The Gardiner Dairy Foundation is pleased to announce that applications are now open for the 2017 Victorian Regional Community Leadership Program (VRCLP) scholarships. The Gardiner Dairy Foundation fully funds 10 scholarships annually which are awarded to emerging leaders in regional dairy communities who are actively seeking out learning and development opportunities to progress their career and communities.

Now in its 12th year, the scholarship program is a joint initiative between the Gardiner Dairy Foundation and the VRCLP and operate across the key dairying regions of Victoria to provide leaders with a unique opportunity to gain new skills and build their mentoring expertise.

“The programs offer a unique opportunity to assist leaders in dairy communities with quality leadership training and skill development. The scholarship programs have been in operation since 2004 and have provided 60 successful scholars with critical funding to help advance their careers and dairy communities in Victoria,” said Mary Harney, Chief Executive of the Gardiner Dairy Foundation.

Katrina Baddeley, Chief Executive Officer of the Victorian Regional Community Leadership Program (VRCLP) is excited to see so many regions benefit from the programs and is encouraging candidates in these regions to take up this valuable opportunity.

“It is integral to support the communities in which dairy farms operate and particularly to enhance the skills of community members. The leadership programs equip these applicants with important engagement and facilitation skills whilst preparing them to become inspirational and influential leaders of their communities,” said Ms Baddeley.

Lauren Finger, Veterinarian, dairy farmer and mother was part of the 2014 Gippsland Community Leadership Scholarship Program (GCLP) and credits the program with advancing her networking skills.

“The GCLP is a fantastic program that the Gardiner Dairy Foundation funds. It certainly made me more focused and aware of the community around me and the need to make an effort to maintain connections. With ‘digital everything’ we are at a risk of losing our regional communities… this scholarship has reinforced my commitment to my own community network” said Ms Finger.

Applications for the 2017 Victorian Regional Community Leadership Program will close on 31 October 2016, with the exception of the Alpine Valleys Community Leadership Program which will open in April 2017 and close early June 2017.

For further information about the Community Leadership Programs or to download an application form, visit the respective regional leadership program websites:

Leadership Great South Coast:

Loddon Murray Community Leadership Program:

Fairley Leadership (Goulburn Murray):

Gippsland Community Leadership Program:

Alpine Valleys Community Leadership Program: