Development potential in the Care Farming sector

In order to gain a better understanding of Care Farming (the provision of social services in farming) and to make better use of existing potential, Agroscope Reckenholz-Tänikon ART Research Station and the Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW) conducted three workshops with experts from a wide variety of professional fields in 2010. The workshop participants agreed that Care Farming has great potential (additional sideline, expansion of the welfare and health system among other things). Targeted measures, including the following, could help to utilize it better: • more transparency between all participants is required: disclosure of requirements, remuneration, arrangements and responsibilities; • better communication and networking is needed between all those involved in social services; • a central coordination office could be a helpful tool in tapping potential; • the development of a quality assurance system is a central tool; • New forms and simplification of financing models for the social services system would be desirable. The participants agreed on the central importance of the desired high quality of services and the requirement to put the care recipient’s needs first. Organisation of the Care Farming sector is proving to be extremely complex, multilayered and geographically very uneven.

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