Open Farm Weekends, Agricultural Shows and Stock Judging Events have all been cancelled this season but that hasn't stopped Young Farmers' Clubs
21 April 2020
Open Farm Weekends, Agricultural Shows and Stock Judging Events have all been cancelled this season but that hasn't stopped Young Farmers' Clubs from showcasing their livelihoods and educating the public about agriculture
'It is of course a very strange time for us in the young farmers as normally this time of year would be full of competitions and exciting events coming up. Mind you we have a lot of members who are still working harder than ever on the front line whether it be in hospitals, in shops and of course on farms!' Naomi McConnell, Seskinore YFCU
Spa Young Farmers in County Down have adopted a novel route in keeping spirits high during lockdown. As the club is unable to meet for their usual busy calendar of outings and events, Spa have instead taken to social media to showcase what their members are getting up to.
Sarah Dorman, Spa YFC stated; “social media had become shrouded in negativity amidst the COVID-19 pandemic – we thought, what better way of highlighting the resilience and adaptability of the key workers in our club than through a positive online campaign.” As the clubs are unable to meet for their usual busy calendar of outings and events, Spa YFCU have taken to social media to showcase what their members are getting up to.
Using the hashtag SpaKeepsFarming, and with a different member of Spa YF every day, the club have been able to showcase a “Day in the life” on both Instagram and Facebook. The response has been extremely positive, with young farmers from other clubs all over Northern Ireland (and further afield in England, Scotland and Wales) logging in to see what members are getting up to on their farms in County Down.
Now coming up to its fourth week, we’ve seen around farms in Spa, Teconnaught, Dromara, Newcastle, Tyrella and we’ve even been in Armagh and Ballymoney! We’ve been on beef, sheep, dairy, pig and arable farms and it’s been great to see the wide range of skills and abilities that our members have when it comes to working within the ag industry.
County Antrim, club Glarryford YFC have used the platform TikTok to reach a younger audience, spread positivity and keep their members connected. In their comic videos the club has showcased that their new born lambs have moves to out dance Britney.
While in North Down, Ballywalter YFC, have been introducing followers to their club members, Juniour and Senior, showcasing what their members are doing while the country enters it's fourth week of Lockdown Protocols. Jessica Lee, Ballywalter YFC states, 'our main aim is to keep our members and friends safe as well as entertained and educated about what we are doing. We have ensured all government restrictions have been adhered to in the process.'