History of the Gippsland Women’s Network

The 1970s & 1980s

The story beings in the 1970s, when Australia left the European Common Market and dairying suffered a large fall in commodity prices. At this time, dairy farmers had difficulty in gaining support, or even recognition of the threat to family farms.

Fuel prices and interest rates soared, as did the cost of labour. In an effort to keep labour costs down, many women increased their on-farm involvement, whilst others found off-farm employment.

Getting food on the table for the family became a real concern. Young people could not see a future for themselves on the land and left for the city. Land values fell. Local communities felt (and were) threatened.

During this crisis, most families managed their troubled lives in silence. Only a few sought opportunities to achieve some solution.

In the 70s and 80’s, Gippsland women lobbied all levels of Australian government for household financial support.

They needed help to:

  • Put food on the table
  • Clothe their children
  • Meet the costs of so-called free” education

They did not simply want to repeat what men were saying but wanted answers to the questions vital to them:

  • Will our children be able to be farmers?
  • Will our rural towns survive?
  • What is the social cost of any scheme?
  • How can we ensure a sustainable future?

There was no positive image and no planned target for the future. When women did speak out they were ridiculed by the representatives from the farming organisations.

Women Seek Better Marketing…

Gippsland women also recognised that it was poor marketing of their products, which
contributed to low commodity prices. In 1978, women in the Sale area took up a petition to present to Murray Goulburn’s Co-operative Annual Meeting. The petition addressed the marketing of three farm dairy products ­ butter, milk and cheese.

Women wanted:

  • Spreadable butter introduced on supermarket shelves
  • A decrease in the size of flavoured milk cartons for school lunches; and
  • Smaller packs of cheese and more variety.

The petition, which became a resolution, fell on deaf ears, yet, look in our supermarkets today and see how many of these items you can find. In the early 80s, Pat McPhee, a Gippsland dairy farmer from Warragul, began actively promoting cheese and cream. Pat saw that there were significant opportunities in the marketplace not being explored. It is through Pat’s efforts in the ‘80s that Safeway use “real” cream in their cakes today. Pat led the way for other women to become involved in promotion of their farm dairy products.

In the early 1980s also saw one of the worst droughts on record in Australia. The drought affected everybody, not just the dairy industry. But it did trigger some significant changes ­ especially for farm women.

In Gippsland, the Women’s Drought Support Network and the Women in Dairying Group were established. Women from every community background, not just from farming, supported these groups.

Until this time of crisis, there had been very little social activity amongst communities, and certainly no support network lobbying for women.

An absence of any networks meant that information was not shared around. Women discovered strength through building networks. Together, they found a voice to speak up about many shared regional and national concerns.

Women, as always, cared about how social and welfare issues had begun to affect their families. In times of hardship, bureaucratic and politicians’ attention had, as always, concentrated on the economics of the situation.

The social impact on the family unit had strained to ­ and often beyond ­ the point of collapse. The change of state government in Victoria in the early eighties saw many farmers Long time conservative party voters ­ disassociating themselves from the government of the day.

It was farm women who recognised that in order to make progress, they needed to break down these and other artificial barriers to change.

Few male members of producers’ boards were prepared to take social issues seriously. Lobbying by women continued on a state and federal level throughout the eighties. They did not give up.

During one of the many deputations, a senior minister of our national government offered women his “full support”, but declined to make a formal recommendation since he did not want to risk upsetting the male dominated National Farmers’ Federation!

Disheartened but not beaten, women persevered.

Some of the hard work finally paid off in 1986 contributing to the decision of the Victorian Government to establish the Rural Women’s Network

Then, in the late eighties, Women on Farms skills courses began in one of our regional centres.

From this recognition as well as the natural abilities of farm women, grew the annual state Women on Farms Gatherings. These gatherings are still held today around the state.

The 1990s

Severe Floods Hit …

In 1991, severe floods devastated parts of Gippsland. Women who, until this time, often did not even know their neighbours’ first names, were encouraged to develop their own strong community support network, and Wellington Farmlink was formed.
Although progress was being made, it was progress at a snail’s pace compared to what had been achieved in other countries. We recognised that in order to truly succeed, women needed to strike out on new paths, rather than travel the worn paths of accepted success.

