Dairy women form new sup­port net­work

The Galloway News - - COUNTRYSIDE -

The launch of the Dum­fries and Gal­loway ini­tia­tive, which aims to help and sup­port women work­ing in the dairy in­dus­try, got off to a roar­ing start last week.

The Dum­fries and Gal­loway Dairy Women’s Net­work was set up by dairy farmer Tracey Roan, Bore­land of Col­vend Farm, and sup­ported by NFU Scot­land Dum­fries and Gal­loway Re­gional Man­ager Teresa Dougall.

The meet­ing was well at­tended with more than 20 women from the in­dus­try get­ting along to the Lau­rie Arms, Haugh of Urr, to share their ex­pe­ri­ence and ex­per­tise.

As well as Tracey and Teresa, those in at­ten­dance in­cluded Gemma Cooper of NFUS; Heather Wild­man from Saviour As­so­ciates and Stella Mil­som, Dum­fries and Gal­loway Health and Well­be­ing in the Farm­ing Com­mu­nity pro­ject co-or­di­na­tor.

The group con­sisted of farm­ers’ wives and part­ners, farm work­ers, vets, agri con­sul­tants - the busi­ness ex­pe­ri­ence around the ta­ble was ex­tra­or­di­nary and al­lowed for ex­cel­lent dis­cus­sion - with many vol­un­teer­ing as­sis­tance and venues for fu­ture events.

The group is open to all women, of all ages, in agri­cul­ture but it is pri­mar­ily con­cen­trated on dairy in the Dum­fries and Gal­loway area.

The fo­cus of the meet­ing was to de­cide on what the pur­pose of the group is go­ing to be and what they would like to see achieved in the fu­ture.

De­ci­sions were made to or­gan­ise reg­u­lar train­ing, farm vis­its, meet­ings and so­cial events to take place across the re­gion and some­times be­yond.

Tracey Roan, who has been fea­tured in the re­cent tv pro­gramme ‘This Farm­ing Life’, said: “What a great turn out for the first meet­ing. It was re­ally pos­i­tive and en­cour­ag­ing to have a room full of ladies who wanted to hear more about the Dum­fries and Gal­loway Dairy Women Net­work.

“With the meet­ing be­ing very in­for­mal, it al­lowed every­one the op­por­tu­nity to chat about what they would like to get out from the net­work and there is cer­tainly go­ing to be plenty meet­ings planned for the com­ing months from prac­ti­cal, hands-on farm calf sig­nal train­ing to of­fice-based book keep­ing and of­fice man­age­ment. There will be some­thing for every­one.

“We would like to thank every­one who came along and also to the Lau­rie Arms for host­ing us.”

Teresa Dougall, NFUS Re­gional Man­ager for Dum­fries and Gal­loway, said: “NFU Scot­land are de­lighted to be sup­port­ing Tracey and the net­work in mov­ing for­ward. It was fan­tas­tic to see such a good turnout at the first meet­ing with pos­i­tiv­ity and ideas com­ing through for its fu­ture.

“The back­ground of ex­pe­ri­ence around the ta­ble was fan­tas­tic and can only help this net­work to grow from strength to strength.”

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