ask people who are affected to join us next week in Castleconnell for a chat and a cup of tea."