In 1991, Mary Salce attended the National Farm Women’s Conference in Canada, and from this trip came the idea for an International Conference on Women in Agriculture, and the establishment of a statewide women in agriculture organisation, which later became Australian Women in Agriculture

The 1st International Conference for Women in Agriculture

The Steering Committee for 1st International Conference for Women in Agriculture met in Gippsland

It took 18 months of submission writing and lobbying by women to gain minimal support for the 1st International Conference for Women in Agriculture

The Invisible Farmer, a report on Australian Farm Women was used to assist with funding applications

Gippsland Women Lobbied Government for support for the 1 st International Conference for Women in Agriculture and to raise awareness of women’s role in agriculture

The 1st International Conference on Women in Agriculture… It took more than eighteen months of submission writing and lobbying by women and women’s groups to get even token support from federal and state governments and industry: “What did these women think they were doing!” The 1st International Conference on Women in Agriculture was held at the University of Melbourne from the 13
July in 1994 and was attended by 860 women from 33 countries.

At the conference women had many things to say and a different perspective to add. They wanted more recognition, more resources and more representation.

Women attending the conference found they gained confidence and skills that would help them to ensure the conference had lasting benefits. After the conference, media started to recognise women’s contributions and seek their opinions.

Evaluations from the first conference revealed most women wanted to be more active in decision making within their communities and in agriculture generally but lacked the confidence and self esteem to do so.

From the first conference has grown a whole range of projects in Gippsland aimed at recognising and developing women’s skills and encouraging their industry participation.

Following on from the conference we were asked to join women from around the world to attend an Agriculture conference in Beijing titled Women in Agriculture and Their Participation in Development of Agricultural Technologies”

International Networks are developed

We formed networks and in April 1995 we invited Chinese rural development officer Guo Riuxiang’s (pron: rejung) to come to Gippsland and meet with our networks as well as others in Australia. This relationship is ongoing and more visits will be planned.

In 1995 we were given the opportunity to present at the, Outlook Conference, Canberra ,again we raised the awareness of rural women and agriculture issues. We became more media Savvy and titled the presentation ….” Beware the Farmer….she is out to change agriculture”

Local Networks are developed through Seminars & Projects

We also wanted to raise the self esteem and the confidence of Gippsland women and wanted to make changes in our own back yard.

The successful Achieving your Goals Seminar for Women was held in Bairnsdale on the 23rd February in 1996 and was attended by more than 200 women.

From this seminar, the East Gippsland Business Women’s Group was established.

The participants at this seminar gave us our first data base and the beginning of the network

Uniting Our Rural Communities

This was followed by the Uniting our Rural Communities Cultural and Community Leadership Project in 1997. Sponsored by the Foundation for Australian Agricultural Women and the Australia Council for the Arts, it became known as the “project with a thousand outcomes”, and involved over 200 women and their families throughout East Gippsland.

The project aimed to help women gain confidence and skills through art, although participants weren’t required to be artistic, just willing to learn new skills including business, leadership and communication skills.

The arts focus of the project enabled women to work together in a non threatening way to produce something that would have a lasting benefit to the community.

Projects were held in Orbost, Omeo, Bairnsdale and Maffra.

Maffra women made a wooden outdoor setting for community use. The table was designed in the shape of a water wheel to reflect the importance of water conservation and irrigation in their area. The timber was branded with images depicting the women’s lives. The project gave women a sense of achievement and the knowledge that collectively, women can tackle anything.

The Orbost project group designed and built a mosaic pathway depicting the history of the Snowy River along with carvings made from burls of wood. The project helped to unite a divided community.

Snakes and Ladders was the title of the play dealing with local issues written and performed by the Bairnsdale group. The women were involved in all aspects from performing, set creation and promotion. The women of the group developed a great sense of confidence that not only benefited them in the project itself, but also in their lives beyond the stage.

The Omeo project group developed a documentary video, now used to promote tourism in the area. It tells stories from the past and the present and looks to the future. It highlights isolation, rural decline and the value of young people.

It is recognised as one of the most successful community development projects.

Further Outcomes Include:

  • More Gippsland women are attending field days and agricultural and educational Workshops
  • One women became a printmaker, a dream she thought she’d never achieve
  • Another started a community art program many started tertiary education
  • Many found new jobs

Another got the courage to send two books and three short stories to publishers

The project concept was delivered to an Aboriginal community in WA

  • It lifted the profile of rural women
  • Fifteen women gave radio interviews
  • Many started their own businesses

The women have taken leadership roles in groups such as Landcare, the Fire Brigade, Commodities based groups, farming groups and kindergartens.

  • The women asked for ongoing activities.
  • They formed networks
  • Participants identified further skills that they required and these needs were met.

