2017 Young Farming Champions announced and the journey begins

Last weekend bought the new crop of Art4Agriculture Young Farming Champions together in Sydney with members of our alumni for the first Young Farming Champions workshop of 2017.

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The 2017 Young Farming Champions – top row L to R Sam Wan, Emma Longworth, Meg Rice, Joe Banks, Hamish McGrath, Nellie Evans, Jess Lehmann, Caitlin Heppner Bottom Row L to R Deanna Johnston, Annicka Brosnan, Katherine Bain, Lucy Collingridge

The Young Farming Champions program seeks out and trains our dynamic, best and brightest young agricultural professionals. We develop their skills to enable them to share their ideas, dreams and motivations with their host schools as part of The Archibull Prize . The program fosters vibrant conversations and allows the Young Farming Champions and young people they engage with in schools to work together to develop ways to co-create a bright future for Australia.

Part of Art4Agriculture’s mission is to encourage a new culture where Australian agriculture has a strong focus on investing in its people. A culture that provides our farmers with the skills, knowledge, confidence and connections to move to a new era of communication and collaboration

At Art4Agriculture we are passionate about collaboration and developing partnerships with other providers, so that there is a seamless professional development program for young people. Making the program offering flexible allows young people to dip in and out depending on their life and professional context at the time, because not everybody’s life progresses at the same rate or in the same linear fashion.

We believe partnerships and collaboration are the solution to many of the challenges in agriculture. Just imagine what we could achieve if we all worked together across sectors, across industries, across communities to pool resources, pool thinking, pool skills, to enhance, for the benefit of all. So you can see why we are over the moon that our mission for collaboration has gained huge momentum in 2017 not only allowing us to continue to train young people to tell agriculture’s story as well as support our alumni on the next stage of their leadership development

This year sees the NSW Government and Local Land Services combining with our industry partners to support the 2017 Young Farming Champions on their journey. Thanks to Aussie Farmers Foundation and two anonymous donors we were also able to add three independent scholarships

Thanks to the support of Aussie Farmers Foundation, Australian Wool Innovation, Cotton Research and Development Corporation  and alumni employers Elders, AGnVET and Landmark we are able to offer workshops for our alumni that they have identified meet their personal and profession development needs.

YFC Alumni  (6).jpg  YFC Alumni know that no matter how big the challenges they face, there is always time for some lighthearted moments . L to R Laura Phelps, Jo Newton, Dione Howard, Dwayne Schubert, Tayla Field, Peta Bradley, Sharna Holman, Casey Onus

WATCH THIS SPACE. We cant wait to share with you our latest video on “Sharing the Wool Story” hosted by Dione Howard and Peta Bradley

IMG_9333.JPG Peta Bradley – The Lady in Red born to walk, talk, wear and spruik wool 

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It was so rewarding for our team to hear both Dione and Peta say they weren’t the least bit nervous about making this video – “its pretty easy to talk about something you love so much and want to share your love of wool with the world’

What the alumni are saying about our new program offering

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Young Farming Champion Ben Egan is the face of a campaign urging farmers to fill in a survey that will track the training needs of the farm sector.

Ben Egan The Land

Quoting the hard hitting  blog from Agricultural Appointments,

It has been widely acknowledged that Australia faces critical skills shortages in the agribusiness sector according to a raft of government enquiries, a growing chorus of academic reports and just about anyone who has ever tried to find highly-skilled candidates for agribusiness job vacancies.

It’s not overstating the case to suggest that these critical shortages threaten the ability of the agricultural industry to continue to grow and respond to rising global demand for food and agricultural services.

So where are the key shortages and what are the consequences of not addressing them? See the article here to find out where 

Young Farming Champion Ben Egan recently feature in The Land here  and on Win News here  is calling on farmers in the cropping sector to  fill in this survey

Ben who is a cotton and grain grower believes there is a critical training gap in his industry with limited courses available for those working at ‘paddock level’.

An initiative of the New South Wales Government in partnership with the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) and Cotton Australia has allocated $14.7 million over three years to increase staff skill levels and attract newcomers to the grains and cotton industries.

