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ERF Newsletter - April 2016
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Welcome to our new Management Committee

ERF Management Committee’s ex-officio member and South Coast NRM representative Dylan Gleave presided as returning officer at the AGM, which saw the election of the 2016 management committee members and executives.
Amy Vickers, Yvette Mansted, Claire Mitchell, Rex Drabik, Margie Thomas-Close, Denise Guymer, Rose Riley, David Ford, Joe Meccariello, Kymberly Roberts and Rob Simpson were elected to the committee. Rose Riley will serve as chair, with vice-chair Amy Kennaugh Vickers, secretary Rex Drabik and treasurer David Ford making up the committee executive.
Update from the ERF AGM 2015/6
Cheerful chatter and laughter emanated from the Pier Hotel’s Cocktail Bar when ERF members gathered earlier this year, for the AGM, rescheduled after the November 2015 fires. ERF members, old and new, gathered to enjoy nibbles and drinks before getting down to business. 

ERF's Chair, Rose Riley, outlined the year from her perspective, saying 2015 was a successful year for the organisation. “During the last year, ERF secured funding from the Federal Government and the Shire  of Esperance for the Smart Living, Sustainable Living project that will be rolled out from February 2016. ERF will be focussing on a year of sustainability with workshops on topics ranging from growing food to improving soil.”

She also spoke of the funding secured for extensive fencing and revegetation at the Walter’s property at Cascade through the State NRM funds and from the Road Safety Commission to support the Esperance Growers Market.

Reports from the Chair, Treasurer and Executive Officer, in combination painted a picture of ERF as an organisation which is, like most not-for-profit groups, feeling the financial "pinch" as a result of the current financial climate but that continues to transform from an organisation with a history of Landcare and conservation on broadacre properties, to a far more expansive role as a group which will work towards "nurturing a sustainable Esperance".
New Executive Officer
ERF has been lucky enough to secure the services of the amazingly creative Chelsea Templeton as its new Executive Officer. Chelsea will be working for ERF part-time, carrying out the wide range of administrative tasks and project work that form part of the EO role.
Now over to Chelsea to introduce herself:
Hi everyone! My name is Chelsea Templeton and I’m the new Executive Officer for Esperance Regional Forum (ERF). Originally from Albury, NSW, I moved to Esperance with my husband Ross, and my three children;  Max, Harry and Mia, in 2012. At the time, my husband was transferred here with his employer John Holland, and after what was supposed to be an 18 month contract, we fell in love with the area, and the people, and decided to stay. My photography business “Proof of Life” started to snowball, and I was frantically busy, taking family portraits and wedding photos nearly every weekend. But after three years I decided it was time to focus on my own family, and a calmer way of life, so I retired from photography, and went searching for a new challenge!
 
ERF offers me not only that new challenge, but an exciting opportunity to plant myself within the community and grow a more sustainable lifestyle here, for my children and my family. I look forward to the projects coming up and to meeting all of you during my time with ERF!!

