Australian Farmer of the Year and Picture You in Agriculture celebrate a decade of amplifying our farmers voices

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Celebrating Women in Agriculture at 2019 Australian Farmer of the Year Awards. LtoR Meg Rice, Aimee Snowden, Lynne Strong, Sally Downie, Jackie Jarvis, Sarah Parker, Charlie Aves and Sally Murfett

Ten years ago an organisation called Picture You in Agriculture (PYiA) launched with the vision of creating a network of empowered young farmers to represent the positive and progressive face of Australian agriculture. At the same time Kondinin Group and ABC Rural joined forces to create the Australian Farmer of the Year Awards.

In the decade since PYiA team members have featured six times in the Awards. In 2011 PYiA founder and director Lynne Strong was runner up in the Farm Industry Leader of the Year category. In 2015 Anika Molesworth was recognised as the Young Australian Farmer. In 2017 Greg Mills won the Rural Consultant category. Dan Fox was runner up for the Young Australian Farmer in 2017 and in 2018 he won the award for Excellence in Innovation. This year Young Farming Champion Sally Downie has received the inaugural Agricultural Student of the Year Award.

“From the hottest, driest continent with some of the poorest soils on the planet, Australian farmers supply food for 60,000 people across the globe and to do this Australian agriculture requires talented people,” Lynne says. “PYIA works with our supporting partners to identify agriculture’s emerging talent and develop their problem-solving, creative, communication and teamwork skills. The legacy of our Young Farming Champion program is a network of young agricultural leaders creating efficient, profitable and climate resilient farming systems and the perception, in the general community, that agriculture is an exciting industry. We foster an environment where innovation, disruption and creativity are encouraged, where careers with purpose can grow limitlessly and where partnerships across sectors are created and nurtured.”

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Sally Downie wins Agricultural Student of the Year 

Congratulations to Sally on being recognised for her commitment to Australian agriculture. Congratulations also to all of our Young Farming Champions who work with young people in the community to strive for a better world each and every day.

You can read all the winners stories here

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Pick the winner of 2019 Archibull Prize

The 2019 Archibull Prize entries have been submitted and the judges are making their decisions. Now its your turn to pick the People’s Choice.

Who will it be?

Entries close 7th November 2019

Please make your selection in the poll below. If your would like to look at the entries from all angles you will find them here 

Showcasing our 2019 dairy and eggs Archibull Prize entries

The Archibull Prize connects school students with the people and the places behind the food we eat and the natural fibres we use. Since its inception over 300,000 students have been engaged in courageous conversations about how farmers and the community can work together to create a world with zero hunger and zero waste.

Australia’s dairy and egg industries have been reinterpreted during The Archibull Prize this year so let’s meet the Archies for our milk and eggs.

Each year the world looks forward to the creative talents of the entire Beaudesert State High School as they bring quirky and imaginative angles to their Archie. Their 2019 entry is no exception incorporating real bovine bones, braille, a cut-out Herringbone dairy and a robotic milking arm.

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“We did not want our cow to look like a cow but more a piece of art. When the dairy guys came out to see us at the start and we shared our ideas Paul made a comment that he wanted the real world to understand that dairy farmers were not just ‘hicks’ but that there was real science to farming and that dairy farmers did more than just milk cows.”

Beyond the science Beaudesert students also looked at the reasons behind the decline of the Australian dairy industry.

“If our cow can make an impact and a few people understand then, perhaps, that can turn into many and farmers can get more help and assistance through these tough times. Milk needs to be treated like the ‘white gold’ that it is and not something that is considered just a ‘staple’ and in everyone’s fridge.”

Also taking a close look at the Australian dairy industry was East Loddon College in rural Victoria with their Archie named Tandarra to Toorak. Art students from Years 9, 10 and 12 explored the ways milk production supports both rural and urban communities and on their classic black and white cow they painted a road from the country dairy to the city fridge.

“We have built the city skyline on top of the cow in a ‘cartoonish’ manner to convey how we, in the country, are quite removed from the city life and we don’t know much about it. We can only imagine that it is the same for people living in the city that they don’t know about the dairy industry, but because it is so important to us and such a big part of our lives we want to teach them and help them learn about it.”