The GRDC and Cotton Australia are now conducting an industry-wide training needs survey to help track the immediate and future training needs of growers, on-farm staff and the broader industry. The results of this survey will inform the rollout of the AgSkilled project across NSW.

Ben is a cotton and gain grower believes there is a critical training gap in his industry with limited courses available for those working at ‘paddock level’.

The young grower is farm manager at Kiameron Pastoral Company, an 8000 acre family operation with 1750acresof irrigated cultivation, 1400 acres of dryland farming and 4850acres of grazing country.

At Kiameron we rely heavily on backpackers and casual labour, but finding people with the skillsets we need can be a challenge. 

I am constantly looking for opportunities for both my permanent and casual staff to develop and improve their skills and knowledge.

It seems as though we can get access to middle management through university training, but we struggle a lot with getting skilled assistance in that leading hand, irrigation worker type space,” 

I have undertaken further training at TAFE, but better training across all levels of the cotton and grains industry could really drive our productivity and profitability.” Ben  said.

Ben is now encouraging others involved in the grains and cotton sectors to have their say about what training is needed to future proof the grains and cotton industries as part of a new initiative called AgSkilled.

Please get behind this excellent initiative by having your say in the survey found here 

 

Hannah Wandel –  disrupting the status quo on her quest to ensure all girls can reach their potential

Today our guest blogger is Hannah Wandel who will be our inspirational guest speaker at our next Young Farming Champions workshop

Hannah Wandel 2017.jpg Hannah  is the founder of Country to Canberra.  She is a young woman with a passion for gender equality and is disrupting the status quo and on a quest to ensure all girls can reach their potential. In the Victorian era women were expected to be educated in order to entertain: pouring tea without dripping was more important than ideas. Gender equality has come a long way since the Victorian era but as Hannah acknowledges there is still a long way to go

This is Hannah’s story ……….

On countless cold, blustering winter’s days, I remember fixing fences on our farm with my two older sisters. We were just kids, but my parents were adamant that we were capable and able to do anything we set out minds to.

Whether it was farming, schoolwork or sports, as three young rural women, we were always supported (and in the case of the detested fencing, strongly encouraged!) to achieve our goals.

I was privileged to have this upbringing, but I quickly learnt that this wasn’t always the norm. Friends of mine often didn’t have a choice but to stay inside while their brothers worked the land. They weren’t encouraged to study their passions, and often didn’t have the support, or crucially, the self-belief to access the opportunities they desired. Too many times, other people tore them down, and stereotypes crept through.

But it was throughout university, that the concept of gender inequality really hit home. I was working as a journalist during the reign of Australia’s first-ever female Prime Minister, and whether you’re a fan of her politics or not, most can agree that Julia Gillard was treated dismally. Whether it was her hair, her boyfriend or her outfit choices, the Prime Minister’s leadership capabilities were consistently belittled.

Sadly, when I looked further afield, my concerns only increased. Just 30 per cent of Australia’s federal politicians were female, we had an 18 per cent gender pay gap (now 16 percent), and more men called Peter were running Australia’s ASX 200 companies than women altogether.

At a similar time, I grew increasingly concerned about rural and remote education. Passionate about country communities thriving and succeeding, I was shocked to hear that the more remote a student gets, the worse attitudes to schooling and school completion rates are. Distance, time and funding barriers were preventing rural kids from accessing the education and career opportunities they deserved.

Pairing these issues together, I saw a niche group of young women in rural Australia needing additional support. I felt a call-to-action, and a desire to help these young women succeed. So I had an idea, and that idea was Country to Canberra.

C2C - Hannah Speech

Founded in 2014, Country to Canberra is a volunteer-driven nationwide not-for-profit organisation that empowers young rural women to reach their leadership potential. Our award-winning programs provide leadership training, inspire self-belief and connect teenage girls with mentors and role models. From the ABC to WIN News, we’ve been featured in hundreds of media outlets and have made a huge difference in scores of girls’ lives. Our flagship program is a national leadership competition, where winners are awarded with a ‘Power Trip’ to the ACT to meet CEOs, Ministers, receive leadership and public speaking training from the likes of TEDx, formal mentorship and more.

