The Farmer Network has had a good response to its request for people to join the newly created Farm Labour Emergency Support Scheme (FLESS). A number of people have already offered their services to help in an emergency situation on farms in Cumbria and The Yorkshire Dales, some paid, some willing to volunteer. The need for extra support may be caused by the farmer, their family or other key workers being absent from the farm.
Some of the offers are from experienced farm workers supplying skilled, paid services. They are capable of lambing, calving, milking, dry-stone walling, tractor driving, farm paperwork etc. Some are volunteers with relevant experience such as veterinary or working on their home farms. Others have no direct farming experience but are happy to help with supervised tasks or collections and deliveries.
Adam Day said: “Many farmers have expressed fears, should they or their workers be unable to work. This scheme provides reassurance that in an emergency, whatever the situation, somebody will be there to help”.
“If the situation should arise in the coming days or weeks, Mr Day urged farmers to immediately ring the Network office on 01768 868615 or email [email protected] to see if there are people in their area with the right level of skill or experience to help them. He also encouraged more people thinking of joining the scheme to look at the Farmer Network website, saying “ We want to increase the list of workers who are offering paid or volunteer services, so that through FLESS we can help farmers to find help as soon as possible.
“We are also available to help farmers with contingency planning before things get difficult and for up to date information about other types of recovery support for farming businesses. Information on all of this, templates and forms to download are available on the Farmer Network website www.thefarmernetwork.co.uk.”