Member Update: ASA Activity, 29 March 2019

The below update provides an update on recent activity of the ASA, as at March 2019.

• The ASA AGM will be held on Sunday, 14 April 2019 at the Sydney Showgrounds during the Royal Easter Show and will be immediately followed by a general members’ meeting.
• The 2019 ASA Budget was ratified by the Board at the February 2019 Board meeting, with three key initiatives taking focus for the coming period:
        - Rural Ambassador project: The project will see part-time administration support recruited with the aim of streamlining and expanding the Rural Ambassador program for optimum benefit to the ASA, the RA participants and potential sponsors.
        - National Next Generation: A new National Next Generation (NNG) is proposed and a small allocation of funds from the ASA’s budget has been allocated to support the establishment of this body. A resolution will be put forward at the upcoming AGM which would amend the constitution to allow an NNG membership and seat on the Board of the ASA.
        - ASA Inaugural Conference 2020, hosted by Queensland Ag Shows Next Generation: Planning is well underway for the conference, which will be held on the Gold Coast on 17-19 January 2020. The ASA budget allows for support funding for the conference in the form of a seed-fund allocation as well as an allocation to provide attendance bursaries.
       - The February 2019 Board meeting of the ASA was held in Canberra during the Canberra Royal Show. The Board would like to acknowledge the generosity of Michael Kennedy and Athol Chalmers, President and CEO respectively of RNCAS, in hosting the Board.

Sponsorship and Funding model

• Sponsorship and membership: At the recent Board meeting of the ASA, two documents outlining the proposed plan/way-forward for sponsorship and membership were submitted for review and agreement. Both proposed a financially cautious approach utilising existing resources for sales efforts. Both plans will be implemented and a focus will be placed on utilising existing contacts with potential sponsors rather than a scatter-gun approach.

• A submission for significant funding for the ASA was developed and submitted to the office of the Minister for Agriculture under the Landcare program. Despite several follow-ups, no feedback or determination has been provided, and no timeline for response has been indicated.

National Finals Competitions
• The NCWG will meet on Monday 15 April 2019 at the Royal Easter Show in Sydney, and again in September during the Perth Royal Show.
• The National Finals program has been released and is included at the end of this document.

Rural Ambassador Update
As previously noted, the Rural Ambassador project will be funded by ASA this year and is already underway. Work to date includes:
• The development of a framework for a more thorough and semi-formal mentoring program for the winner and runner-up each year.
• The drafting of a position description for the role of program coordinator.

The recruitment process will shortly commence and a suitable candidate will be sought on a part-time basis. Information about this recruitment will be communicated to the ASA contacts database via an eDM and on Facebook.

 Next Generation Update
The establishment of a National Next Generation body is progressing with several further meetings having taken place in recent months. As already noted, a vote to allow a change to the ASA Constitution, to accept the National Next Generation body as a member of the ASA, will be put forward at the ASA AGM in April 2019.

• The ASA Social Media presence continues to grow. Facebook –
▪ Started in 2nd half of 2018
▪ Audience of 815 as at March 2019
▪ Posting daily
▪ Average audience reach per post of 7000

Twitter –

▪ Started in 2nd half of 2018
▪ Audience of 180
▪ Tweeting daily
▪ Average Tweet impressions of 5000

• The March 2019 issue of The Ring was distributed in mid-March to 1076 contacts with an open rate of 39.9% and click-throughs of 7.5%.
• Work will shortly begin on securing of a PR professional to assist, in particular, with raising awareness of the ASA and its activities at the Perth Royal Show – the Young Judges National Championships and the Rural Ambassador national finals.

ASA Conference
• The ASA conference committee has met several times in recent months and progress is being made on the planning of the inaugural event.

• The conference will be hosted in January 2020 by Queensland Ag Shows Next Generation on the Gold Coast, QLD. The Mantra on View is the venue and preferable accommodation rates have been secured.
• Information will shortly be released to ASA member bodies regarding the conference, including the program overview, accommodation booking details, a save-the-date and information on opportunities to support the event.

ASA Member Resources
• Members are encouraged to submit resources as well as provide insight into the resources they would like to see uploaded. This should be done via
• A reciprocal membership agreement has been developed with IAFE in the USA which will allow for sharing of resources from the vast IAFE library to the ASA. ASA member representatives are invited to submit requests for the types of resources which would add value to their organisations and to their members. This can be done via

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