C2C - Girls Jumping

We know the impact strong female role models have on young women’s leadership aspirations. Recently, the New York Times found that nearly a quarter of teenage girls said Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential candidacy encouraged them to seek leadership positions. From the Foreign Minister Julie Bishop to Deputy Opposition Leader Tanya Plibersek, our Power Trip connects girls to powerful female leaders, and equips winners with skills and knowledge to share widely in their local communities.

Kaitlin Bell & Julie Bishop at Powerful Women's Breakfast - 2016

In addition to our Leadership Competition and Power Trip, we mentor and facilitate a ‘Blogger Team’ of young women, giving them a platform to discuss key issues and showcase their talents. Excitingly, we have also just won Holden and SBS’s first-ever grant to run our ‘Project Empower’ leadership workshops in rural and remote schools across Australia. We’ll be traveling to every state and territory to reach as many students as possible to ensure all young women know their self-worth, know how to identify and discuss equality issues, and are empowered to achieve their dreams. This is a game-changer for Country to Canberra, and will give us an ability to reach more young women and communities than ever before.

Caitlin Heppner -2015

Personally, I put my heart and soul into Country to Canberra. From seeking grants and sponsorships to managing social media accounts, I run Country to Canberra pro bono and lead a team of 13 volunteers, while also working full-time at the Department of Prime Minister & Cabinet. Plus, like most volunteers, my passion has pulled me into other great initiatives, and I am also a Board Director at YWCA Canberra, a Global Shaper through the World Economic Forum and a Director of the National Rural Women’s Coalition.

Nooria Muradi - 2015

It can be tiring, but anytime I even begin to feel an ounce of fatigue, I remember the incredible impact we have had on so many young rural women. I muse about our Power trip winner Ellecha, who told me that she has never had anyone believe in her the way Country to Canberra did. I think about Nooria, who migrated from Afghanistan to Alice Springs as a child, who says that Country to Canberra changed her life forever. But I also think about the girls who were told ‘to stay in the kitchen’ instead of play football, as recounted by our Teen Blogger Hannah, and I ponder a 2015 survey by Plan International and Our Watch, which found that one-third of young women believed it would be easier to secure their “dream job” in Australia if they were male. This motivates me to continue striving to create change, and build pathways for girls to thrive.

Whether its farming or fixing fences, teaching, politics, or something entirely new, Country to Canberra is proactive about disrupting the status quo and ensuring all girls can reach their potential. In five, 10 or 15 years time, we don’t want any young women to live in a world where women are subject to structural bias. We don’t want them to earn less compared to their male counterparts and we don’t want women to be dying at the hands of their partners. We want them to thrive on an even playing field, and I genuinely believe it’s our contemporary duty to build it.

_ 2017 Picture You in Agriculture Supporting Partners

 

 

Young Farming Champion Sam Coggins a global changemaker.

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This week Young Farming Champion Sam Coggins was invited to share his ideas on a global stage as one of three young Australians selected to participate in the Youth Ag_Summit in Brussels 

Ten years ago a very small team came together to form the organisation that is now known as Picture You in Agriculture.

We had a vision to:

  • Create a national network of young farmers promoting agriculture
  • Have an Australian community proud of our farmers
  • Develop young people to thrive in business and in life

Out of this vision The Archibull Prize and Young Farming Champions  (YFC) programs were born and our 2016 external independent evaluation of both programs showed we are certainly ticking all these boxes and some.

We then added “foster a network of globally connected thought leaders in agriculture and sustainability” to our vision.

