Building Capacity Project
Felicity Harrop – Project Leader
North Central Catchment Management Authority
As farmers better understand the importance of sustainable soil management for their productivity and profitability, they need advice, technical assistance and expertise from their local grower groups.
This project is co-funded by the Australian Government through the Building Landcare Community and Capacity component of the Smart Farms Program. It will deliver increased soil technical capacity and capability in grower groups, Landcare groups and NRM organisations, both within and outside of the Soil CRC.
The project is building technical capacity of these groups to deliver soil health information to farmers. It is leveraging the significant skills, expertise and collaborative partnerships within the Soil CRC to build the soil health technical capacity of these groups.
Three communities of practice (CoPs) have been established across Australia, each one made up of 10 participants from groups in areas of common interest. The three CoPs cover the West – WA; South – SA, Vic, Tas and Southern NSW and North – Northern NSW and Qld.
Of the 30 groups that are represented, 15 are farmer groups and 15 are NRM organisations. Nineteen of the participants are from groups outside of the Soil CRC. They have analysed the existing soil science knowledge, skills and confidence of the participants and where they currently source knowledge on soil science practice and trends.
Each of the three CoPs are developing a capacity building plan that best addresses the gaps and needs of the individuals within each CoP and the CoP as a whole. These plans will reflect the existing knowledge bases of individual participants, the needs and priorities of the groups for whom they work, the delivery needs of the projects that they are responsible for (i.e. Smart Farms projects), and the soil and farming systems issues of the region.
In the medium term, these three communities of practice will have positioned themselves as knowledge hubs driving adoption of sustainable, productive soil stewardship at the farm level.
North West Local Land Services
Northern Slopes Landcare Association
North Coast Local Land Services
Central West Local Land Services
Northern Grower Alliance
Burnett Catchment Care Association
Central Highlands Regional Resources Use Planning Cooperative (CHRRUP)
Hunter Local Land Services
Burdekin Productivity Services
Herbert Cane Productivity Services
South West Catchments Council
WA Hemp Growers’ Co-op Ltd (HempGro)
South Coast NRM
Northern Agricultural Catchments Council NRM
Morawa Farm Improvement Group
The Gillamii Centre
West Midlands Group
Upper Hopkins Land Management Group
Natural Resources SA Murray-Darling Basin
Eyre Peninsula NRM
Northern & Yorke NRM
Holbrook Landcare Network
Central West Farming Systems
Southern Farming Systems
Birchip Cropping Group