Students of East Loddon are proud and appreciative of living in a rural community with a close association to dairy farmers. They used ear tags and milking cups on their Archie, which were donated by a local farmer, and were thankful for the time farmers made to speak with them. Farmer Michael Lawry also appreciated the interest shown by the students:

 “I believe that it takes the shared and reinforced values of a community to successfully raise a child and I believe that we live in such a community.”

The ever-enthusiastic YFC Jasmine Whitten guided two schools through the world of egg production and did you know Australia Never Delivers Rotten Eggs? That was the anagram for ANDRE Kluckin, the Archie entry from Picnic Point High School.

“We have created a giant egg carton that symbolically represents all eggs produced in Australia and sold in shops. It explores the three main methods of producing eggs; free range, caged and barn. Each method has many pros and cons, which creates an ongoing debate for consumers.”

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When discussing their creative designs for Andre the students relied heavily on input from their YFC.

Jasmine made us think about the marketing strategies of egg cartons. The free range egg cartons usually have more bright and detailed logos and reflect open spaces and create an eye catching logo for the consumer. Caged eggs usually have plain labels with limited colour. Our logo and carton art is bright and fun to entice the consumer to buy our product. We have shown that all eggs, regardless of the farming technique, are carefully packaged and freshly available for people to buy and enjoy.”

Also exploring the world of eggs and poultry were the Year 8 Humanities students from Granville Boys High School who created Basketbull.

“While our Archibull is now a basket of eggs, the poultry industry certainly does not put its eggs in one basket. Rather, it incorporates biosecurity, food security, farm animal welfare, considered breeding practices for various types of poultry, the egg industry, the impact of climate change and environmental issues into a sustainable poultry industry practice that can feed, clothe, and power a hungry nation.”

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Using still-life and impressionist painting influences, mathematical artistic patterns and even chicken wire, each egg on Basketbull represents a different sector of the industry, and the Archie as a whole reflects the famous painting Panier D’Oeufs by Henri-Horace Roland Delaporte.

“Panier D’Oeufs translates in English to ‘basket of eggs’. Delaporte painted his masterpiece in 1788 which was also a significant year for the Australian poultry industry because it was the year that the first poultry arrived in Australia with the First Fleet. These new arrivals included 18 turkeys, 29 geese, 35 ducks, 122 fowls and 87 chickens.”

Mega shoutout to our supporting partners as you can see all the schools and students involved in 2019 Archibull Prize experience found it an invaluable learning tool on so many levels_2019 Proudly supported by

Showcasing our 2019 Wool Archies Part Two

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The Archibull Prize connects school students with the people and the places behind the food we eat and the natural fibres we use. Since its inception over 300,000 students have been engaged in courageous conversations about how farmers and the community can work together to create a world with zero hunger and zero waste.

Five Young Farming Champions with support from Australian Wool Innovation partnered with 10 schools studying wool industry in The Archibull Prize and showed that issues such as drought, climate change and mental health are prominent in student minds. The Archie action continues and here we take a look at more schools studying the wool industry, starting with the always surprising Hurlstone Agricultural High School who delved into the world of magic.

Shambull the African Witch Doctor is the Archie designed by Year 10 Visual Arts at Hurlstone to represent drought and climate change. Made entirely from felt Shambull explores the theme of lush to dry.

The piece depicts an area of Broken Hill, the area of New South Wales most affected by the drought. It’s the ending of a day, which thematically represents a change. It also represents how we are running out of time to find a solution to the environmental problems facing the industry right now.”

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Hurlstone was assisted by YFC Wilcannia Merino farmer Bessie Thomas and and Broken Hill farmer Anika Molesworth who also inspired the African influence after telling the students of how her family uses African breeds of drought-tolerant sheep.

From this, we decided to delve further into the rich culture of Africa. We immediately felt drawn to the idea of traditional witch doctors masks. Witch doctors, in essence, are members of societies who aid others using magic and medicine. This concept of healing felt extremely appropriate as a message of hope in a tough, overwhelming time. They personify healing, representing our dreams for future positive environmental change.”

 

Over at Granville South Creative and Performing Arts High School students continued with their pop-art theme from 2018 to create another DIVA with a social conscious. One side of DIVA 2.0 depicts the wool supply chain from paddock to garment; the other, inspired by veterinarian and YFC Dione Howard, shows internal organs of a cow – made from wool!

DIVA 2.0 sits on a bed of green woollen crocheted grass full of beautiful blooming daffodils and forget me nots, because we wouldn’t want to forget the iconic wool industry and should be promoting its quality and use throughout our lives.”

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DIVA 2.0 exerted her social conscious this year by collecting wool products for distribution to Sydney’s homeless.

“DIVA 2.0 is brightly coloured and literally sparkles but the most unique part about her is that she is giving back. She has not only promoted and encouraged the use of ethical practices and the welfare of animals through her design but she has literally collected woollen goods from our local community to give back to the wider community. DIVA is soft, generous and caring.”

Elizabeth Moo-Carthur (or Lizzie for short) is the name of the cow-now-sheep Archie from St Johns Park High School who are situated near the original farms owned by Australia’s wool pioneers, the Macarthurs.

Our Archie has metamorphosed into a merino sheep rather than keeping its original form of a cow. To achieve this change, Lizzie’s horns were removed, which taught us about the safety of working with fibreglass, learned from our Industrial Arts teacher. To construct the horns which are indicative of a merino sheep, we fashioned the curve from paper cups, recycled wire coat hangers, papier maché, and lots of masking tape. By the addition of real wool and painting the face to make her look like a sheep, Lizzie’s transformation was complete. Lizzie is trans-species, and we do not judge her – we accept her for who she is.”

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Using jigsaw-shaped pieces Lizzie takes the viewer on a journey through the wool industry, employment, climate change and biosecurity – the latter inspired by a visit from YFC Lucy Collingridge.

We did not know very much about the need for, or importance of, biosecurity before meeting Lucy. A range of microscopic images of bacteria, such as Dermatophilus congolensis that effect sheep and wool are represented symbolically in jigsaw pieces by brightly painted styrofoam balls, some with pipe-cleaner filaments and some without. Red and white twisted pipe cleaners represent the blood sucking parasite Barber Pole Worms (Haemonchus contortus), which can be fatal for all types of sheep.”

When the blank Archie turned up at Skillset Senior College in Bathurst it had a broken ear so, rather than fix it, students drew inspiration from Vincent Van Gogh (who cut off part of his own ear) and combined this with indigenous influences.

Our students were given the chance to work with a local Wiradjuri artist Kantandra Mackay. She helped teach the students how to create works that allowed them to express themselves in a range of ways. Exploring indigenous, modernist and personal approaches to artmaking and personal expression was one of the key features of our project.”

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YFC Peta Bradley was also instrumental in guiding the creation of the Archie, named Interknitted Communities.

Our Young Farming Champions visit was amazing! As part of an initial ZOOM visit Peta Bradley gave the students inspiration through her use of google maps, the students really wanted to explore the idea of an aerial view, creating ‘paddocks’ that were joined together. When Peta came to our school, the students were so proud to show her their progress and to get to ask her more questions about the wool industry. Each square on our entry was created by an individual student who created a design based on country, the wool industry or agriculture more broadly.”

Irrawang High School explored wool by focussing on the important, but sometimes overlooked, profession of shearing. Inspired by world-champion shearer Hilton Barrett their Archie (named Hilton) looks at traditional shearing and a future where sheep are shorn by robotics.

The front half of the cow is highlighting the process of how a traditional sheep shearer needs to approach a sheep and what cuts should be done in order for the sheep to be as relaxed as they can, but also for the shearer not to strain themselves too much. The red lines across the back at the front are symbolic of how the machine being developed would try and cut from research images.”

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LED lighting leads the viewer across Hilton to show a shearing shed, the Help ‘em shearing logo (an initiative started by Barrett), the direction of shearing cuts and a robotic arm. Pops of blue though out represent the shearer’s singlet.