Our highest purpose is to show young people in agriculture that they can achieve amazing things if they identify their core values, focus on doing what they love, surround themselves with people they can learn from and ask for help when they need it. We exist to help young people in agriculture learn to do extraordinary things and thrive in life and business

The YFC journey starts with learning the skills and tools to go into schools in a safe environment as the face of youth in agriculture for The Archibull Prize. The YFC program finds ways to continue to expose participants to global ideas and gives them skills and knowledge to participant in discussions on the world stage. This week Young Farming Champion Sam Coggins was invited to share his ideas on a global stage as one of three young Australians selected to participate in the Youth Ag_Summit in Brussels

Visit the Youth Ag-Summit website here 

Together with Yang-Ming Goh & Christopher Young, Sam will bring a fresh perspective to the challenge food security during the conference. Sam’s application essay included the need for values based communication to address the seemingly universal stigmas surrounding genetic modification . Read more here 

“At one of the Young Farming Champions workshops, facilitator Greg Mills challenged us to think about how the broader community perceived agriculture and the people in agriculture. Greg introduced ‘values-based communication’ as way to develop trust between community members and those of us who see our future in agriculture. By demonstrating as agriculturists, we share their values and we care about what they care about, we can demonstrate that we are the type of people they can trust to look after our animals, our people and the planet.

Greg’s presentation really stuck with me and got me thinking about how this approach could be applied to break down the stigmas surrounding genetic modification and careers in agriculture. These reflections formed the basis of my application to be part of the Bayer Youth Ag Summit in Belgium and I was honoured to be selected.

Thank you, Greg and Young Farming Champions!”

Sam is a great example of how the YFC program challenges people to think differently and then gives them the skills and mentorship to participate at the next level to build on these new ideas. A key success factor is that some of our mentors & trainers come from non-traditional backgrounds and bring new perspectives and provide an expanding world view to the YFC

Speaking of Young Farming Champions  Global Communicators succeeding on the world stage a huge congratulations to YFC Casey Onus and her UNE teamates for third place at the International  IFAMA contest in Miami.  On top of that, UNE pulled of first place with their team Bec Clapperton, Max Laurie and Sarah Wall

 

Casey and the IFARMA team

Casey  Onus (far left) with the UNE IFAMA team 

Every decision you make about who you let join your team and the standard you hold gets viewed through the lens of your values. 

_ 2017 Picture You in Agriculture Supporting Partners

Elders joins the Art4Agriculture team to support rising leader Emma Ayliffe

We would like to welcome Elders to the Art4Agriculture team. Elders will be joining the Cotton Research and Development Corporation to support Emma Ayliffe to undertake advanced training as part of the Young Farming Champions program

“Emma has a unique role within Elders,. Half of it is doing research, development and extension and the other half is agronomy. Because Emma is off farm she understands the production side of things in the field, and by doing trials the growers are getting the research done on their farm. It also works well for the ag-tech companies because if they get a new product we can straight away send it to our client base. Clients seem to get the uptake of the product quicker because of Emma’s role. She’s a self-starter, she’s got plenty of drive to make things happen, she always meets deadlines, and she builds relationships really quickly,” says Heath McWhirter Key Accounts Manager (Agronomy) at Elders

Emma

Emma Ayliffe Master of Ceremonies at The Archibull Prize Awards in 2016

Emma will join 10 of the YFC alumni undertaking facilitation and Changeology workshops with Les Robinson. These workshop will help the YFC learn how to facilitate with confidence and bind people together to explore new options rather than fight to maintain the status quo i.e. how to be an effective changemakers

Emma will also have access to Greg Mills and Gaye Steel  who will be working with the YFC to hone their media and presentation skills for diverse audiences. These workshops will have a strong focus on the importance of ‘being real’ in media interviews. The YFC will identify what drives them, develop presence and harness their power to create impact.

We are very excited to have Elders on board and look forward to adding their logo to our list of partners

You can read more about Emma here

_ 2017 Picture You in Agriculture Supporting Partners

AGnVET and Art4Agriculture partnership supporting #youthinag

e them Art$agriculture is thrilled to announce with have a new supporting partner. AGnVET are supporting the Young Farming Champions program.

Our partnership with AGnVET will see them join the Cotton Research and Development Corporation to support  James Kanaley, their identified future influencer and innovator to access the mentorship of some of Australia’s finest communication, marketing and professional development experts as well as the diverse networks necessary to support them through a unique journey.

