This week, I would like to introduce two wonderful people, Jess and Tara, and have them share their experiences on their journey in the ag shows movement and their wider communities.
From competing at my first ag show aboard my pony Rattle at two years of age to The Land Sydney Royal AgShows NSW Young Woman runner up for 2023 - what an experience I have had through the ag shows movement!
Hello, my name is Jessica Towns and I hail from the Moree Plains.
Although I did not grow up on a farm but rather on a small property with performance horses and the odd hay crop, I found a love for agriculture at a young age. I now work for a local livestock finance company, Ottley Capital.
My week entails working with livestock agents throughout Australia and on weekends, I am travelling NSW to support and showcase the importance of agricultural shows while celebrating women in agriculture.
Since becoming part of the 2023 Young Woman cohort, I had the honour of opening the 138th Moree Show and addressing the community at the 88th Wee Waa Show.
I have made memories for life, from the show jumping ring in Warialda, sheep yards in Dubbo, as a Young Woman judge in Narrabri and the most entertaining, being dressed as a dinosaur in Walgett for a mustering display while the community celebrated the rain.
Agricultural shows not only display the skills and produce of a region but also the resilience and versatility of a community.
In June, I accompanied 2022 NSW Premiers Woman of the Year, Anna Barwick, as a keynote speaker at the Deepwater Healthwise Women's Winter Warmer Gala.
This wonderful initiative celebrates rural women and provides those living in isolated regions the chance to connect with the community.
I was proud to be a part of the committee for the Young Aggies Moree Gold Rush Ball in September.
Young Aggies Moree is focused on attracting and retaining the next generation of agricultural professionals to the Moree Plains.
The charity ball attracted 500 eager supporters to raise $70,297! The money raised fund the Young Aggies Moree Rural Scholarship, bringing the next generation of young professionals to the region while also supporting six rural community groups.
My adventures so far in the Young Woman program have been phenomenal and I cannot wait to see what is around the next corner in my travels across the countryside!
Hello, Tara Coles here from Lismore.
The Young Woman program has been life-changing for me. I have been able to network and create connections with so many people across NSW.
This has enabled me to attend many shows already and further invigorate my passion for our rural communities and local ag shows while being an ambassador and representative for young rural women.
Through winning the inaugural Announcer's Academy scholarship and having the wealth of knowledge from Lyndsey Douglas as my mentor, I am developing my announcing skills.
Prior to entering the Young Woman program, I would have never thought to enter the announcing world and from this, I have fallen in love with the role an announcer plays at our shows.
I have now created a business from this opportunity and find myself supporting youth in an industry where they are so valued by our show societies and I hope to encourage more people to get involved.
Now we get the privilege to pass on our current roles to a new class of Young Woman entrants in 2024 and from seeing the quality of women coming through our shows, we know our future is in good hands.
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