Appetite for knowledge at summit

Ann RawlingsCountryman
Rachael Plowman, of Kojonup, Naomi Obst, of Mingenew, and Janet Evans, of Boyup Brook.
Camera IconRachael Plowman, of Kojonup, Naomi Obst, of Mingenew, and Janet Evans, of Boyup Brook. Credit: Cally Dupe

A healthy appetite for knowledge brought more than 200 farmers, agribusiness owners and industry insiders together for the Inspire Summit in Fremantle last week.

Hosted by Partners in Grain WA, the two-day event offered industry-specific business skills training and was an opportunity for attendees to network with their peers.

While PinG WA’s efforts are targeted at women, chairwoman Bronwyn Fox said the not-for-profit organisation was proud to support all farmers across the State.

“Although all our current board members are women, PinG WA is not a women’s organisation — we cater for all members of a farm business,” she said.

“In fact, 30 per cent of PinG participants are male and with the introduction of three new workshops over the past year, this ratio has been increasing.”

While most attendees were within the broadacre sector, their farming enterprises were varied and included livestock or horticulture. However, managing a farming operation extended far beyond skills on the ground.

“Many of us aren’t ‘just’ farmers. Often we are the financial manager, media adviser, HR manager, nurse, mediator, rouseabout, childcare supervisor, counsellor ... as well as juggling off-farm careers and community commitment,” Ms Fox said.

“PinG WA is all about continuous improvement and alignment with experts, but also peer-to-peer learning and responding to grassroots demand. Our facilitated workshops are where we learn from each other, from the mistakes of our peers as well as our wins.”

From sharing knowledge on health and wellness to technology and business strategies, Ms Fox said PinG WA had a busy year ahead.

“We have demand from almost 50 farmer groups and regional organisations for workshops this year,” she said.

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