The United Nations’ theme for this International Day of Rural Women is “Building rural women’s resilience in the wake of COVID-19,” to create awareness of rural women’s struggles, their needs, and their critical and key role in our society. AgriFutures Australia Managing Director John Harvey said with COVID-19, and the absence of physical events where we usually come together to share one another’s stories and achievements, it’s even more important to jump online and continue to celebrate the contributions of women to rural Australia.
“We will be showcasing inspiring women who are playing a critical role in enhancing and developing our agricultural industries and communities,” said Mr Harvey.
Some of these women include Margie Bale, one of Australia’s only camel veterinarians. Margie’s most recent achievement is a research project supported by our AgriFutures Australia’s Emerging Industries Program which saw the development of a new test that can confirm pregnancy in wild camels.
“Now there is a simple blood test for camel pregnancy that can be performed safely, efficiently, and reliably at the point of capture. Buyers from camel dairies have confidence now when they’re expanding their herds with wild camels, and we’re all not relying on the common theory that a pregnant camel holds her tail straight all the time,” said Ms Bale.
Meanwhile our 2019 Tasmanian AgriFutures Rural Women’s Award State Winner, Dr Anh Nguyen has been busy making new batches of wine while bunkered down in Tasmania during COVID-19. Unable to travel overseas due to the global restrictions, nothing stopped her from launching a new wine product in Vietnam and building an automatic frost control system, which is driven by artificial intelligence.
“It’s pretty cool to be able to sleep through the night during the frost season and let artificial intelligence take over, no error, no feeling interference, it’s all based on data and science.”
The profiles of rural women across many of the industries AgriFutures Australia works with, will be published on the AgriFutures Australia’s website and social media channels. Online and physical events to mark International Day of Rural Women will also be shared.
Businesses across Australia are encouraged to use the hashtag #hatsofftoruralwomen across their own social media channels to share the stories of the rural, regional and remote women they work with on a daily basis and who inspire them.