YOUNG residents from Ballarat and district are invited to participate in an innovative program aimed at retaining young people on farms and in agribusiness in Western Victoria. Defying the Drift is a unique program developed by Marcus Oldham College and Rotary District 9780 which includes around 60 Rotary Clubs in Western Victoria.
The program is available to year 10 and 11 second ary students in Ballarat and district considering a career in agriculture and related industries.
The program is centred on a three day residential course at Marcus Oldham College in Geelong from Monday the 28th of September to Wednesday the 30th of September 2015. Rotary District 9780 Rural Support Committee Chairman Rob Pelletier said the aim of Defying the Drift is to expose participants to a cross section of agricultural enterprises, including leadership development. He said participants visited businesses operating at different stages in the chain of production from “paddock to plate” while also reflecting the range of business sizes and approaches evident in agriculture in the 21st century.
Mr Pelletier said the Defying the Drift program was an ideal way for young men and women in Ballarat and district to gain wider exposure to different facets of Victoria’s agriculture industry.
“It is heartening to note that Defying the Drift appeals equally to girls and boys, belying the traditional image of agriculture as a male dominated industry,” he said.
“The 2014 program included slightly more boys than girls, but overall, the program attracts approximately equal numbers. The more or less equal gender involvement reflects the composition of the post-secondary programs offered at Marcus Oldham College and other tertiary agriculture programs,” Mr Pelletier said. Participants in the 2014 Defying the Drift program came from towns across Western Victoria including Portland, Beaufort, Maryborough, Daylesford, Geelong East, Charlton, Bacchus Marsh, Terang and Wendouree.
More information about Defying the Drift, including a downloadable application form and online enquiry form, can be found at www. ruralsupport.org For further information telephone George Kirsanovs on (03) 53492550 or 0458-492-555. Photo : Participants in the 2014 Defying the Drift program. (Photo supplied)