Rural Affairs

Farmers urged to attend Farm Strong initiative at marts

Victoria Ross (Rural Support), Christina Faulkner (Farm Families Health Checks), Jim Henning (Rural Chaplaincy), David Brown (UFU president), Camilla Mackey (HSENI), Harry Burke (owner – Burkes of Cornascriebe), Rachel Millar (UFU), Simon Walsh (Rural Chaplaincy), David Johnston (Rural Chaplaincy) and in the tractor Kenny Hanna (Rural Chaplaincy).

Farmers and farm families across Northern Ireland are invited to attend ‘Mission: Farm Strong’ at their local mart this February and March.

These are awareness events for all members of the farming community to encourage them to carefully consider their physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing and are supported by the Rural Chaplaincy, Farm Families Health Checks, Health and Safety Executive NI, Rural Support, Ulster Farmers’ Union and the Northern Ireland Agri-Rural Health Forum.

At the marts, farmers and farm families can meet with representatives from Ulster Farmers’ Union, Health & Safety Executive NI, Rural Support and the Northern Ireland Agri-Rural Health Forum. Individuals will also be able to avail of free blood pressure checks which will be provided by the Farm Families Health Check Van. Marts that are participating in the ‘Mission: Farm Strong’ events from 10.30am – close are:

  • Wednesday 21 Feb – Kilrea Mart
  • Thursday 22 Feb – Enniskillen Mart
  • Friday 23 Feb – Ballymena Mart
  • Saturday 24 Feb – Clogher Mart
  • Friday 1 March – Rathfriland Mart
  • Saturday 2 March – Markethill Mart

Dr Rebecca Orr, Rural GP and chair of the Northern Ireland Agri-Rural Health Forum said, “This is an excellent opportunity for the farming community to avail of in support of their own physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing. Given that blood pressure checks will be performed at each mart we have chosen to fundraise for the British Heart Foundation. This amazing charity is doing great work across Northern Ireland and we have had the pleasure of partnering with them on our recent health campaign. I would encourage all members of the farming family to avail of ‘Mission: Farm Strong’ in support of a stronger, healthier and more resilient farming community.”

If you would like more information in support of your health and wellbeing, please visit the NI Farm Support hub at or telephone their Support Line on Freephone 0800 138 1678 available Monday – Friday 9am-9pm. You can also call with the nurses at the Farm Families Health Checks van at your local participating mart.