The women worked and negotiated with their local shires, where planning permits were required. Women worked direct with their service clubs , local businesses and community groups

The process that was developed for the project is being implemented in the current WWMB …. Selling Gippsland’s Finest , project

Fifty stories about the project were printed and this media attention was encouraging to the participants ­ and the communities started to take notice

One of the women who participated in the Uniting our Rural Communities project went on to develop the Moving the Posts Project in which more than 100 women participated.

The women were given either a plain box or a farm fence post and asked to portray aspects of their lives, loves, concerns and spirituality.

The Project was exhibited at the 2nd International Conference for Women in Agriculture, Washington DC 1998 with the UoRC Project

The International Conference Bowl

Another Outcome of Uniting our Rural Communities was the carving and the creation of the Conference Bowl by the Snowy River Women’s group in Orbost, East Gippsland. Many women are keepers of the family history. They pass on knowledge, skills and stories to their children. So it fitting that the ‘family’ of agricultural and rural women have something to pass on when they come together.

The bowl was created for the 2nd Conference with the idea that it would, in turn, be passed to future conferences. The bowl, with women’s hands carved on the outside is a fitting symbol for rural and agriculture women .

At the 3 rd conference held in Madrid, Spain the bowl was passed to the women of Africa for the next conference.

In 1996 we lobbied the United States with the assistance of the Australian Embassy to host the 2nd International Conference, we were delighted when President Clinton announced that this conference would be held in Washington DC 1998.

The 2nd International Conference

The 2nd International Conference was held in July 1998 and was attended by 1200 women from 50 countries. 120 women represented Australia including many women from Gippsland.

The highlight of the conference was the Salute from Australia Luncheon which showcased Australia and it’s produce. Both beef and lamb were served along with Australian wine. This luncheon would not have been possible without the support from the Gippsland Women’s Network.

During this conference the Gippsland Women’s Network and the Monash University Gippsland arranged for a video link up between Gippsland and Gippsland participants attending the Washington Conference. From these partnerships with the university came

Uniting Our Rural Communities Technology & Community Leadership Project. Over two years, this project introduced more than 500 Gippsland families to new communication and information technology services this was funded by Networking the Nation.

Following on from this project an email list was formed for the women of Gippsland, many times this list provided and requested information, stories were told and good times were shared. On one occasion the List gathered information for a Senate enquiry into petrol prices which was held in Gippsland, this was followed by an article published in The Age newspaper.

It is also to the Second International Conference that we owe the privilege of a visit to Gippsland in March 1999 by Dr. Jill Long Thompson, United States Under Secretary for Agriculture and Rural Development, and chair for the Second International Conference on Women in Agriculture.

While in Gippsland Dr. Jill Long ­Thompson met over 400 women.

Local Networking Continues

Following a severe drought and floods in East Gippsland the campaign for “A future for Rural Australia” was formed“ The lone rider was part of that project, bringing several hundred
submissions from over 50 rural towns in Gippsland to the steps of Parliament in Melbourne.

One of the key organisers, Linette Treasure from Bairnsdale, along with the committee supported by the Gippsland Women’s Network organised the Gippsland Saddlebag ride from the NSW border to Vic. Parliament House. Following this successful campaign, others were inspired to get together and make a stand on a range of issues.

Following this successful campaign, other women were inspired to get together and make a stand on a range of issues. From Grass Roots level we now have an independent Member of Parliament. And Linette went on to serve as an East Gippsland Shire Councillor.

Having Your Voice Heard Forum

The forum “Having Your Voice Heard” was held in response to requests from the general public
The Forum provided an insight into lobbying, encouraged leadership and networking and empowered rural people to control their own destiny. It engaged the media and decision makers as partners. Over 200 attended

Outcomes:

  • Networks formed that assisted in initiating and establishing:
  • Avon River Keepers ­ farmers & environmentalists working together to protect the Avon River
  • WRATH ­
  • Wellington Residents Against Toxic Hazards

The forum evaluation told us that:

  • Women were concerned about unemployment & youth leaving the region
  • Women wanted to develop leadership & networking skills
  • Women wanted skills to help them develop a sustainable future for their families & community

“The Box” Project

So The Box Project was launched on the 2nd of November 2000, which aimed to source new ideas for local employment, particularly for and from youth.

Members of the community were invited to submit their ideas by email, mail, phone and via notes placed into The Box. The Box was located in the Gippsland Centre Sale throughout the month of November.

Deb Bye reviewed The Box ideas in a weekly broadcast on ABC Gippsland radio.

Outcomes from The Box:

Gipplanders identified their concerns about employment, youth leaving the country, lack of community leadership, lack of self esteem, lack of marketing Gippsland’s finest including fibre, art and culture.

Many suggestions were made to include youth in the process as well as establishing new businesses.

The Box results encouraged the Gippsland Women’s Network to write submissions to State and Fed government to seek funding for a community development project to incorporate the community ideas and concerns from The Box.

After lots of writing more submissions and lots of lobbying direct to Government ­ the Women who Mean Business… selling Gippsland Finest Project was developed

The 3rd International Conference

About 1,700 people including 160 women from Australia and from 97 other countries of the world were brought together in Madrid for the 3rd conference which was renamed as a World Congress for Rural Women

The Congress was officially opened by the Queen of Spain and once again provided a unique opportunity for women from rural communities across the globe to gather and share knowledge on key agricultural and community issues. The Gippsland Women’s Network were invited tell their story in a presentation.

Post Fires 2003 Free Lunch & Dinner for Women

Following the devastation of the East Gippsland Fires in early 2003 a get together of 140 women in Omeo over lunch was organised by the GWN and supported by Melbourne women.

A dinner was also held for the women from the Tubbut region. We heard many stories, which encouraged us to make contact with Anne Dunn, Chair of the Regional Women’s Advisory Council. Anne made a special visit to Bairnsdale to meet with some for the women.

Women on the Move

An outcome from this meeting was ­ the Women On the Move ­ conference supported in kind administration by the Wellington Shire and the Federal Regional Women’s Advisory Council and many more sponsors.

Another outcome from all the get togethers was the GWN first newsletter,

The conference provided an opportunity for women of Gippsland to come together to discuss issues affecting Gippsland. Three key issues were presented in workshop format:

  • We are Running Out of Water ­ What will we do?
  • Woman & Small Business, What are the opportunities?
  • Rural Communities are Changing, How will we live together?

Conference participants included primary producers, business women, students, those working in education and administration.

The majority wanted to know more about water, Anne Dunn took this message back to the Deputy Prime Minister, John Anderson and one of the outcomes was the Women on Water forum.

“Facts, Fallacies, Future” – this was an opportunity for all Victorians to obtain information about the water debate at International, National, State and Regional levels.

Feedback & Outcomes

  • Tremendous Feedback “best conference I’ve been to”
  • Social Impacts of water issues being discussed for the 1st time
  • 80% gained an improved understanding of the issues addressed
  • Many women indicated a desire to share this knowledge
  • many indicated they planned to write to their local members / parliamentarians
  • Establishment of website for ongoing discussion on issues raised at the conference wow.org.au

Women Who Mean Business Project

Meanwhile – on the 19th of February 2004, the Women who Mean Business…. selling Gippsl and’s Finest project was launched by Minister for Victorian Communities, John Thwaites and funded over 3 years.

This project was a direct outcome from The Box project 8 regional groups across Gippsland, developed their own community project. Prior to commencing the projects each group participated in skills development workshops which included Promotion , Marketing, Event Planning, Business Planning, and how to Manage the Media

As the group’s projects progressed they identified further training required to complete their projects.

The first six months of 2004 involved:

  • Setting up administration for the project ­
  • Project Management Committee established
  • Project Officers and Project Networking Officer were employed
  • Production of Autumn Newsletter ­ 1300 distributed
  • Website established
  • Establishment of 8 regional working groups ­170 participants
  • Received Project Officers Progress Monthly Reports
  • Women who Mean Business expressions of interest and data base ­ Database Gippsland Women’s Network ­ 1200
  • Women who Mean Business Email List established – 160

The groups were asked to develop their own database of contacts to expand the network and Diaries of the project process and stories were created and maintained throughout the projects.

GWN President Mary Salce was invited to Charters Towers in Qld to showcase the history of the Gippsland Women’s Network and the projects including the WwMB as an example and an inspiration for other groups wishing to empower women in their own communities.

The overall project involved

  • Over 920 participants
  • 58 skills training workshops
  • More than 170 positive media articles
  • 160 Govt, Business & Community groups participated
  • Each group donated more than $10,000 in kind support
  • Cash grants from Gippsland Shires totalling $12,700
  • Small Volunteer Grant $2500
  • Much more in inkind
  • support from across the region
  • 330 Members on the WwMB Email List
  • Nearly 900 on the mailing list database
  • 1000 Newsletters being distributed quarterly

The Stratford Project was the Garden for Humanity

  • The Garden is a place for locals and tourists to gather for recreation and enjoyment
  • The group learned new skills including garden design, sculpture & woodcraft and business skills
  • They learned to work with and within committees
  • Developed networks with community groups, landcare organizations, local council & businesses
  • Learnt skills and gained experience in dealing with the media
  • Researched & recorded aspects of local history
  • Developed awareness and understanding of Koori culture and heritage
  • The project provided an opportunity to link with the Rail Trail to Maffra,
  • The Village Sculpture Garden and Stratford Town Walk were also developed

At Orbost they’ve created a Magical garden and community walkway that incorporates native plants, mosaics and sculptures. they:

  • Liaised with Shire, Parks Victoria & Local Businesses for funding
  • Obtained in kind contributions & participation from community
  • Assisted in preparation of the plan with Shire
  • Worked with a Koori art group
  • Research & Negotiation skills developed & improved
  • Learnt how to compromise and gain consensus
  • Increased Confidence & Self Esteem
  • Also involved local schools in the continuing development of the project

Buchan Project – Art & Craft Gallery and the group has incorporated ­ Buchan Gallery Inc

In developing this project the group:

  • Negotiated with Shire
  • Developed their own media strategy
  • Produced Grant Submissions for further funding
  • Set up their own website through www.gippsland.com
  • Connection with Tourist Operators
  • Setting up Opening & running of a gallery

Swifts Creek / Omeo project had three parts – enhancing the Back to Back Wool Challenge, staging a photographic exhibition of the challenge and then taking local artists and their works to the city. The group developed many new skills:

  • Working with existing events such as the International Back to Back
  • Wool Challenge in June 2005 attracting
  • The photographic documentation exhibition of the Back to Back The photographic documentation exhibition of the Back to Back
  • opened at Swifts Creek 12 Sep 05, Bairnsdale 29 Sep 05, opened at Swifts Creek 12 Sep 05, Bairnsdale 29 Sep 05,
  • Marketing and media skills played a major role in the success of each event
  • Developed networks both locally and in Melbourne
  • Overcoming personal fears to exhibit own artwork in the city – “Connections” Melbourne 14 Oct 05 14 Oct 05
  • Realisation that things are more accessible than previously believed – you just have to give it a go

The Meeniyan / Leongatha project is a bit different from the others. One of the outcomes from the workshops held in Meeniyan was the creation of a quilt celebrating the diversity of women in South Gippsland, the ages, stages and paths that bring them together, creating a blanket of support for all.”

Fifteen South Gippsland women were involved in making the quilt. The process involved several learning stages such as creative writing and bookbinding workshops. They learnt how to make paper for the book and later wrote their stories on the paper before it was bound.

They were taught how to transfer photographs of themselves onto the fabric and finally used the squares of fabric to make the quilt. The quilt was then displayed at the Minivan art gallery and has since been displayed in other locations After the quilt was completed, further workshops were conducted in the Leongatha area including Working with the Media, Photography and Business planning & Event Management – these were supported by the South Gippsland Shire Council.

The Latrobe group published a collection of recipes and stories called Tucker ‘N Tales ­ The Past, Present & Visions of tomorrow told as a recipe story book.

More than 200 community groups were invited to have input into the book and the school community provided invaluable support with their participation.

Seventy residents from the region shared their life journeys either writing their stories themselves or telling them to one of a small team of writers from with the project group. Everyone who shared their story was also asked to share a favourite recipe.

Proceeds from the sale of the book are being used for other community projects.

In Warragul the group created an Arts Discovery Trail with painted bollards, mosaic tiles and a large mosaic compass in the Linear Park. The Group became incorporated as the Women’s Compass Network ­ The group offers the opportunity for women of all ages, cultural and economic backgrounds to come together to develop talents in leadership, business and the arts, and deliver projects of value to the Warragul community.

  • A website for Gippsland Artists has been created
  • Baw Baw Shire has undertaken capital works to improve the beauty and safety of the Linear Park Trail as part of the project ­ including installation of lighting
  • Group of about 60 artists were involved in making bollards and the mosaics
  • Submitted a three year plan to the Shire regarding future development of the project

Yarram Spring into Art Festival ­ a five day festival held over Melbourne Cup weekend in 2005 to celebrate the arts in various locations around the district. Over 3000 people attended over the 5 days. An official opening and celebratory dinner were held as part of the event.

