The appointment of local grazier Virginia Kelleher as Gympie & District Landcare’s new Business Manager brings the long established and active organisation back to its beginnings almost 33 years ago. Established in 1988 by a committed group of forward-thinking farmers, Gympie Landcare started working with the farming community to increase knowledge and skills in sustainable agricultural practices. Areas of focus were halting declining soil productivity, sustainable & profitable farming practices, establishment of land rehabilitation demonstration sites and much more.
33 years on, and the mission to bring the farming and wider community to more sustainable, and indeed regenerative methods of farming (and living) continues. “Given the multiple challenges facing us today, including a changing climate and natural resources being depleted by a consumption-driven economy, it is more important than ever that we look to our farmers to be part of the solution”, said Maree Gillott, President of Gympie & District Landcare. “That’s one reason we’re so happy to have Virginia on board. She is ‘walking the talk’ on her own properties”. After 10 years as a marketing executive in the fast lane on the Gold Coast, and 7 years working in farm design and civil construction in a successful family business, the call of the land could no longer be ignored.
Virginia and her family purchased a grazing property at Ban Ban Springs in the North Burnett, and in 2010, another at Glastonbury where they moved to expand their beef operations.
She observes “After enduring more regular dry seasons, lower than average rainfall, two horrific droughts and then floods, I realised that, by adopting regenerative agricultural practices, the impact these conditions have had on our land and our animals can be significantly reduced. We have proven this on our country. “
Virginia continues: ”There is a wealth of information and resources to tap into and I am excited to be a part of endorsing positive change in this space. It is through important organisations such as our local Landcare offices that we can offer our whole community the opportunity to become involved, particularly our future generation. Whether someone has land, a backyard, or simply wants to join a team of people to contribute to conserve and grow our precious habitat, ecosystems, wildlife, and waterways, we can all come together, to work together to make a difference! “