DRYLAND RESEARCH TRIP – BUS TOUR
- Gippsland Primary Health Network and the Australian Government’s One Good Community Wellbeing Grants Program
- Week long bus tour to 10 farms across Victoria
Research QuestionThis project is “All about the Conversation” and is a joint initiative between Gippsland Agricultural Group, Landcare – Top Soils Project, Regional Agricultural Facilitator Program and Southern Farming Systems. The project aims to support a network of farmers for farmers. Get likeminded people with similar interests together and take them off the farm to have a 5-day break create an environment that is relaxed, comfortable and safe. Allow time for the shoulder-to-shoulder conversations, while sitting on a bus or plane, sharing meals or walking in a paddock, not just discussing the farm, but also mental health and support options available.
Research Information & Objectives
In February 2021, 31 farmers from Gippsland participated in a week long bus tour to meet with 16 other farmers from across Victoria. Enterprises visited included heifer development, business marketing, no till cropping, regenerative farming, soil acidity management and lime, high input agriculture, innovative machinery, corn production, intelligent irrigation, biological farming, cover crops, IT innovation in agriculture, precision lambing, feet lot management and closed loop feed production and robotic dairies.
In support of rural mental health and services provided, Dolly’s Dream, Trade Mutt, Black Dog Institute, Beyond Blue, Red Cross, Headspace, Lifeline Gippsland Farmer’s friend, Men’s Line and Royal Flying Doctor’s Service were discussed.
The project was funded by the Gippsland Primary Health Network and the Australian Government’s One Good Community Wellbeing Grants program to help address the long term impacts of drought and bushfires in the region by promoting healing and recovery.