A blog from the woman herself
Posted June 26, 2013
Cathy's first hand thoughts on her visit to Mansfield:
A crisp sunny frosty morning in Mansfield, first thing to enjoy is a cup of coffee from Cloud 9 coffee makers that have travelled from Beechworth to be at the Mansfield Farmers Market. Caper Tapenade on fresh crisp bread followed by some triple cream cheese sets the tone for a very happy and constructive morning in Mansfield.
Local people and tourists are concerned about mobile phone access, particularly during an emergency such as fires when there is no mobile coverage. The Mansfield Shire has set up a subcommittee to see what is possible to improve telecommunication service in the area. Right across the electorate this issue of telecommunications infrastructure - access to mobile phone coverage and particularly the fear of not having access during fire and floods is a priority.
Stall holders are interested in my options on food policy: the recent problems SPC has focused attention on local food production. I reassured them that this was an issue dear to my heart; agriculture production, marketing Australian produce and developing North EastE Victoria as a centre for food and wine are high on my priorities.
One of the highlight of the market was reconnecting with Alli Walker and Eileen Conway who had been participants at the Connecting Rural Business Women Seminar CRBW (click here to view their website).
It was good to talk about the role of small business and strategies for growing small business in Indi. Alli is President of the Mansfield District Business Association and Eileen is a strategic planner. Both these women were sponsored by Mansfield Council to come to the CRBW. It was very useful for them and that they learnt lots of skills, made excellent connections and look forward to coming back next year.
I left the market with a selection of delicious food; cream cheese, tapenade and walnuts. This will be the basis for afternoon tea on Sunday when we will be hosting our first briefing for volunteers.
Other briefings to take place over the next 10 days – for further details, see our calendar here.