Galvanising hidden strengths: Building community knowledge and support networks
19 November 2020 19:00 - 20:00
Farming Together’s Learning Together Webinar Series.
How to build and strengthen networks. Speakers stories followed by Q&A.
Diana Fear, Central West Farming Systems Inc.
Diana Fear is CEO of Central West Farming Systems (CWFS) which is an independent, not-for-profit, farmer driven organisation based at Condobolin, NSW. CWFS operates in an area covering 14 million hectares in the lower rainfall, mixed farming regions of Central West NSW (350-500mm rainfall). Formed in 1998, the group has over 300 members made up primarily of farmers but also private and public sector advisers, researchers and stakeholders.
Diana is a Board Member of Regional Development Australia Central West (RDA CW) and is passionate about increasing the economic, environmental and social opportunities in rural and regional Australia.
On top of this, Diana has been chosen as one of 12 outstanding women with skills and a vision for agriculture that have been selected for the National Farmers’ Federation’s 2020 Diversity in Agriculture Leadership Program.
Ken Drummond, Stirling’s To Coast
Ken Drummond was on the original steering committee to form Stirlings to Coast farmers in 2009. Since then, membership has grown to over 200 members, representing 83 farming businesses, and the group continues to enjoy strong support from an increasing number of sponsors and corporate members. In 2018, SCF initiated it’s Student Connect Future Farmers project, with 19 new student members from the WA College of Agriculture – Denmark. The project expanded in 2019 to other local schools with an Agriculture focus, Mt Barker Community College and Great Southern Grammar, and continues in to 2020 with over 60 students now involved in lectures, demonstrations and work experience.
SCF works with a number of research partners to conduct paddock scale trials each year, as well as coordinating canola disease surveys and herbicide resistance testing. In recent years there has been an increased focus on trials and projects looking at the value chain and post-farm gate value-adding.
Annabelle Bushell, GGA-WA
Annabelle, from the Grower’s Group Alliance in Western Australia, has a passion for rural and regional communities. Growing up on the family farm in the Avon Valley, Annabelle has a Bachelor of Science with Honours and has worked with pastoralists and land managers, researchers, growers and natural resource management professionals and is a key collaborator across science, community and industry to develop and drive new initiatives.
After completing a Masters studying local food systems across Europe, she returned home and relocated to Queensland where she worked with the horticulture supply chain.
Having returned home to WA and bringing her community and stakeholder engagement, commercial acumen and industry collaboration skills, she is keen to support and sustain the networks that build the intellectual and social capital of our regional communities.