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Teagasc and DAFM Launch a New Training Web Portal called OPT-IN

Teagasc has developed a new web portal known as “Opt-In” which provides information in relation to employment related skills development and diversification opportunities for rural families. The Portal has been initially developed for two pilot counties, namely Limerick and Tipperary. The portal was launched at the National Ploughing Championships by Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine, Andrew Doyle TD.

Opt-In is a deliverable under the Commission for Economic Development of Rural Areas (CEDRA) implementation programme funded by the Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine. The Portal was commissioned following growing concerns in rural areas about informing the public about opportunities in relation to up-skilling and personal development prospects.

Mary Ryan from Teagasc said: “The web Portal comprises dynamic content containing regularly updated content regarding skills training, diversification and business development opportunities, provided to rural families by different providers including; LEO’s, ETB’s, Local Development Companies, Skillnets and Teagasc in the counties of Limerick and Tipperary. The Opt-In Portal also contains static content containing general advice for rural families in relation to training, skills development, business development and diversification opportunities

Speaking at the launch Minister Andrew Doyle said: “We want every farmer and rural dweller in Ireland to be in the strongest position that they can be. There is a huge amount of untapped potential in rural Ireland and a wide range of reasons for developing the Opt-In Web Portal. The collective nature of this initiative is ambitious in its objective and requires the commitment and dedication of all the various agencies contributing to the information pool. I warmly welcome this pilot initiative and hope it will be the start of greater things to come.”

Barry Caslin from Teagasc said: “The problems affecting rural dwellers are now so extreme with declining farm gate prices  and their ability to survive economically has put an unprecedented strain on these businesses. Opt-In will help equip rural dwellers with the information on training and up skilling opportunities to help them survive, and importantly to make the right choices for themselves and their families.”

From today it is possible for the public to register with Opt-In and view training opportunities with the various agencies in Limerick and Tipperary. It is also possible to receive notifications by SMS, Email, Facebook or Twitter on course categories which are of special interest. To find out more about Opt-In log in to www.opt-in.ie