SOUTH Gippsland women won two of the six categories in the Weekly Times’ 2017 Shine Awards last week.
The Shine Awards highlight the contribution and achievements of women across rural and regional Australia, with awards for Courage, Grace, Dedication, Belief, Passion and Spirit. The winner of each category receives a $2500 voucher from Harvey Norman.
Fish Creek pasture-raised pork farmer Amelia Bright and Sally Ruljancich, who has an organic lamb and beef farm at Dollar, were joint winners of the Belief category, for volunteering their time to set up (in April 2017) and run the Prom Coast Food Collective to increase the financial security of fellow small-scale farmers and growers.
“It’s really lovely to be recognised,” Sally said after the win. “I work full time outside of running the Collective with Amelia, and life is pretty busy for both of us.”
Sally said she and Amelia hadn’t yet decided how they were going to spend the prize money but that it would definitely help “keep things ticking along”.
The other local winners were mother and daughter Kirsten and Felicity Jones, who jointly took out the Grace award.
Kirsten grows garlic at Mirboo Farm while her daughter Felicity runs the Meeniyan Store, selling produce from more than 50 local farmers.
The pair also created Victoria’s first garlic festival, which brought thousands of garlic lovers from across the state to Meeniyan in February. Preparations for the 2018 festival are well underway.
Our farmers shine bright