27 February 2015
The NFYFC Council has agreed to propose a 20% increase to the gross national levy that members pay to be part of the Federation.
The motion will be taken to the Annual General Meeting in Torquay on Sunday 26 April, where all members will be invited to vote on the proposed increase to the membership fee.
The percentage increase represents £2.66 per member based on the Federation’s current membership numbers and will bring in an additional income of £60,000 to help plug the funding gap.
NFYFC is facing a loss in funding due to the changes to its commercial trading arm, which are as a result of new Government legislation around the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Scheme (SAWS).
The decision to propose the increase was voted through unanimously at the February Council meeting after members reviewed NFYFC’s finances.
The national Federation already has plans in place to introduce new income streams and are assessing new ways of working. Steering Groups have also agreed to operate with reduced budgets and the Federation will continue to build on the massive savings that were made in 2014.
New Chair of Council Hannah Talbot urged members to get behind the levy increase to support the ongoing work of the Federation.
“The proposed increase in the national levy is a necessity if we are to ensure the future effective running of NFYFC. We want this organisation not just to survive but to thrive in the future and it is paramount that all our clubs and counties support us in making this happen,” said Hannah.
“The additional income still does not cover the gap in funding but we are also looking at additional income streams and new ways of working that will build on the savings we made in 2014. Please support our Federation and back the levy increase.”
27 February 2015
Putting Young Farmers’ Clubs firmly at the heart of their local communities is one of the 2015 priorities of NFYFC’s new top team in a bid to fortify the 80-year old organisation.
Members elected a new leadership team at the Council meeting in February and they have promised to strengthen the organisation in what is set to be a challenging year.
Hannah Talbot from Cutnall Green YFC in Worcestershire was voted in as the new Chair of Council by members following two years in the Vice Chair’s position. Chris Manley from Culm Valley YFC in Devon was re-elected as Vice Chair for a second year while Jessica Townson from Bolton by Bowland YFC in Lancashire stepped into the role for the first time.
The trio will face tough financial challenges this year as the organisation develops new income streams and ways of working.
During her year as Chair, Hannah wants to reinvigorate the organisation to make it more relevant to rural young people today and drive up the membership numbers. She also wants to celebrate what is great about YFCs and the essential role they play in their local communities.
Hannah said: “I’m honoured to be leading an organisation that has so many members and offers such diverse opportunities. Young Farmers’ Clubs do so much work to support their local communities – not only by raising money for charities but also by being a vital social link for rural young people.
“The membership will have some big decisions to make this year to strengthen the organisation but everyone on the Council team is so passionate and enthusiastic that I know we will be able to create a positive future for more Young Farmers.”
One of the ways Hannah hopes to unite clubs across England and Wales is by involving them in the Birmingham Half Marathon in October. All members taking part are invited to raise money for their local causes and it is hoped the fundraisers – nicknamed Hannah’s Dashers – will demonstrate how much money YFCs can raise for local charities.
More than 100 members gathered in Coventry to pass motions that affect the running of the organisation and to elect the new Council. Stepping down from her post as Chair, which she took on in November 2013, Claire Worden said her highlights were launching the Rural+ campaign and working with a fantastic group of people.
“Working together with a number of organisations – especially The Farming Community Network (FCN) and YoungMinds – Rural+ has helped to raise awareness about the mental health issues that can affect rural young people. Thank you to every single Council member, every member that I have spoken to this year and every County I have visited. It has been an exceptional year, and I couldn’t have done it without you.”
Chris Manley, who was re-elected as Vice Chair, has already put his hat into the ring to be considered for the 2016 Chairmanship. He said:
“I would be honoured to stand as Chair in 2016. I think the two-year lead in is essential as you get to learn from a lot of experienced people. I want to support Hannah this year and then hopefully I can run for Chairman in 2016 to continue to make NFYFC the number one rural youth organisation.”
As well as the elections, the Council also approved proposals, including:
- The 2015 line up for the Annual Convention
- A motion for an increase in the national levy to be taken to the Annual General Meeting
- The YFC Ski trip will be hosted in Les Arcs in 2016 from 9-16 January
- Rules for 2015/16 competitions.