James Kanaley

James Kanaley ensuring Australian farmers are front of mind with consumers 

Along the way, AGnVET will create strong links with other inspiring future influencers and innovators who are the face of youth in agriculture and are well placed to pursue a career and other key roles at AGnVET

AGnVET are also supporting The Long Walk for Lungs 

The Long Walk for Lungs eventuated as a result of AGnVET Services, Bill Van Nierop being diagnosed with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) in 2015, quite by chance, and like many with a similar diagnosis, he was unsure what it all meant. It was only a ‘blip’ on an X-ray following a bout of pneumonia that raised some initial concerns and prompted further investigation.

IPF is a rare condition. In Australia, there are approximately 1,500 new IPF cases each year. There is no cure available for IPF yet. It is a progressive disease associated with scarring of the lung tissue that makes it difficult to breath. The five-year survival rate is as low as some of the more devastating cancers – approximately 20%.

The cause of IPF is unknown but certain environmental factors and exposures have been shown to increase the risk of getting IPF. Smoking is the best recognized and most accepted risk factor for IPF. Other environmental and occupation exposures such as exposure to metal dust, wood dust, coal dust, silica, stone dust, biologic dusts coming from hay dust or mold spores or other agricultural products, and occupations related to farming/livestock have also been shown to increase the risk for IPF.

With his diagnosis, Bill has become determined to work with Lung Foundation Australia to raise awareness of this devastating disease as well as symptoms of lung disease so that people can be diagnosed and treated earlier. Lung Foundation Australia is the only national charity dedicated to supporting anyone with a lung disease. Find out more

By becoming an advocate for Lung Foundation Australia, and speaking publicly about his personal situation, Bill hopes to create awareness in rural areas of the prevalence of chronic lung disease and to encourage those with symptoms to take them seriously.

Another motivation of Bill’s is to increase the amount of funding for research to improve outcomes for those affected by lung disease.

Bill is walking from Narromine to Forbes via Griffith and Leeton – no mean feat and we are cheering for him all the way

Long Walk for Lungs

Help us spread the word about the environmental factors and exposures have been shown to increase the risk of getting IPF.

Help us spread the word about this great initiative to raise awareness of IPF and funding for the Lung Foundation of Australia. You can donate here

We look forward to adding the AGnVET logo to our list of supporting partners

_ 2017 Picture You in Agriculture Supporting Partners

 

 

Joe Banks wins the Picture You in Agriculture Scholarship

Joe Banks.JPG Picture You in Agriculture is thrilled to announce that Joe Banks  has been awarded a one year scholarship to our flagship program the Young Farming Champions

Gifted by an anonymous donor JOE BANKS from Dirranbandi has been chosen from a stellar list of applicants to participate in a series of Sydney based workshops, under the mentorship of some of Australia’s finest communication, marketing and professional development experts.

The program’s focus is developing confident, independent, reflective thinkers who can share their story and their personal experiences, while voicing their own opinions about agricultural issues in their industry and more broadly.

The program equips and prepares the participants for that often very daunting experience: of standing up to be counted, even in difficult circumstances. The YFC leadership development model is providing the rock-solid foundation and pivotal stepping stones as part of a journey to lead agriculture’s next generation.

Through these workshops and the program’s lifetime mentorship opportunities, the YFC are also equipped with unique insights into all aspects of the agricultural supply chain as well as consumer attitudes and trends.

Read about our Alumni here 

A bit about Joe

Joe Banks from Dirranbandi in Queensland remembers his early years dominated by drought as he and his family moved their sheep along stock routes in a bid for survival. In fact the vagaries of weather and a changing climate were to be catalysts for his career in agriculture.

“As with a lot of eastern Australia we were hit with some pretty severe droughts in the early 2000s. We stopped dryland cropping and planted saltbush into the old cropping land to act as a fodder buffer for dry times so that we could continue to carry most of our sheep,” Joe says. “It is innovative practices such as this, and cell grazing, that drove me to seek out further knowledge, education and experiences in agriculture.”

Joe has since expanded his agricultural knowledge, education and experience: working on remote northern Australian cattle stations and live cattle export ships, and studying a Bachelor of Agribusiness at Marcus Oldham College; all experiences that have contributed to his current role as Commercial Analyst for NAPCO.

Read Joe’s blog here

_ 2017 Picture You in Agriculture Supporting Partners