The final part of our cow is the small robot arm, which is a symbol of the larger concept of robotics, and it can perform a simple task like pick up some fleece from the shearing shed floor.”

 

Mega shoutout to our supporting partners as you can see all the schools and students involved in 2019 Archibull Prize experience found it an invaluable learning tool on so many levels

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Showcasing our 2019 Archibull Prize Wool Archies – Part One

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The Archibull Prize connects school students with the people and the places behind the food we eat and the natural fibres we use. Since its inception over 300,000 students have been engaged in courageous conversations about how farmers and the community can work together to create a world with zero hunger and zero waste.

Five Young Farming Champions with support from Australian Wool Innovation partnered with 10 schools studying wool industry in The Archibull Prize and showed that issues such as drought, climate change and mental health are prominent in student minds. Let’s meet the first five Archies from our wool schools.

In an imaginative and interactive expression of the wool industry Merrylands High School highlighted mental health on their Archie.

“Our Archibull sculpture explores the importance of mental health support networks for Australian farmers and the ripple effect that climate change, bio-security, employment and healthy communities bring to Australian farmers that increases their mental health diagnosis and suicide rates.”

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In a nod to the ironic, students have painted sheep jumping over fences as a renowned method of relaxation, pointing out that for wool farmers this is not necessarily a break from work. They have also included a replica brain scan on their Archie’s back to show that mental health is not always visible.

Outlining the brain scan is a dotted line of light projecting from within the cow. The light pulsates blue and white in an irregular sequence which symbolises the lights in medical practices when undergoing Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scans – a form of neuroimaging. The audience unconsciously alter their breathing rhythm as a physical response to the lights. This reaction draws a link to breathing as a form of meditation, a technique for resting the mind and promoting a positive wellbeing.”

From farming to fashion was the theme for Sean the Cow from Crestwood High School, who illustrated the wool supply chain from paddock to processing to garments.

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With guidance from YFC Katherine Bain students charted their own learnings about the wool industry on Sean, and the effects of climate change on farming. As their knowledge progressed so did their Archie until it ended up with a manufacturing sculpture inserted into its belly.

“Sean the Cow is unique because it can be used as a visual resource to educate others on the wool industry in Australia. We explored the main components that make up the industry and applied our individual strengths to portray these on the different sections of the cow. Some of us were knitters and made accessories for Sean to wear, some are painters and represented different components of the wool industry through images. Others explored sculpture and created an intricate sculpture representing the manufacturing process for inside the cow; and others used different materials to create texture and design.”

Greystanes High School enlisted the help of YFC Lucy Collingridge to guide them through their wool journey and they came up with an Archie divided in two.

“On one side we focused on the land or the farm and tried to show the effects of climate change. On the other side of our cow we wanted to tell the story of wool products and celebrate it being one of the most common fibres. We wanted this side of the sculpture to be filled with wool”.

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The Greystanes students obviously enjoyed making their eye-catching and brightly coloured Archie using wool and really encapsulated the 2019 Archibull theme.

Throughout this wonderful experience we have enhanced our creative skills and ideas, learnt about the wool industry and much more from our Young Farming Champion Lucy Collingridge and become closer as a team by working together on our unique Archibull. Our Archibull demonstrates that feeding, clothing and powering a hungry nation is a shared responsibility and that everyone should do their part to help each other.”

Over at the Manly Selective Campus of Northern Beaches Secondary College students participated in the 2019 Archibull as part of an extra-curricular enrichment program. Volunteering their time they created Moorino to help everyday Australians learn how to support the Australian wool industry and to show the connection between community and industry.

“This connection is clearly portrayed through the centrepiece of our artwork, the loom, with all the strands of wool coming together to symbolise collaboration and connection throughout Australia.”

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Moorino illustrates many aspects of the wool industry including drought, water usage, carbon footprint, farming charities, the Australian Made logo, woollen garments and a custom made wool stamp from YFC Sam Wan. Students also incorporated their recent actions of striking from school in climate change protests.

“Human footprints walk alongside sheep prints the same way Australia’s community and farming industry must work together to maintain a healthy community. Though there is a contrast between the dark grey and light green, the gradient between them shows that change will not be immediate and our community must take the time to become sustainable.”                                                                                                                                                                        

Keeping with the climate change theme Burwood Girls High School took a dark and foreboding look at the future with their creation of Apocalypse Cow.

