There are several groups and organisations that you can belong to that will help you to expand your network and to grow your leadership and business skills.
Provinces … connecting real farmers; Federated Farmers represents over 26,000 farming and rural members throughout New Zealand.
A network of 24 provinces, together with associated area networks or branches, provides a locally based, democratic organisation that gives farmers a collective voice nationally and within each region.
The provincial networks work on local, regional and national issues to develop solutions and submissions on policy or requirements that impact the business of farming. They provide a network for discussion and collaboration on topical issues and initiatives, and have the ability to mobilise larger groups especially in response to adverse events.
The networks in the provinces are made up of real farmers who have a sound understanding of the local challenges. They also have links to other local business networks and to the Federation’s advocacy and support resources.
Website: Federated Farmers
The Lincoln University Alumni network is open to all graduates and those who have attended Lincoln, whether it was Canterbury Agricultural College, Lincoln College or Lincoln University. Graduates currently number over 30,000, live in 52 countries around the globe and range in age from nineteen to ninety-seven.
To remain connected to your place of study, receive regular communication and invitations to events.
Website: Lincoln Alumni
NZYF is a social organisation which is tonnes of fun with down to earth people – it’s a progressive and dynamic social network for rural youth which develops the leadership and personal skills of its members through participation and achievement.
Over 90 Clubs are situated around New Zealand and each club has its own identity and community spirit, backed by a national organisation. You make friends for life and develop your personal and practical skills by organising or participating in meetings, events, social activities and competitions.
You don’t need to be a farmer to join Young Farmers – a love of the land coupled with a willingness to participate and be an active member of your community is all you need.
There are also many leadership opportunities within NZYF.
The Red Meat Network, funded by the Red Meat Profit Partnership (RMPP), consists of six hubs based at Lincoln University, University of Waikato, Massey University, Otago University, Telford and Otiwhiti Station. Participating students meet monthly to listen to keynote speakers, network with industry leaders and discuss topical issues with other students . Each group has a facilitator who encourages critical thinking and discussion. The main aims are for participants to gain understanding of the red meat industry, meet potential future employers, create networks, become work-ready and build their leadership confidence.
Website: Red Meat Network
The Rural Business Network, funded by the RMPP and DairyNZ, brings farmers and rural business professionals together at regular events, with motivational speakers and inspiring topics. Through the sharing of ideas and innovative opportunities that these meetings provide, participants are likely to improve their on-farm productivity and increase their industry networks and collaboration with other like-minded individuals. There are nine network hubs running throughout the country: Northland, Waikato, Gisborne, Hawkes Bay, Manawatu, Mid Canterbury, South Canterbury, Otago and Southland; with several new networks planned.