National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs

Fun, Learning, and Achievement

29 June 2015

The NFYFC’s Youth Forum made its presence felt at the second Council weekend of 2015 in Coventry, as the Federation looks to develop opportunities available to the Federation’s youngest members.

The Youth Forum met with Events & Marketing Steering Group Chairman, Katie Davies (pictured right), to make initial plans for a residential activities weekend for under-18 members to run alongside the Annual Convention. The Youth Forum also announced that a pilot YFC Ski trip for 14-17 year old members will be taking place in Austria in February 2016.

Danielle McNulty, Youth Forum chairman, said: “It was a fantastic weekend for the Youth Forum. Not only was it great to forge partnerships with other Steering Groups, but it was also really encouraging to see so much enthusiasm from council at the plans that are in store for the younger members of the Federation.

With support from the NFYFC AGRI Steering Group, the Forum is also leading the Federation’s farm safety campaign. Members of the Youth Forum will be working alongside the Farm Safety Foundation to raise awareness of farm safety and encourage YFC members to think about their attitudes to ensure they stay safe on the farm.

Danielle said: “We are really grateful to Stephanie Berkeley from the Farm Safety Foundation for coming along to talk about our roles as ambassadors for Farm Safety. It gave us great confidence in how we can spread the word about farm safety and how we encourage our fellow Young Farmers to change their attitudes when it comes to staying safe.”

The Youth Forum are also involved with the British Youth Council and will be presenting motions at the Council’s next ACM, including promoting agriculture as a career and encouraging more ‘field-to-fork’ education.

COUNCIL NEWS

In other developments from the weekend:

  • At a special general meeting, council agreed the maximum amount of annual honoraria that can be received by certain NFYFC officers. The chair of council will receive £3,000 a year, with council vice-chairs and the board of management chair receiving £1,000 each and the NFYFC Treasurer receiving £750 a year.

AGRI

  • The AGRI Steering Group are working with sponsors, Kuhn Farm Machinery, to put together a dream machine competition.  Details will be finalised for October Council meeting.
  • Plans for next year's AGRI Forum are already being discussed and plans will be confirmed at the next Council meeting in October.
  • The Steering Group are encouraging members to make a video about their job in agriculture ahead of the next Council meeting in October.

COMPETITIONS

  • All competitions will now be subject to an administrative charge for withdrawal of teams/individuals between two weeks and 48 hours leading up to the event.
  • The theme for the 2016/17 competitions programme is 'Around the World'.
  • The sports competitions for 2016/2017, are 16+ male football, 16+ female netball, 10-16 mixed rounders.
  • Matt Tomkins has resigned as Vice Chairman of the Steering Group and Oonagh O’Neill has been elected as his replacement.
  • A “How to Guide” will be produced to help members prepare for the speaking competitions. 
  • Videoing of speaking competitions will take place next weekend and will be used as a video resource.
  • All teams will be photographed at the NFYFC Tug of War finals this year as per other organisations.
  • Fence Erecting and Efficiency With Safety competitions will move to Competitions Weekend in 2016.
  • An overall trophy from Whitley Chapel YFC, Northumberland, will be presented on an annual basis for the performing arts competition.
  • 2016/2017: The three craft competitions have been removed and the Cube display has been reinstated.

EVENTS & MARKETING

  • The Annual Convention 2016 fancy dress themes for members to choose are: Back to the Future, Sports Day & Superheroes. A poll is now available on the NFYFC homepage.
  • The Steering Group are looking into bands and DJ’s to play at the Annual Convention 2016.
  • The Annual Convention ticket prices have been fixed for 2016.
  • Ski trip 2016 tickets are on sale. The Steering Group continue to develop the programme.
  • All YFC ski reps are in place. There are still two spaces available in Wales and one in Eastern area.
  • The YFC Ski fancy dress themes for members to choose are: Arctic Animals, Christmas jumpers & Crazy shirts.
  • The Steering Group are working with Personal Development Steering Group in creating a national recruitment and retention campaign.

PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT

  • The Steering Group will work with the Northern Reps to see if they would like to participate in the Canal and Rivers Trust Coast to Coast project to make a 120 mile canoe route.
  • There is funding available from Ambition for up to £2,000 for social action, leadership, media and creative art projects.
  • Council members were asked to encourage county federations to organise an Exploring Enterprise and Cash Management course, which NatWest will deliver free of charge.
  • New sections have been written for The Source.  This includes the Top Tips for a Club Exchange.  The group would like to ask for anyone who has recently been on an exchange to get in contact with us to share their expertise.
  • Three new Curve modules have been written on Club Programming , Health & Safety and Social Media.
  • A refundable deposit of £30 will be required for those going on the YFC Travel trips and returned to those who complete their multi-media presentation.  The projects will then be entered into the YFA competition.
  • The steering group approved the trips of 2016 and chose Jamaica for next year's volunteering trip.
  • The selection process for some YFC Travel Trips will be done via Skype as a pilot.