Five steering groups represent the views of the members and include: Competitions; Events and Marketing; Personal Development; the Youth Forum and Agriculture and Rural Issues.
The team will be charged with leading on the overall policy for the Federation, continuing the development and leadership of YFCs to meet the needs of its members and developing the status and image of YFC to the outside world.
Other elections included:
Chair: Mark Curr (Cumbria)
Vice Chair: Matt Tomkins (Worcestershire)
Events and Marketing
Chair: Katie Davies (Pembrokeshire)
Vice Chair: Caroline Baker (County Durham)
Chair: Toby France (Warwickshire)
Vice Chair: Mark Hurst (Cumbria)
Agriculture and Rural Issues
Chair: Lynsey Martin (Kent)
Vice Chair: Sam Dilcock (Lancashire)
Chair: Danielle McNulty (Gloucestershire)
Vice Chair: Amy Swinbank (Cumbria)
19 February 2015
Mutual, the UK’s leading rural insurer, is once again offering the Centenary Award for
postgraduate students in agriculture.
The award gives annual bursaries to pay up to 75% of
course fees for selected post graduate students in agriculture (Masters or
Centenary Award is a long-term scheme, run by the NFU Mutual Charitable Trust,
and was launched in 2010 to celebrate the 100th birthday
of NFU Mutual. To date 23 students have
received bursaries for their studies.
The award is open to
students who have gained, or are expected to gain, a 2:1 or above in
agriculture or a closely related degree, and have been accepted or
provisionally accepted on a Masters or PhD course in agriculture in the UK
starting in Autumn 2015.
To select the students the
judging panel will be looking for applicants who are not only excellent
academic performers, but are also committed to the future of agriculture.
NFU Mutual Charitable Trust has specifically identified three topic areas of
interest for eligible students:
agriculture and climate change
application of science and innovative technology to the agricultural
postgraduate students who think they may be eligible to apply for the award in
2015 should contact firstname.lastname@example.org
to request further details and an application form.
closing date for applications relating to courses starting Autumn 2015 is 30th
17 February 2015
NFYFC has once again teamed up with Country Living Magazine to offer Young Farmers a chance to win tickets to their Spring Fair (18th - 22nd March).
You could be the lucky winner of one of FIVE pairs of tickets to the show, which promises to give lots of inspirational ideas for the home and garden.
Taking place at the Business Design Centre, Islington, The Country Living Spring Fair is fresh and bright and full of lovely things and creative ideas that bring a touch of the countryside into the home to herald that summer is on its way. It has all the ingredients for a special day out, offering inspiration for the house and the garden with hundreds of unusual items – furniture, furnishings and fashion - hand-picked from companies that you won't find on the high street. There are expert demonstrations in the Spring Lifestyle Theatre, and hands on workshops to encourage your own creativity.
features at the 2015 Fair will see a Producers Village at the front of the Fair. Visitors can also stop by to meet
traditional farmers, kitchen table bakers, artisan chocolatiers and organic
wine makers. Meanwhile, located on the
Gallery level is the Newcomers Market, acting as a launchpad for talented
artisans that celebrates a wonderful variety of makers, crafters, designers and
producers from across the UK. Click here for more information about the Spring Fair.
To be in with a chance of winning one of five pairs of tickets, all you need to do is answer the following question:
Q. What is the fancy dress theme for this year's NFYFC Annual Convention in Torquay?
Just send your answer to email@example.com, with your name, the name of your club, address and telephone number, by 12:00pm on Monday 9th March 2015 to be in with a chance of winning!
The five winners will be chosen at random and contacted after the competition has finished. The winning tickets will allow access for one day at the Spring Fair. You must be a member of the NFYFC and have an up-to-date membership card to take part.
If you are a Young Farmer but not lucky enough to be a winner of this competition, you can still apply to get discounted tickets for the fair, simply visit www.nfyfc.org.uk/deal-countrylivingspring (You will need your account login details to access this offer).