Shearers try out at Murrayfield Station
- Published on Wednesday, April 29, 2015
MEGT is pleased to have eight of our young Indigenous shearers take part in the Inaugural training program at Murrayfield Station in Tasmania and Merriman Station in NSW.
The Indigenous Land Corporation (ILC), provides agricultural training and employment for young indigenous people. Funding for the program is based on the commercial viability of the ILC stations, meaning that the wool taken off the sheep is reinvested in the training of future generations of shearers.
Bruce Michael, manager at Murrayfield station, says the skills the trainees learn in the shearing sheds will lead to a more productive lifestyle in the future.”The shearing industry is where you will learn life-skills and that’s what these kids will do.”
“Not only do they get a job being employed in the wool industry, but actually they learn life skills like getting up in the morning, making sure they obey all the rules that go with the shearing team”.
Merriman Station is located in Western NSW, about 30 kilometres from Brewarrina. MEGT currently has 15 young Indigenous men and women there undertaking a three month Shearing School.
The Bateman Shearing Team at Merriman is an Indigenous Shearing Family with three generations of shearers and wool handlers in the Industry. Trainers Ian and Lawrie provide expert shearing education, whilst Ian’s wife ‘Tup’ is an International Wool Handling Judge who shares her knowledge with the students.
Lawrie is a former Australian Record Holder in the Quick Shears category.
Thomas Nygy, 15, is one of MEGT’s trainees from Merriman Station and plans on using the training by the ILC and Primary Industries Tasmania to venture across the country with his swag and clippers.
“It’s just to get away from the place and that and just co me working, earn a bit of money.”
MEGT’s Indigenous Apprenticeship & Traineeship Network, in partnership with the Indigenous Land Corporation, has now provided training and employment opportunities in the Wool Industry for 54 young Indigenous men and women over the past 2 years, with 39 having successfully completed Shearing School and Certificate II in Agriculture.