The Chief Executive of the Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI), Robert Kidd, has launched the 'Avoid Harm on the Farm' child safety 2021 calendar which will be distributed through primary schools to 42,000 rural homes across Northern Ireland.

In previous years HSENI staff would have visited rural primary schools throughout Northern Ireland in the run-up to the summer holidays; delivering farm safety messages and encouraging pupils to enter HSENI’s 'Avoid Harm on the Farm' calendar competition.

Unfortunately this year, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, personal visits were not possible, however, the poster competition continued on a virtual platform.

Throughout the summer months primary school pupils were encouraged to submit their entries online. Each of the weekly winners received a £30 gift voucher and their entry features in the calendar.

Speaking at the launch which took place at Carr Primary School in Lisburn, HSENI chief executive Robert Kidd said:

"Almost 600 children entered our competition this year and a big 'thank-you' goes to each of them. We are also enormously grateful to primary schools across Northern Ireland for their continued support.

Working together with schools and children, the annual farm safety calendar is now a familiar sight in classrooms and rural homes and it acts as a daily reminder of the very real dangers that exist for everyone when on a farm.

Primary school children submitted a hand-painted or hand-drawn picture relating to a key farm safety topic. In their entries they highlighted some of the many hazards involved when working with animals, slurry, equipment and the risks of working at height.

'Avoid Harm on the Farm' poster competition winners:
Week 1: Méabh Devine, aged 9, St Colmcille’s Primary School, Claudy;
Week 2: Marykate Sloan, aged 5, Holy Cross Primary School, Atticall;
Week 3: Wesley Baird, aged 9, Strabane Primary School, Strabane;
Week 4: Beth McAuley, aged 6, Woodburn Primary School, Carrickfergus;
Week 5: Leah O’Hagan, aged 11, Knocknagin Primary School, Desertmartin;
Week 6: Eli Irvine, aged 9, Lisbellaw Primary School, Enniskillen;
Week 7: Daniel Glenn, aged 8, Carr Primary School, Lisburn;
Week 8: Joshua Totten, aged 7, Kells and Connor Primary School, Kells;
Week 9: Maria Devine, aged 8, St Mary’s Primary School, Barr;
Week 10: Charlie Connolly, aged 6, Carrickmannon Primary School, Newtownards;
Week 11: Harvey Graydon, aged 7, Fivemiletown Primary School;
Week 12: Romaine Killough, aged 11, Carnalbanagh Primary School, Ballymena.