  • Marina Prior performed at the Dinner
  • The group Developed a brochure, website and extensive advertising for Festival – 10,000 distributed
  • Developed a strong volunteer base
  • Established database of local artists
  • the old Yarram Court House refurbishment was expedited to house the art exhibition for the festival
  • Developed network with the organising committee of the Annual Tarra Festival
  • The group is preparing for incorporation and intends to make the Festival an ongoing event.

Women Who Mean Business Project Showcased

The Women Who Mean Business – selling Gippsland Finest Project was celebrated in February 2006 With a showcase, marketing & business forum.

Participants from each project group were invited to showcase their project through an interview style presentation.

Workshops were held on “Getting Started with Websites”, “Digital Photoraphy”, “Tools for Business and Life” and “Investing in the Share Market”. A Marketing Forum was held with 4 guest speakers and included topics on Marketing Yourself, Your Products, your Business, and Your Region.

A Market was held at the event and Art Work from Project Participants was on display.

The feedback from the event was overwhelmingly positive with many of those attending saying they wanted more.

To Summarise the Project:

Stage 1 – Getting started, setting up administration, the website, newsletters and each of the working groups.

After each workshop and throughout the project development, continued evaluation and reporting has been conducted and these will be presented in detail in the final report to be submitted to the Community Support Fund.

CONFIDENCE

  • Improved confidence and self knowledge about what one can do and would try
  • Learning from others through newsletters as well as personally
  • Increased confidence of women to get involved
  • Increased confidence in dealing with organisations for community benefit.
  • Raising profile of local women via newsletters and media.
  • Recognising the importance and acknowledging diversity in personal skills, abilities and interests.

SKILLS

  • Development of skills – both personally and as a group
  • Communication, research, business, submissions writing, budget management, event management, negotiation, media , mosaicing, digital photography, strategy planning ­ the list goes on…
  • Development of understanding of mechanisms of government and how to work with them for community benefit.
  • Awareness and greater understanding of Koori culture and heritage
  • Skills developed being utilised for other community projects
  • Skills developed being utilised for business ventures
  • Establishment of websites

NETWORKS

  • Establishment of ongoing partnerships and linkages with range of government and non government organisations
  • Expansion of networks and opportunities for cooperation
  • Strengthen relationships with local Shire and community groups
  • Forming new support networks

COMMUNITY

  • Greater involvement of women in other local projects
  • Women taking on new roles, and opportunities for other projects
  • Increase in women taking on leadership roles in community organisations
  • Promotion of community projects and achievements – across Gippsland and the State
  • Development of friendships

BUSINESS

  • Three of the project committees have incorporated and are working on new projects in the community
  • The money raised from the sale of “Tucker ‘n’ Tales will be directed into other community projects
  • Establishment of new business ventures by women involved in projects
  • Increase in women involved taking up new employment
  • Community members and project workers
  • Both part time and full time work
  • Economic benefits to local communities especially when events held. (over 2000 in Yarram for Spring into Art Festival)
  • Increase in tourism opportunities for project sites and local towns
  • Increase in publicity for tourism opportunities

The groups were asked to contribute what they considered to be 10 Golden Rules for Successful Community Projects……These were collated and summarised:

  1. Effective communication is vital
  2. Community projects mean working together
  3. Accept the Group will take time to develop – use the time wisely
  4. Have a Plan, Write it down, update it when necessary
  5. Keep good written & photographic records
  6. Enjoy the challenges, personalities, setbacks and the achievements
  7. Recognise that everyone in the team has great skills
  8. Look after the people in the team – they are your greatest asset
  9. Share resources, workload, excitement and the disappointments
  10. Keep it in perspective

The Gippsland Women’s Network was formalized and incorporated in 2006 and continues to have an impact on the Gippsland community and beyond.

The Gippsland Women’s Netowrk Incorporates

In 2005 The Gippsland Women’s Network became incorporated with founding members: Mary Salce, Eileen Thurgood, Kate Earle, Deb Bye, Beth Harris, Di Deppeler, Jo Mccubbin, Val Byth, Catherine Noy, June Alexander, Sheena Boughen, Alison Howe

The 4th International Conference

The 4th Intenrational Congress for Women in Agriculture was held in South Africa in May 2007. Representitives from the Gippsland Women’s Network attended and Mary Salce, founder of the conference was invited to speak. More details coming soon!