Our Archie is unique because it is a direct call to action to address the climate emergency that our planet is currently facing. This is a threat that will only continue to progress unless action is taken straightaway. Our Archie is unique because it is not aiming to be polite or gentle about the issue.”

Drawing on the words of climate campaigner Greta Thunberg the head of Apocalypse Cow is vibrant blue representing health and the colours used gradually morph into darker shades representing an uncertain future. Bright pom poms scattered about represent hope. All over the cow are climate change messages.

Multi layered materials covering the Archie’s eyes symbolise the aimlessness and blindness a large population of the world holds in regards to the climate emergency. Finally, our Archie is adorned with a vibrant crown consisting of woollen pom poms as well as an array of native Australian flora. This aims to offer a glimmer of hope. We as a species can still hold onto the beauty of our world, we just need to embraces new changes.”

 

Mega shoutout to our supporting partners as you can see all the schools and students involved in 2019 Archibull Prize experience found it an invaluable learning tool on so many levels

_2019 Proudly supported by

2019 Archibull Prize – Introducing our Grains and Horticulture Archies

The Archibull Prize connects school students with the people and the places behind the food we eat and the natural fibres we use. Since its inception over 300,000 students have been engaged in courageous conversations about how farmers and the community can work together to create a world with zero hunger and zero waste.

Our 2019 entries are in and over the next week we will be showcasing them in a series of blog posts

From vast acreages of wheat to intensive paddocks of salad greens, plants feed and clothe us. Let’s have a look at the Archies representing grains and horticulture.

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Chronibull is the brightly coloured grains entry from Wee Waa High School with a GPS base station on its head, silos along its back and a tractor and spray boom above its tail.

“Our artwork “Chronibull” aims to chronicle the development of the grains industry to the sustainable industry it is today and providing grains to feed and power the worlds growing population.”

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Ably assisted by YFC Casey Onus, Wee Waa students looked at the history of grain production from aboriginal firestick farming, through to conventional farming and finally the era of regenerative agriculture with no till and controlled traffic farming. The school used this environmentally-aware ethos in the creation of Chronibull.

“We used a lot of recycled materials that would have otherwise been waste including the paper pulp, the boom equipment from a scrap pile at our local machinery dealer and a used GPS station. We used techniques such as decoupage to enhance our collage as well as mixing soil with paint for the creation of the soil on the hooves that is the foundation of the crop.”

YFC Emma Ayliffe guided Lake Cargelligo Central School on their grains journey, which produced an Archie with its very own hydroponic system and live plants.

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“Archiponics is a working aquaponics/hydroponics system. The cow is drinking from ‘Lake Cargelligo’ through a ‘straw’ and the water flows into a PVC growing tube located in the Archie’s back. The water flows back through into the pond for recycling. The system works with solar power and is to represent where agriculture is headed to in the future; renewable power and sustainable growing of plants in a system then can produce greater amounts of food in a modified environment.”

This Archie even includes a tap on its tail with droplets representing responsibility from a global to local level.

“Everyone plays a part in the responsibility, with the students realising that food security starts local. They cannot rely on having food if they only rely on being fed by the rest of the world.”

 Out of the grains paddocks and into the salads was Canterbury College from southern Queensland with YFC Tayla Field providing a unique insight. Students created the eye-catching Heather the Horticulture Heifer to portray the effects of rain and no-rain on horticulture. With 3D sculpturing Heather incorporates grains, newspaper clippings of weather reports, LED lighting and a central cut-out showing a truck transporting hay.

“We felt that this was an important scene to represent and is aimed to create awareness of the hay runners who are assisting our industries through these times.”

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Heather also uses unique QR codes, which can be scanned by the viewers who are then linked to a song, an infographic, the ABC website, games and the school Archibull blog.

“This allows her to ‘tell a story’ beyond her sole visual representation. Given the advancements of technology in the Agriculture industry we think this pushed Heather into the current modern world and makes her unique.”

