New local Women’s Forum to launch this week
“I always believed that one woman’s success can only help another woman’s success” – Gloria Vanderbilt
This quote came to mind when I caught up with Mary Brell, Cheryl Pope and Amanda Spalding, along with Jerry Collis, these women are the masterminds behind the newly formed, Central West Women’s Forum, who are holding their first meeting this Saturday.
The group hopes to give a voice to women of the Central West who want to make a difference. Its diverse membership will provide and leverage, support, encouragement and develop opportunities for each other within its resources, as well as coordinating high powered external speakers and experiences.
Mary explained, “It was a group of us that got together thinking that we really needed to do something for women in Central West NSW. Particularly now, with issues including the drought and businesses.
“We certainly want it to be a powerful network group for women out here, not just Orange, we are talking Bathurst, Parkes, Dubbo and surrounds. Somebody might like to go into business, or someone might want to increase their leadership skills, we will have people in the group to encourage and support that.”
The guest speaker for the inaugural evening will be the Hon. Bronnie Taylor MLC, NSW Minister for Mental Health, Regional Youth and Women. The Minister will speak about her leadership journey and issues she has noticed in Rural NSW, as well as answer any questions the forum may have.
“It’s not a ‘women only’ group, men are certainly invited to come along. We want to work with and alongside men to make the best of any organisation. We all come with different skills, let’s bring our skills together and make the organisation the best it can possibly be. I think women have certainly struggled their way through a lot of issues and what we are trying to do is support them. Let’s make them stronger out here in the west,” said Mary.
“There are a lot of amazing women out here with businesses doing things”
Cheryl added, “It’s about collecting voices and taking that forward. Whether it’s true or not, there is an absolute perception that rural and regional women aren’t able to be heard, it’s not about pushing any agendas, it’s about providing a forum for thoughts, ideas and a bit of imagination, and therefore how we can go forward and support each other.”
“There are a lot of amazing women out here with businesses doing things, in a way it’s about taking away the fear and having women present in such a way, they don’t threaten others.”
Amanda continued, “One of the things we say is it’s about encouraging excellence in leadership, I guess for me I think it’s important for people to look at Mary, Cheryl or myself and say, that’s leadership. Let’s encourage women to have confidence, leadership comes in all shapes and sizes and I think it’s interesting to hear women talk about their own leadership journey, that way you are exposing women to these different ideas and actions.”
The hope is for the Women’s forum to meet quarterly, this first event will be an excellent opportunity to network and shape the future of the Central West Women’s Forum. It will be held on Saturday 15th June at Kate Jones Café @ One Nineteen (119, Moulder Street, Orange) from 6pm – 8:30pm. Canapes will be served, and a bar will be available. Bookings close for the event on Friday 14th at 10am.
For more information or to book your spot https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=506084&or alternatively callMary on 0417 215 986.