News

Additional funding increases training support for women in agriculture

Published: 08 Mar 2021 00:01

Access to scheme allows women in crofting and agriculture to develop their skills. 

Women living or working in Scottish agriculture will benefit from £115,000 of extra funding for a wide range of practical training courses including tractor and trailer driving. 

The financial package, announced by Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing on International Women’s Day, follows the recent announcement of a parallel fund for Women in the Rural Economy. It offers training in other rural sectors such as aquaculture, forestry, horticulture and wildlife management. 

The latest six figure package has been earmarked to develop the talents and upskill women in farming and crofting businesses as part of the Women in Agriculture Practical Training Fund.

Training courses already identified include certification in tractor and trailer driving, sheepdog training and education in the use of antibiotics in livestock.  Applications have also come from women seeking to innovate and diversify their agricultural business into new areas, such as livestock photography.  

Mr Ewing said: “It’s fitting the new funding of £115,000 is announced on International Women’s Day as we seek to empower women living and working in Scottish agriculture with increased business skills, knowledge and confidence.

“These training funds have already proved enormously popular and we look forward to investing still further in future female successes. In supporting women in this way, we are increasing equality of opportunity and gender balance in Scottish agriculture and creating a more resilient agricultural industry. 

“The benefits to the rural economy and way of life for women living and working in agriculture will be significant in terms of accessing increased training funding.”

Both funds are administered by Lantra Scotland and are open for applications now. 

Background

The latest investment is in addition to an initial £100,000 funding package committed to the Women In Agriculture Practical Training Fund in December 2020. Applications are open to any woman resident in Scotland who is  either living, working or studying in agriculture, full-time or part-time, or who is keen to start work in this area; and who can demonstrate how the training course will support their business or employment options.

Courses eligible for funding can include: business skills; environmental and sustainability; health and safety; plants and animals; vehicles, machinery and equipment. For guidance on eligibility, what you can apply for, or any part of the funding application process, contact scotland@lantra.co.uk.

The Scottish Government also committed £100,000 last month (February 2021) to the Women In The Rural Economy Training Fund; a parallel scheme for accessing training in other rural sectors, such as aquaculture, conservation, fisheries, forestry, horticulture, land-based engineering and wildlife management, amongst others.