Chelsea will be supported in her role as Executive Officer by former EO, Dorothy Henderson, who will take on a new role as ERF's dedicated Communications Officer. 
Grow Local Workshops
The Federal Government 25th Anniversary Landcare grant of $20,000 and the Shire of Esperance community grant of $9,000 received in 2015 have been combined to create ERF's Grow Local: Skills for Sustainability Project. Grow Local will help build the skills and knowledge of people in the Esperance region, across urban and rural areas.
As part of this project, ERF enlisted the skills of Raana Scott to develop an initial project plan and Tanya Jenkyn of Curds and Whey Design Creatives, was enlisted to develop a brand for Grow Local for use on promotional material during the year.
ERF worked with the Cannery Kitchen Garden to help provide a Wicking Beds 101 workshop, held at the Cannery on over 18 and 19 March. These two workshops was hands on showing participants how to construct water saving, wicking garden beds using demonstration beds at the Kitchen Garden.
Final planning is now underway for the next workshops which will include hands on activities like pasta making and fermenting and property planning and healthy soils for small landholders.
An example of the new branding by the incredibly talented Tanya Jenkyn from Curds and Whey.
State NRM Project: Connecting the Gaps at Cascade.
With over 4,000 trees in the ground on-site at the Walter’s Cascade property, and 9.5km of fencing erected, this project is well underway and on track for completion in October 2016. Over 70ha of land will be protected and rehabilitated as a result of this State Government NRM Program funded project.
Suitable native seed has been collected by Jakril Seeds, and the order is in the process of being finalised to enable treatment of the seed and direct seeding to occur as soon as possible to take advantage of the high moisture levels in the wake of recent rains.
This project is important because it connects previous conservation and planting work along the Stokes Inlet Catchment, providing habitat for wildlife and protecting waterways and ultimately the Stokes Inlet itself.
Business After Hours:
On 16 March, ERF and South Coast NRM hosted the Esperance Chamber of Commerce and Industry's Business After Hours event. The gathering gave ERF members and staff and South Coast NRM colleagues, the chance to catch up with members of the local business community whilst enjoying fine food prepared by local producers, Yirri Grove and Yvette Manstead (thank you again to Anne and Yvette!) and refreshments including Lucky Bay Brewing beer.
Growers Market - Boots for Change
Buoyed by the receipt of a $1,300 State Government Road Safety Grant and the support of Road Safety Officer Tiffany Brown, ERF has been able to support the return of the popular Esperance Growers Market. As a result of the combined energies of market enthusiasts, Yvette Mansted, Anne O’Neill and Amy Vickers along with members of the ERF committee, the market has blossomed in its new setting at the Nulsen Primary School. Held fortnightly on Saturday mornings, from 9 to 11am, the markets held so far this year have been fun events, with wonderful fresh produce on sale and many hundreds of visitors.
 
April is a special month for many markets around Australia, including ours! Boots of any kind (gumboots, work boots, riding boots, tap boots, cowboy boots, fashion boots!) will feature at a special Esperance Growers Market Boots for Change Market Day on Saturday 30 April, 2016.
Boots have been chosen as the symbol to promote farmers’ markets and to celebrate our hard working farmers, food producers and their families. This market is part of the national 2016 Boots for Change, Support Farming Families awareness campaign, organised by the Australian Farmers’ Markets Association (AFMA) during April.
 
The campaign idea originated from the 2015 ABC Heywire Youth Innovation Summit and is aimed at highlighting the importance of food producers and an awareness of farmers’ markets. It is hoped that this awareness will encourage vital community conversations about local food, supporting local farming families and encouraging regional youth to explore opportunities in agriculture.
 
“Market shoppers across Australia are being asked to wear boots, recycle old boots in novel ways, participate in best boot parades, boot photo competitions, boot‐scooting and many other fun activities to draw attention to farming and local food production, as well as youth programs in these rural communities,” explained Jane Adams, spokesperson for the Australian Farmers’ Markets Association.
 
The project gained the support of Australian company, Blundstone, who came aboard as Platinum sponsors of an event which focuses on the people who purchase their product: boots!
 
“Blunnies have been on the land alongside farmers through thick and thin – the good times and the bad. Since 1870, our boots have been an institution in Australian farming. The idea of supporting our farmers by putting on a pair of boots and stepping into their shoes is one that we’re sure willresonate with everyone who’s interested in the ‘paddock to plate’ philosophy where localproduction is appreciated and supported – as well as inspiring others to get on board. It’s the way of the future and we’re happy to be a part of it.”
 
Planned activities at the Esperance Growers Market include a best decorated boot competition, a boot throwing competition and a boot planter workshop.
 
“We’re asking shoppers–and stallholders–to put their best boots forward. It is amazing how this idea resonates; people are very passionate about supporting and promoting local food producing,” said Amy Kennaugh Vickers, Esperance Growers’ Market Boots for Change coordinator.
 
This special market day will be held on 30 April 2016, from 9am to 12 noon at Nulsen Primary School. The Esperance Regional Forum supported Esperance Growers Markets run fortnightly, and the normal hours are from 9am to 11am and are held at the Nulsen Primary School.
Copyright © 2016 Esperance Regional Forum (Inc), All rights reserved.

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ERF Esperance · PO Box 1153 · Esperance, WA 6450 · Australia

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