Staying in QLD Tayla then moved onto McAuley College where Year 7 students worked on the project in their own time with no class time allocated. Wow! Welcome to the competition Boots McCowley.

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The students focussed their studies on the Scenic Rim area to come up with an Archie rich in local connection. A map of the region spreads across Boots’ back like a patchwork quilt.

“This patchwork also wraps around the cow like a comforting blanket, representing the interconnected nature of the industries working the land together; the value of every small part of the supply chain to the success of the whole industry, knitted into the economic, social and environmental aspects of the Scenic Rim region.”

This is the first year McAuley College has studied agriculture and huge congratulations go to all the students who completed such in depth research, planning and construction in their own time.

“(Boots McCowley) will become a legacy item for the school. We decided to dedicate the considerable time, effort and resources to this project to mark an important milestone in our College’s history as we kick off the first class of Agricultural Studies. This is an important addition to the culture of the school, and promoting the shared values of this community and the mission of the Archibull Prize seemed deeply important, connected, and authentic.”

Mega shoutout to our supporting partners as you can see all the schools and students involved in 2019 Archibull Prize experience found it an invaluable learning tool on so many levels

_2019 Proudly supported by

Anika Molesworth inspiring the next generation of changemakers and proving distance is no barrier to conecting rural and urban

 

“When I hear about what these students are doing – I could not be prouder!

Having youth talk so passionately about climate change solutions for a sustainable agriculture sector makes my heart sing.

Sometimes I have to pinch myself that I am part of the Picture You in Agriculture  programs which connect me in far western NSW to students 1,000 kms away so we can share ideas and stories. There are no other programs which make such an impact on the lives of young people – both rural and urban – like these ones, when it comes to farming and sustainability.”

Anika Molesworth Young Farming Champion,  Australin Financial Reveiw 2019 100 Women of Influence, Young Australian of the Year Finalist

Students participating in The Archibull Prize and Kreative Koalas love getting visits from their Young Farming Champions but it’s not always possible for the two to meet physically. Enter technology. Using tools such as Zoom and Skype YFC Anika Molesworth recently took her climate change message to James Erskine Public School (JEPS) and Hurlstone Agricultural High School (HAHS).

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Anika and the students from Hurlstone Agricultural High School 

Students from JEPS were already on a sustainability trajectory before a giant white fibreglass koala landed on their doorstep. They have been involved in Clean Up Australia Day and National Tree Day, they maintain a vegetable garden, a sensory garden and a bee garden, and they recycle paper and cardboard weekly. They have begun collecting recyclable containers through Return and Earn and have used the credit to adopt a orangutan through WWF.

They are also using their Kreative Koala to focus on climate change and so Anika was a perfect fit to virtually zoom into the classroom. “Anika described life on her farm and how it is affected by climate change and the kids were like little sponges and asked some very relevant questions,” teacher Taryn Pears says. “The kids wanted to know what they could do and after listening to Anika they were saying things like ‘I’m going to waste less food’ and ‘I’m going to take shorter showers’. Anika targeted them very well.

“Personally, I was blown away by the number of young women in agriculture. I have some female students who I think would make outstanding agriculturists and Anika has definitely sparked their curiosity.” Taryn Pears Teacher Erskine Park Public School

 

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Anika and the students from James Erskine Public School 

Down the road from JEPS secondary students at HAHS are working on another masterpiece for The Archibull Prize as they study sustainability and biosecurity in the sheep and wool industry.

“We were able to get in touch with a Young Farming Champion, Anika Molesworth, via a Skype call, in which she discussed the effects of climate change on far western NSW and gave us insights on her view on how to tackle the issue as the young generation,” the students said in their Archie blog. “We could all definitely sense her strong passion towards her agricultural work as she educated our team with her amazing presentation on how we, as individuals, could make a difference to climate change with our social, political and consumer influence.”

Using modern platforms of communication Anika is having effective and inspiring conversations with both primary and secondary students – the next generation of young climate champions.

Check out this very clever call to action from the students at Hurlstone Agricultural High School

Hurlstone Agricultural High School entry in the animation section of The Archibull Prize 2019