The NFYFC is run by Young Farmers, FOR Young Farmers. If you want to help shape the future of Young Farmers, or if you have an idea that you would like to put to one of our Steering Groups, click here to have your voice heard!


26 June 2015

The 2015 YFC Travel programme is well underway, with members embarking on trips of a lifetime to destinations all over the world. Members involved in the exchange programme make friends for life – whether they have travelled to another country or acted as a host for someone.

Staffordshire member Katie Pollock knows all about it after spending eight weeks in Sydney and Australia last year. She became great friends with Tasmania Rural Youth President Prue Dennis and was delighted to catch up with her again when Prue came to the UK recently – including a trip to the Annual Convention.

She said: “I got chatting to Prue in Tasmania and noticed that she was wearing a Joules top – and from there we realised that we both love horses. It takes one thing in common to make a friendship and for us it was horses.”

Among the activities Katie enjoyed in Australia was a riding lesson with Olympic rider Stewart Tinney, while Prue is taking the opportunity to go to the Badminton Horse Trials while she is over here.

“I’d recommend it to others 100%,” said Katie. “If you go with YFC Travel you save a ton of money and you see a lot more because you are staying with people who can show you so much.

“And it opens doors when you get back too – since going on this exchange, I’ve been asked to steward at YFC competitions and I’ve been in Farmers Guardian,
Farmers Weekly, a woman’s magazine in Scotland, and Ten26! It makes you feel quite special and that you can help other people. And all for a lot less money than if you went travelling yourself.”

Katie got the full travel experience because, as well as going on a trip herself, she also acted as host for Prue for a week during her visit to the UK.

Prue said: “Katie is really easy to get along with and as soon as I told her I was coming overseas and that I had a free week she screamed, ‘I’ll take you, I’ll take you!’ I don’t know who was more excited!”

“I’ve got lots planned for Prue,” said Katie when the two were reunited in Torquay. “She’s going to get a taste of Tug of War, and she’s coming on my sister’s hen weekend!” 

Visiting Australia with YFC Travel meant Staffordshire member Katie Pollock made a friend for life – who she reunited with in Torquay!

BE A HOST

You don’t have to leave the country for a chance to broaden your horizons – being a host for an exchangee coming to this country is also a great way to learn about rural youth overseas. Prue Dennis is spending six weeks in England and Northern Ireland and is loving every minute of it.

“It’s a really great experience,” she said. “This is my first time out of Australia and I’m so grateful to people for opening up their homes to let me in. I’m not homesick yet but there are a few things that have happened where I think how much I’d like to share it with my parents or partner back home.”

Prue also knows how much fun it can be to act as a host – Rural Youth clubs in Tasmania are always looking forward to welcoming foreign exchanges.

“Our organisation is quite small – nothing like over here,” she said. “We’ve only got around 250 members in the whole state so you immediately know who the exchangees are because you’ve never seen them before.

“When the exchanges come over, it’s really exciting and everybody gets involved. We all have loads of fun.”

All the new YFC Travel trips for 2016 will be announced in September so look out for info on the website www.nfyfc.org.uk/yfctravel and NFYFC’s social media sites so you can book your trip of a lifetime!


18 June 2015

The largest ever survey into crime in rural areas has been launched in England, Wales and Northern Ireland to investigate the true impact of offences on countryside communities. The survey, launched by the National Rural Crime Network (NRCN)* and supported by the Home Office, is calling for people who work or live in rural areas to come forward and give their views on countryside crimes, the impact they have on the wider community and to help shape the future of crime prevention and rural policing.

The full scale of crime in rural areas has never before been assessed, which is why we are encouraging anyone living or working in rural areas to take part in the survey to help build a picture of what is a widespread but often misunderstood issue, which is why we are emailing. We need your help in spreading the message of this survey to your constituents. I attach a draft press release pledging your support, which we would like you to send to your local media, promote through your website and circulate on social media. The survey will be open until Wednesday 24 June and to complete the survey, you just need to visit http://www.nationalruralcrimenetwork.net/survey?member=CA.

Whilst official figures show rural crime, like crime in general, is falling, what we are concerned about is the wider implications of offences. The threat of crime can be as detrimental to people’s feeling of safety as crimes themselves so we are keen to find out more through this survey. Our aim is to build a clear picture of the issue to shape future policing delivery and ensure funding is spent where it is most needed, rather than simply being channelled to urban conurbations. The ultimate aim is to make rural communities safer.

*The National Rural Crime Network (NRCN) is supported by 29 Police and Crime Commissioners and police forces across England and Wales. The Network, established in July 2014, includes a wide range of organisations with an interest in community safety and rural affairs such as the Countryside Alliance and the Neighbourhood Watch.


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