National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs

Fun, Learning, and Achievement

24 February 2022

Results of an NFYFC survey revealed that many members are not aware of all of the opportunities available to them through their membership of the organisation.

Nearly 700 YFC members took part in NFYFC’s three surveys that asked questions about communications, training and development and the benefits of membership.

The results highlighted that a third of respondents were not aware of NFYFC’s suite of Curve training modules that can be delivered during a YFC meeting and more than half did not know who could deliver training in their county. 

Despite 77% of respondents being aware of the exclusive discounts being available to them only a third had used their membership to obtain a discount. 

Among the calls for new benefits were requests for a national event to bring members together from across England and Wales, better online access to services and more ways for members to know about the opportunities available to them.

Social media channels were the preferred option for communication with 75% stating this was the best method for them to find out what was happening at NFYFC, followed by email newsletters (45%) and social media group pages (34%). 

The results from all three surveys were presented to Council members during their Summit meeting, where they discussed future plans for the organisation. During the discussions, members made a list of some of the current ‘issues’ that they wanted to see changed or axed altogether.

Working groups are now being developed following on from the meeting, so that changes can start to be put into action. 

NFYFC Chair Ed Dungait said: “The feedback from the surveys really helped us to see what members want from the organisation and where we need to make changes. We will now be putting those plans into action so we can keep on improving the services we offer to members.” 


23 February 2022

Are you a Young Farmer who would like to represent your country (England and Wales) at this year’s World Congress of Soil Science in Glasgow 27 – 31 July 2022?

If you have a passion for improving your business and soil management skills, are studying or would like to share your current good practice, this challenge for aspiring young farmers could be an ideal opportunity for a team to work together and demonstrate English and Welsh skills to a global audience.

The British Society of Soil Science will be hosting the fourth International Soil Judging Contest, at Stirling in Scotland, as part of the 22nd World Congress of Soil Science. This contest is an opportunity to meet and learn with young soil scientists and farming practitioners from around the world. The last event was held four years ago in Brazil and while the soils (and the weather) were different, the spirit of learning and getting your hands dirty will continue. 

The event involves three days of teaching and learning with soil experts from across the world. This year, there is a greater focus on soil health and management practice. The aim is to provide a strong technical understanding of soil formation, identification and function, and the ability to identify key soil features that are indicators of soil health.

The competitive part, which takes place in the last two days of the event, will see teams visit soil pits and use their knowledge and experience to describe what they see. Winners will be announced at the opening ceremony of the 22nd World Congress of Soil Science in Glasgow, which begins on the last day of the contest (registration for the Congress is not necessary for participation in the contest).

The teams (of four who could be made up from different counties or areas within YFC) will be financially supported to travel and attend the conference by the Brian Chambers Soils Fund (BCSF).

Team members must be 18 or over, be available to travel to Glasgow for the duration of the competition and share their experience with the YFC membership via usual communication methods.

Interested? 

Further details on the soil judging contest can be found on the website of the British Society of Soil Science at Soil Judging Competition - British Society of Soil Science. Queries can be sent to Matt Aitkenhead at the James Hutton Institute. 

More resources: 

BSSS educational resources 

'Zoom into Soil’ webinar series. Most webinars include BASIS and NRoSO CPD points. 


23 February 2022

Supported by NFYFC, Low Carbon Agriculture show will take place on 8-9 March 2022, at the NAEC, Stoneleigh, to support farmers as they move through the agricultural transition. 

The event will provide practical guidance on sustainable land use, renewable energy generation and emission control, cutting through the noise to get to the heart of what new changes mean for farmers, by covering specific pressing topics such as policy, carbon storage, soil health, natural capital, net zero, renewable energy, low emission vehicles and agri-tech, as well as new topics including carbon farming, sustainable rural architecture, and water health.

Click here to view this year’s programme.

Low Carbon Agriculture show incorporates four expos including: ‘Environmental Business Expo’, ‘Farm Technology Expo’, ‘Energy Now Expo’ and ‘Low Emission Vehicles Expo’ and will feature its renowned multi-streamed conference, workshops, an exhibition, test drives of low emission vehicles and machinery and demonstrations of the latest innovations in agri-tech. 

