RURAL WOMEN: Anthea Howe and Jemma Meyer at the Women in Ag conference at Jimbour Homestead in Jimbour on Tuesday, October 16 2018.
RURAL WOMEN: Anthea Howe and Jemma Meyer at the Women in Ag conference at Jimbour Homestead in Jimbour on Tuesday, October 16 2018. Meg Bolton

Women in Ag prioritise mental health

RURAL communities are renowned for their mateship, they are known for being genuine and honest, but recently they have also become known for their struggle with depression.

Women in Ag brought this to the forefront of their inaugural luncheon held at Jimbour House on Tuesday with organisers uniting rural women to show them they are not alone.

Committee member Edwina McVeigh said the day was an opportunity for women to enjoy themselves while learning new approaches to assist with life's challenges.

"It's their day, they can get some tools and strategies from the speeches, they can take home shopping, they can bring the kids, they can have some drinks.

Fashion show at the Women in Ag conference at Jimbour Homestead in Jimbour on Tuesday, October 16 2018.
Fashion show at the Women in Ag conference at Jimbour Homestead in Jimbour on Tuesday, October 16 2018. Meg Bolton

"We get so caught up in our everyday lives, whether its working or being a mum or running properties or supporting husbands or looking after children ... so I think it's really important that we get the ladies together and have a really good day.”

The day exceeded expectations attracting more than 370 supporters, who travelled from across the Western Downs and beyond to attend the event.

Along with patrons, the occasion also attracted many rural businesswomen who showcased their work.

I love Scarves co-owner Toni Graetz said the event was an opportunity to support people struggling with mental health.

"Uniting women today is just premium, and the same thing needs to be done for men in rural communities,” Ms Graetz said.

MENTAL HEALTH SUPPORT: I Love Scarves co-owner Toni Graetz wears the limited addition scarf.
MENTAL HEALTH SUPPORT: I Love Scarves co-owner Toni Graetz wears the limited addition scarf. Meg Bolton

Proceeds from the day will be donated to mental health organisation Are You Bogged Mate which encourages men in outer-city areas to talk about depression.

Business I Love Scarves provided additional support to the cause by donating $10 from every limited edition scarf sold to the cause.

The afternoon was also an opportunity to network.

Author Kim Storey attended the event to display her book What Does a Farmer Look Like, which breaks down stereotypes.

"The whole purpose of my book is to try and bust that stereotype image of the old bloke with overalls and a pitchfork.

"Rural women are farmers, they're mothers, business owners, they're a vital part of our rural community.”


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