Pathways to Rural Employment

assessors l2 agri-1 (dragged)

 

Pathways to Rural Employment

 

The recent mini Agri advice event held at the Drummond Hotel Ballykelly on 19th October proved a great success. There were advice tables present from various companies and organisations involved in the rural sector in Northern Ireland, including representation from the NI Awarding bodies OCN (NI) and LANTRA on how rural & land-based qualifications could assist those wishing to work in the countryside. A full 2-hour group of charismatic speakers kept the audience enthralled on topics ranging from Health & safety in farming right through to how to automate a milking parlour in China and build a hospital in Dubai using robot-controlled methods.

 

If you were not there – you missed out on hearing how really interesting jobs, both part-time & full-time, can be found be found in a rural community – if you know where to go looking! On our own doorstop in Ballykelly – Owner & Producer Jo Gilbert of the new Shackleton Studios, opened the event by describing how a film studio in a location increases the local “spend” exponentially over a very short period. Yes, jobs for extras are temporary, but it still feeds into Tourism and local companies benefit, especially if the film is a success – look at Game of Thrones.

 

Jude McCann, Chief Executive of Rural Support highlighted the services offered by the charity which was setup after the foot and mouth crisis in 2002 and spoke on how rural services and farmers plan to contribute to Health & Social services within the next few years in terms of becoming possible providers to Health & Service local provision. Samantha Coster and Stephen Laverty from Citizens Advice, gave us an overview of the Pension Wise project in Northern Ireland – another one to watch $ as changes come into how we might be allowed to decide how we spend our own money!

 

You could have heard a pin drop when William Sayers from D&M Farm Services showed the Youtube video he has produced on his farm accident resulting on the loss of his arm when he was 12 years old in a PTO accident outside his own back door.

 

How did we get onto an automated milking parlour in China and robots building hospitals out of cubes? The owner of Sphere Global, Sean McNichol, closed the event on a jaw-dropping description of his manufacturing business in Campsie Industrial Estate which now exports to 16 destinations across the world for companies wanting automation to be a major factor in their processes. Sean was firm in his knowledge that automation was the way of the future to bring work into the area and it created jobs, not replacing them. Sean is a Limavady man, “born & bred”, who saw the future and went for it a few years ago – a true entrepreneur.

 

Proving that Ballykelly, the Roe Valley and the Northwest in general is still a hub of activity and can only grow in prosperity. “Watch this space” – say the staff of Ceres Europe (NI) Ltd, from Ballykelly.

assessors l2 agri-1 (dragged)


About Dale McNerlin