Visit here to register for FREE and learn more.

 


23 February 2022

Changes to competitions and new travel opportunities were among the announcements in the five steering group reports presented during the first Council meeting of the year. 

Competitions 

The Competitions Steering Group confirmed a decision had been made about the Performing Arts competition for the 2022-23 programme, which was scheduled to be Drama. Wales YFC had requested that Pantomime be repeated in 2022-23 as some Wales counties had been unable to participate this year due to Covid-19 restrictions lasting longer in the country than in England. 

After lengthy discussion and a review of correspondence received, YFC members on the Competitions Steering Group recommended, a change to the Performing Arts competition from Drama to Entertainments next year. 

It was also confirmed that the date for the Sheep Shearing competition has changed to 14 July 2022 at the Great Yorkshire Show. The group also reminded YFC members that they had until 31 March 2022 to take advantage of a 50% discount on sheep shearing training with British Wool. 

Personal Development 

Highlights from the training survey were revealed by the Personal Development steering group Chair Polly Baines. A third of respondents to the survey were not aware of the Curve training modules and more than half did not know who held the positions of their County Trainers. The group will be using all of the feedback from the survey to guide future development of the training opportunities. 

There was more positive news about the YFC Travel programme as it was announced that YFC members could now apply for an NFYFC and Projects Abroad trip to Peru this summer. A trip to America will be launched soon and a YFC Ski trip is also being planned for 2023.  The group are also exploring travel opportunities for under 18s and will work with the Youth on this.

YFC AGRI 

Outgoing Chair of YFC AGRI Tom Pope, from Somerset FYFC, presented the group’s report to Council. Tom highlighted the amount of meetings the group held over the last year to work through many Government consultations relevant for the next generation to ensure young farmers’ voices were represented, as well as delivering discussion and training events, resource and research projects.

The group has worked closely with many industry organisations including the NFU Next Generation Forum to ensure the scheme Defra proposes for new entrants delivers the best outcome for members. The group encourages young farmers to attend the Defra webinar on 2 March to listen to the Defra New Entrants Scheme team present current thinking on a call for proposals to run pilots for incubators for new entrants and for an opportunity to give feedback.  

Membership & Marketing 

The Membership & Marketing Steering Group announced that the 2022 YFC Achiever Awards would have an in-person awards ceremony for the finalists to attend in February 2023. 

Plans are already underway for National Young Farmers’ Week 2022, which will have a British food and farming theme this year. James Nixey, Vice Chair of the Membership & Marketing group also revealed that the group is supporting the Chair of Council on a national event to mark NFYFC’s 90th anniversary. 

Youth Forum 

New Youth Forum Chair Rosie Finney from Horncastle YFC gave the report for the Youth Forum. Rosie explained the group had been discussing the roles of advisory members and club leaders and the need for more training or definitions, an issue that was also raised during the Summit meeting. 

The Youth Forum worked closely with The Farming Community Network in 2021 to help re-develop the Rural+ programme, which has only been delivered to 29 clubs so far. Uptake has been low due to the pandemic but Rosie urged clubs to book this session as soon as possible to help members as it offers wellbeing support. 

Motions for the AGM 

Members of the NFYFC Council have proposed an increase to associate membership subscription and will take the proposal to the Annual General Meeting (AGM) for members to vote on in April.

Associate members of the organisation currently pay £10, which enables them to enjoy the privileges of YFC club membership (except the competitions programme).  

The NFYFC Council has proposed increasing the associate subscription to £15. The income from the associate subscription is reserved to be used to support NFYFC’s training programme.  

Caryl Haf, Chair of the Wales Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs raised the topic of associate membership fees during a financial update from the Board of Management and after a discussion, the members of the Council proposed an increase. 

NFYFC Council has also proposed a motion for the AGM to encourage YFC members to actively source and promote British, local food and share positive farming messages in all YFC and community activities. 

The deadline for receiving amendments to motions is 12 Noon on Monday 21 March 2022.

YFC members from across England and Wales will be able to debate and vote on the motions at AGM on Sunday 24 April in Warwickshire. 


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