Rural Women's Network projects and activities
A large portion of RWN time is spent on specific projects and activities. Many of these projects are developed and coordinated in partnerships with other agencies, organisation and community groups.
Hidden Treasures acknowledges the important volunteer roles women play within NSW rural communities. It provides a platform to pay tribute to rural women volunteers who donate their time and energy to help others.
RIRDC Rural Women's Award
The RIRDC Rural Women’s Award encourages women's contribution to primary industries and rural Australia by providing skills and resources to build leadership and decision making capacity. Applications open annually on 1 August and close on World Rural Women's Day, 15 October.
Rural Women Connect
RWN established the RWConnect initiative in February 2013 to create a platform where women across our regions can have a voice, share ideas and improve the government’s understanding of their needs and how best to work together to address these while providing direct feedback that will continue to improve RWN services. RWConnect membership is drawn from a broad geographic/network and skills/expertise base. There are currently 24 members from across NSW representing more than 150 networks.
Shaping Our Futures Together (SOFT)
Shaping Our Futures Together is a two-day leadership course for rural women and was developed in response to rural women asking for relevant, accessible and affordable, community-based leadership training. The workshop, which is designed to engage energise new and existing rural women leaders, builds on women's self-esteem/confidence, goal setting, personal action planning skills, and support networks. It is suitable for a wide range of women including Aboriginal women and those from culturally diverse backgrounds.
Credit Where Credit's Due
Credit Where Credit's Due was developed to recognise the competencies used by farming women as part of their role in the management of their farming enterprise and to help these women gain a Certificate IV in Agriculture (Rural Business Management) which can be used to expand their employment opportunities. This project was a joint initiative of the RWN, the Primary Industries Training Advisory Board Access Division and the Primary Industries Division of NSW TAFE. Seventeen women completed the pilot program with courses now up an running through the Western Institute of TAFE at Coonamble, Dubbo, Forbes and Deniliquin.
Daring to Dream
Daring to Dream celebrates and recognises rural women who are playing key roles as innovators, achievers and/or agents of change within agriculture, industry, business, community, sport, the arts and natural resources, by sharing their stories and providing a opportunity for networking and informal mentoring. DTD features a diversity of women from across NSW and includes high profile women as well as those unsung heroines doing amazing things but who have had little recognition. If you would to be involved in the project or would like to nominate a rural woman to be featured as part of the project contact the RWN.
Living Out Back: People of Western NSW
Living Out Back was a special initiative to celebrate 2002 as the Year of the Outback. A coffee-table style book, it provides a glimpse into the diverse lives of families and individuals from diverse backgrounds who currently make their home in remote parts of NSW showing that the outback is a vibrant place with a wide range of interesting and innovative people involved in a wide range of activities.
Older Women Out There
Older Women Out There was an exciting and innovative project using radio and the internet as a way of promoting wellness to older women living in rural and remote areas. The project saw the development of a series of radio programs on ABC Local Radio and Outback Radio 2WEB and the development of a series of Information Sheets. The radio programs featured talented older women, guest speakers, panels and discussions on a broad range of topics.
One Farm Day
One Farm Day is a series of stories from and about life beyond the farm gate. From shearers to fruit pickers and beekeepers; highs, lows, mud, dust and all, we visit men and women working in all kinds of jobs and tell the story of their farming day. You can read their stories on the One Farm Day blog.
The project was a joint initiative between NSW Department of Primary Industries and Central West Libraries to highlight books, reading and literacy as part of 2012 National Year of Reading and Australian Year of the Farmer.
The Effective Company Director
A joint initiative of the RWN and Innoven Management and Leadership, this high level course provided comprehensive, nationally accredited training designed to provide a clearer insight into the roles and responsibilities of being on a board. The initiative was developed in response to requests from women and men unable to source such high-level training in NSW.
ABC Radio Bush Telegraph's series, exploring the relationships between the in-laws within rural families through personal stories, is available for loan from the RWN. The six programs provide useful insights and strategies for resolving challenges faced by many farming families. Information on the project can be found at: www.abc.net.au/rural/telegraph/inlaws
Third World Congress of Rural Women, Madrid Spain, October 2002
The III World Congress provided a unique opportunity for women from rural communities across the globe to gather and share knowledge on key agricultural and community issues. Support was provided by RWN to enable rural women from NSW to participate in the event with the facilitation of a pre-Congress workshop to ensure rural women from NSW had the necessary skills and confidence to actively participate. The Congress attracted over 1500 women from 80 different countries, including 160 women from Australia.
In the week 28 July – 1 August 2008, RWN ran a pilot project called Virtually farming. The purpose of the project was to explore the use of technology for networking and educational purposes and address some of the time and cost barriers associated with bringing together people located at great distances from each other.
The project provided ‘on-line work experience’ linking Year 10 agricultural students with women working in primary industries. During the week-long project the students accessed the women’s on-line diaries and had the opportunity to interact by asking questions and making comments directly to the women about their work.
Year of the Outback Women's Overseas Study Scholarships
The Year of the Outback Scholarships were a special initiative for 2002 Year of the Outback, to support and encourage women living in the Western Division of NSW who may not otherwise have had an opportunity to travel overseas to undertake a short-term study trip aimed at furthering their knowledge and ability to better contribute to their community. Two Scholarships were offered, each to the value of $10,000. The two winners, Annabel Walsh of Wentworth and Tertia Butcher of Hay, both travelled to South Africa in July 2003 to further their knowledge and experience in agricultural industries, including sheep breeding and natural resource management.
You Choose: Dairy families meeting the challenge
You Choose provided information and ideas for dairy families following deregulation. Information was presented in the form of a short video and accompanying booklet. The video explores how dairy farmers are meeting the challenge of deregulation and covers a wide-range of options being taken, for example, whole farm planning, diversification, value-adding or exiting the industry. Fifteen thousand copies of the booklet and 400 videos were distributed to dairy families.