Ernest Hardes Memorial
In honour of our longest serving and treasured president, Ernest Hardes, these two Scholarships offer Hunter Valley based tertiary students access to on the farm mentoring and short courses in sustainable growing.
The exciting future of small-scale sustainable food production in the Hunter Valley just got better with the announcement of the winners of the Ernest Hardes Memorial Scholarships.
The scholarships, awarded by Hunter Organic Growers Society and Slow Food Hunter Valley, offer a way of continuing Ern's passion to share knowledge of organic growing, particularly with younger people.
Freya Nolin and Tim Kelliher took out the scholarships from an impressive field of eight young people who are currently studying and working in local agricultural food production.
Freya and Tim each take home the gift of $2,000 of education in cutting edge sustainable food production.
All applicants were incredibly impressive, and a number are already ankle deep in the good soils of the Hunter Valley, producing beautiful food for us to enjoy. All expressed a vision of a food system that nourishes the earth and values biodiversity, with agroforestry and regenerative agriculture common passions.
“It was such a life affirming process, meeting these young people with such clear and strong visions for the future of good, clean and fair food production in the Hunter,” said Anne Kelly, leader of Slow Food Hunter Valley and member of the scholarship selection panel.
We will all be hearing more from this crop of young growers. Food security in the Hunter, which promises to be a huge issue in the future, is in their hands.
Freya Nolin is majoring in Regenerative Agriculture in her studies at Southern Cross University and has experience in permaculture and beekeeping. She is looking forward to gaining some more hands-on practical experience that will help her in her future endeavours. She is particularly interested in making organic, regenerative farming practices accessible to new and existing farmers.
Tim Kelliher is studying Horticulture at Ryde TAFE. He is passionate about engaging and educating local communities on growing healthy food at home while treating the land with the care it deserves. Ern Hardes passion for "growing new gardeners" really resonated with him, and he looks forward to the knowledge, insight and connections to people that the scholarship offers.
Upskill with $2000 worth of training including organic farming, permaculture and bee keeping courses.
On the Farm
Hands on learning with two days experience with Little Hill Farm and a private tour of Limestone Permacuture.
The scholarships are brought to you by
Hunter Organic Growers Society
Slow Food Hunter Valley
with the generous support of
Purple Pear Farm
Little Hill Farm
YOUR LEARNING EXPERIENCE
Each of the two scholarships on offer include:
$2000 contribution towards course fees
$1600 in courses with Purple Pear Farm (with the option of additional $400 from below for a Permaculture Design Certificate).
$400.00 in courses from your choice of first class sustainable educators:
Purple Pear Farm (by applying the additional $400.00 to this farm it will allow the scholar to choose to do a Permaculture Design Certificate worth $2,000.00)
Practical "on the farm" mentoring experiences
Brett Cooper - Limestone Permaculture:
A private 2 hour tour of his one acre highly productive farm with one of the Hunter's most inspiring Permaculture ambassadors. This tour will be tailored to focus on your particular interests.
Simon Carroll - Little Hill Farm:
2 days on the farm experience in Mount Vincent. Join this award winning, innovative small family free range poultry operation and gain valuable first hand experience!
(Note: the two students will attend the above mentoring experiences together on the same date)
PLUS both Scholarships include 2 year memberships to...
We are gardeners, farmers, and first time producers of our own backyard fodder, who meet monthly to learn about living and growing sustainably in the Hunter Valley and surrounds. All members receive free entry to field days, one free workshop per year, our monthly newsletter and that good feeling that you're a part of positive change.
Slow Food Hunter Valley is a group of volunteers who offer their time to support and run projects that raise awareness of the importance of eating seasonal and local produce, encourage food diversity, help distribute (and redistribute) food on a more equitable basis, keep our food clean and reduce food waste. Most of all, Slow Food Hunter Valley seeks to protect taste, flavour and biodiversity through local projects, campaigns, community engagement and educational programs.
An outstanding biodynamic farm west of Maitland run by a passionate team, Mark Brown and Kate Beveridge. They offer learning opportunities based on 20+ years of experience in teaching, farming, sustainability, permaculture, biodynamics and community building. At Purple Pear Farm, life revolves around food – growing, selling, preparing, preserving and eating it.
First generation farmers who have a passion for clean ethical produce. Their products feature in the best restaurants and home kitchens in the Hunter and are developing a reputation for outstanding quality and flavour. Their pasture raised chicken has been awarded state winner in the 2017 Delicious Awards.
Limestone Permaculture Farm is a highly productive one acre demonstration property, designed with & operated on Permaculture Principles and located in the beautiful Karuah Valley, NSW. Limestone Farm showcases practical and transitioning examples of Permaculture Principles integrated into our Food Growing, Farm Management and Life Systems
Urban Hum is a small artisan beekeeping enterprise located in Newcastle, NSW. As passionate beekeepers they are committed to the health and wellbeing of their honeybees. The bees come first. This is reflected in their management practices and ethical honey production. Working alongside their bees, they produce delicious urban honey in the heart of the city. Each jar is unique to the suburb it’s made in, with small batch production and single hive origin. So you get to taste honey from one hive at a time, one suburb at a time. They run regular very popular bee keeping workshops.
Applications are currently closed
WHO CAN APPLY
• Aged 18 to 30 years
• Currently undertaking studies at a registered training organisation in the area of Horticulture, Agriculture or a related field.
• Currently residing in the Hunter Region (local government areas of Lake Macquarie, Newcastle, Cessnock, Maitland, Port Stephens, Singleton, Muswellbrook, Upper Hunter, Dungog.)
• Interested in learning more about organic growing
• Currently facing barriers that may impact on your ability to finance further learning (this adversity will be kept confidential).
Ernest ‘Ern’ Hardes was a long term founding member of Hunter Organic Growers Society. Sadly he passed away in 2017.
Ern was so knowledgeable and always willing to help solve a gardening problem or to share some growing advice. His passion to ‘grow new gardeners’ is being recognised with the introduction of this scholarship in his name (and on the 40th birthday of Hunter Organic Growers Society).