PinG members at the Hart Field Day.
Every year in September the Hart Field Site Group holds its annual field day, attracting more than 600 people from South Australia and beyond. One of the things Natalie Sommerville, local grain grower from Spalding, in SA’s mid-north, and the Partners in Grain (PinG) state reference group chair, noticed was that very few women attended the event.
So after the 2011 Hart Field Day, through PinG and the support of the GRDC and a SA Government Community Landcare Grant, she ran a women’s field day the day after the main event.
“When I spoke to women in my local community many were interested in learning about the research and trials that were happening at the Hart Site but there was a need to break the ice to attend such events which are heavily male-dominated,” she says.
“PinG provided the avenue for women to confidently attend, including female university students. The day was attended by over 60 women.”
In 2012, PinG decided to have a presence at the main field day, providing a tent where women that attended could meet other women. The tent also provided a space for anyone with small children so they could have a break from the field day and let the children play.
Ms Sommerville says PinG hopes to have another tent at the Hart Field Day in 2013 because it is important that women involved in decisions have access to research information.
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