The first ever LEADAg training course has wrapped up with participants, organisers and community leaders hailing the event a success.
Ten students were chosen from almost 70 applicants to participate in the initiative designed to deliver hands-on, practical training to prepare them for the workforce.
LEADAg was developed by CHRRUP, a community-owned, central Queensland based profit-for-purpose organisation dedicated to thriving, connected rural communities.
CHRRUP CEO Simone Parker said she was proud of the event her organisation was able to offer.
“Our staff, mentors and students have all made this event a success and I can confidently say the students left with new skills that will make them really employable in the ag industries,” she said.
“Not only that, I think many of them have a renewed sense of passion for the industry because we have been able to showcase lots of really exciting jobs that they could pursue.”
The LEADAg program was packed with sessions run by CHRRUP staff, local trainers and industry mentors on a range of topics, including farm safely, first aid, fencing, pasture management, biosecurity and cropping production as well as livestock handling and husbandry.
Students were also taken on a tour of a commercial feedlot and the Fairbairn Dam. Central Highlands Regional Council Mayor Kerry Hayes said the training was well placed in Emerald.
“We’re a hub for so many industries and we have a wealth of local knowledge so it was a natural fit and I’m not surprised to see LEADAg has flourished here,” he said.
“It’s great to see agricultural training is back happening here in CQ and we hope to keep it that way.”
Seventeen-year-old LEADAg participant Amber Mohammed travelled from far north Queensland to attend the training and hopes to one day have a career in the beef industry.
Amber says her favourite part of LEADAg was learning fencing from local industry mentors.
“I like getting my hands dirty and actually doing the work I’m trying to learn about so it was awesome to be out in the paddock,” she said.
“I found it really good to have the mentors right there showing us how to do it but also letting us have a go on the tools.”
While only 10 students could complete this round of LEADAg training, Simone Parker says the fact almost 70 applied from across New South Wales and Queensland means there is certainly interest in future events.
“CHRRUP really wants to fill that gap and offer more training so we are getting back to the drawing board to figure out how we can continue to offer these opportunities to students,” she said.
“Anyone interested in attending the next LEADAg event should follow CHRRUP’s social media channels and keep an ear out because there is more to come!”
The LEADAg pilot course was funded by the Queensland Agricultural Workforce Network an initiative of the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries.
The event has been designed and facilitated by CHRRUP, an Emerald based organisation that engages with a broad range of sectors, identifies gaps, and takes an active role in furthering rural communities through partnerships and delivering a mix of products, services, and programs.