The Competition is a Stepping StoneWednesday, Nov 5, 2003
Five years ago Southlander Robert Kempthorne entered first District Final of the Young Farmer Contest blissfully unaware of the life changing decision he had just made. He did not even imagine the opportunities that would come along, the places he would go, and the friends he would make. He simply entered to have a go.
Winning the national title has been a truly amazing experience and the culmination of a lot of hard work. It has proved to me that goals and dreams are truly possible if you want them and are willing to make sacrifice says Mr Kempthorne. It took me five years of competing to win the top prize and the skills, friends and memories I’ve gained along the way are invaluable; not to mention the great prizes.
Half a decade on I found himself receiving the winners Cloak of Knowledge and the $85,000 winners prize package at Hastings last July. I won the coveted champions title of what is now known as The National Bank Young Farmer of the Year.
Robert describes the Contest as an awesome and a truly amazing event and is quick to encourage everyone to have a go and stretch themselves.
Seeing young people pushed slightly outside their comfort zones is great as you watch sheep farmers dealing with milk plants and herd records or dairy farmers trying to master the elusive ram harness or shearing handpiece No matter the outcome, everyone is better for it and new skills are learnt for use both on and off the farm, so it’s got to be worth a go.
It all started for Robert at that district level where he and nearly four hundred Young Farmers come together in thirty District Finals throughout New Zealand and are put through their paces on all aspects of rural life.
We need enthusiastic, passionate young men and women in agriculture and this competition is a stepping stone to help these young people achieve the skills and confidence they need for their farming careers.
Entry Forms are now available for District Finals of The National Bank Young Farmer Contest from www.youngfarmercontest.co.nz. or your local National Bank Rural Manager.