Reid Stockfeeds has sponsored Cows Create Careers since its inception in 2004. For twelve years the Victorian-based company has supported the project by donating calf meal across all major dairy regions of Victoria.
“We’re a family business and we love to get involved with community organisations at a grass roots level,” Nick Reid, Reid Stockfeeds Sales and Marketing Manager said.
“My Dad had a strong relationship with South Gippsland farmers, we respected the people who were trying to get Cows Create Careers off the ground and we believed that they could take it places.”
Starting with dairy farmers with the Strzelecki Lions Club and nine Gippsland schools, Dairy Australia’s Cows Create Careers has now grown to incorporate thousands of students, teachers, farmers and advocates across the nation – a feat that could only be achieved with the ongoing support of sponsors.
“We are proud of our initial association with Cows Create Careers, especially looking at what it’s become today. The project is extremely important amongst our sponsorships because we see the level of education that it brings to students,” Nick said.
“It’s more than just awareness, it’s about providing opportunities to kids who want to base themselves rurally, or who want to know about the different career opportunities in the agricultural industry.”
Nick recognises the importance of a school-based agricultural project, especially one that promotes Australia’s clean, green and humane industry. When Nick attended the Goulburn Valley region’s 2016 Presentation Day, he witnessed hundreds of students actively engaged and demonstrating the knowledge they had gained through the project.
“Working in the industry, I see all the great things that are happening on farm and agriculture is vital to our growing population – so it’s important to keep the industry growing from strength to strength. One way to do that is to teach our young people what happens on farm and how dairy is produced,” he said.
“We hope, whether they are associated with dairy or not, that the students become advocates for our farmers, what they produce and how they create it.”
Several Reid Stockfeeds employees have also supported Cows Created Careers through volunteering as an industry advocate. Some completed the project as a student, and they are now in front of the classroom to discuss industry careers as an advocate.
Past employee of 14 years, Michael Tuhan, was also a strong advocate for the growth of the project in the Goulburn Valley region.
“Michael presented to a range of students in secondary schools. He also encouraged school participation and helped to take Cows Create Careers from predominately a Gippsland based educational project, to something that started to move into other regions. Since then, over the last decade, we’ve had around 10 of our nutritionists visit students to talk about their job, different roles on farm, and how to provide the best feed programs for calves.”
Reid Stockfeeds plan to keep supporting Cows Create Careers, a relationship that will continue to build the awareness of dairy industry careers and pathways.
“Practical, educational projects in our schools is incredibly important,” Nick said, “it’s good to know that our young people across the state – and now nationally – have a better insight into all the great things that our farmers do.”