Emma-Jane Lovell was a shy child of eight when she became involved in the country show circuit, and today she understands the benefits it provided for her self esteem and socialisation.
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This Dubbo Show, she will be a steward for the Young Farmers Challenge, which will have young farm-types sign-up to compete in activities of the likes of swag-rolling and fencing.
The Terramungamine resident said it was important to get juniors involved in the Dubbo Show, which is organised yearly by the Dubbo Show Society, to ensure longevity of the group's activities.
"We've got to have the young generation there. It's a good thing to get involved in, to promote the agricultural industry," Ms Lovell told the Daily Liberal.
The Lovell family owns a small Shorthorn farm in Terramungamine, and Ms Lovell's mum, Kelly Lovell, is chief steward of the cattle section at the Dubbo Show.
Ms Lovell said the show society was "big" for her family.
"I've been showing cattle since I was eight. I showed cattle for years for various different studs, then I got my own Shorthorn stud. I also got involved with the sheep, and worked in the [show society] office for three years," she said.
The Young Farmers Challenge consists of two sections - one for juniors aged 14 to 17, and one for young people aged 18 to 35. Entrants compete in teams of three, and the teams must be a mix of males and females.
The aim of the competition is to complete all challenges in the safest and fastest manner.
The competition involves a number of rural-based challenges including fire fighting, animal handling, carting hay, fencing, swag rolling, and first aid and work health and safety tasks.
Ms Lovell said some challenges in past competitions had been wrapping a snake bite, and putting together pipes and fittings.
She said many of the competitors were agricultural students and "kids off farms".
"A lot of the school kids who come to the show for the sheep and cattle sections normally get a team together and get involved," Ms Lovell said.
She said: "I think it's a good opportunity for the kids to get involved and have a bit of fun and maybe even learn a new skill."
Ms Lovell said the Dubbo Show Society welcomes volunteers and "there's always potential" for more young people to get involved.
She made friends and contacts in the industry through her own involvement over the years.
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"For me, as a kid growing up in the show circuit, I was quite a quiet child - I didn't talk to people, so it sort of built my confidence getting in front of a crowd and judging cattle and sheep and giving your opinion on that," Ms Lovell said.
"Now, it's taken away that shyness."
She said becoming steward for the Young Farmers Challenge was "a good experience".
"I've always been involved in youth stuff, whether it's cattle or sheep. It's another opportunity to give back to the show society and give opportunities to the young people."
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