Implementing change and innovation through a farmer-based Mentoring Program

Project Commencement Date: September 2015

Project Completion Date: March 2018

Aim

The project aims to build the capacity of farmers in the region and improve sustainability through on farm changes made during the project.

Background

Agriculture is highly diverse in nature and, as a result, there is a wealth of knowledge and experience within the community. This project will engage those farmers who are willing to offer their support and advice to innovative young growers. The Liebe Group will facilitate this throughout the mentoring program and provide formal guidance through the process. This will involve workshops, surveys and periodic catch-ups to ensure the program and partnerships are running smoothly and where necessary changes be made.

Liebe Group members expressed their interest in this type of formalised mentoring program following on from the 2015-2016 Rabobank Knowledge Partnership Program. There was an identified need to utilise the assets within the local community to support the up-coming generation of farmers, as well as the reciprocal learning opportunities. Growers were highly interested in areas of business management, agronomy, farming systems, accounting, succession planning, natural resource management, soil health, social media and new technologies.

Check in’s with the mentors and mentees will be conducted throughout the program to ensure the partnerships are being maintained, as well as an opening and closing workshop. A survey will also be completed by participants of the program to measure the outcomes from the project including the success and opportunities for improvement within the program.

A case study will be compiled and extended on different mentoring partnerships to promote the on farm changes that have resulted.

 Project Outcome

The project outcome will be the increased capacity of farmers within the region, creating networking and partnership opportunities that are sustainable into the future.

Acknowledgements

This project is being delivered by the Liebe Group. It is supported by the Northern Agricultural Catchments Council, through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Programme.

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