Feds spending $191,995 on ‘farm theater’

The federal government is spending nearly $200,000 to teach older farmers about safety using “reader’s theater.”

“Farm Theater: A Novel Safety Strategy Approach for Agricultural Communities” is a new project funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The University of Kentucky began the four-year study in September.

“Excessive worker injury rates continue in agriculture,” the grant for the project begins. “Adult and senior farmers in the Southern U.S. region experience the highest occurrence of agricultural occupational injury and mortality in the nation.”

“In this community-based, translational intervention effectiveness research study, we will work with established farm community organizations in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Mississippi, to develop and test a novel intervention: didactic reader’s theater, with 450 adult and senior farmers, and their family members, to positively change farm work culture and safety behavior,” the grant said.

Reader’s theater productions rely on voice acting, and generally use no sets or props. The study is still costing $191,995 for the first year.

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