International Women’s Day – 08 March
Women in Landcare – making a difference from the ground up
International Women’s Day celebrates the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women, and Landcare has an abundance of inspirational and passionate women at its heart. Last year’s National Landcare Awards saw the three individual categories taken out by women who are the driving force behind Landcare in their own communities. What better way to celebrate International Women’s Day than to recap and celebrate their achievements?
Rhonda Williams – Australian Government Individual Landcarer
Rhonda has volunteered a staggering 8,100 hours since joining Landcare in 2002! Since 1976, Rhonda, along with her husband Ross, has managed a profitable and sustainable farming enterprise in the south coast region of Western Australia. Landcare has always been an integral part of their system and the pair have shared knowledge with 20 field days and 30 trials on their farms. Rhonda’s significant and positive influence on the community has led her to represent Landcare at a local and regional level across 12 Landcare based organisations and local government.
Jill Richardson – Australian Government Landcare Facilitator or Coordinator
Jill Richardson has spent 25 years dedicated to furthering Landcare in Western Australia. She has led significant on-ground environmental works and behavioural change in sustainable agriculture and biodiversity conservation in the region through her involvement with Katanning Landcare. Jill is a connector, mentor, devil’s advocate, do-er, friend and “Landcare Mum” for large networks of NRM people. She is passionate about community-driven Landcare, a member of the National Landcare Network and inaugural Chairperson of the WA Landcare Network.
Naomi Edwards and Ella Maesepp – Manpower Young Landcare Leader (joint winners)
Another Katanning local, Ella has worked as a Landcare Officer in the Upper Blackwood area for 12 years, delivering millions of dollars’ worth of projects to protect biodiversity, manage salinity, increase agricultural sustainability and reduce individual carbon footprints. She works with farmers, children, townies, indigenous people, government agencies and community volunteers.
Ella is a former member of the Australian Landcare Council and lead author of “Engaging the 20-Somethings in Landcare”, helping Landcare Groups across Australia better understand their connection with Gen Y.
Passionate about intergenerational engagement in Landcare, Naomi’s most recent Landcare venture has involved co-founding Intrepid Landcare with Megan Rowlatt to inspire young people to act and lead with Landcare. This achievement builds on almost a decade of innovative Landcare initiatives including building the award-winning BeachCare program on Queensland’s Gold Coast. Networking, building partnerships and branding the perfect pitch are some of Naomi’s biggest strengths.
What all of these impressive women have in common is a passion for making a difference and a drive to do something about it. You can make a difference too! Why not look for a group in your local community and start making a difference today?