Lantra's industry champions with speakers at Parliamentary reception to celebrate achievements of rural youth

The key contribution made by young people to Scotland’s rural economy and communities was highlighted last night (Wednesday 3rd October, 6pm-8pm) at a reception in the Scottish Parliament.

Sponsored by Tavish Scott MSP, the event celebrated the work that Lantra’s Industry Champions are doing to inspire the next generation of learners in the land-based, aquaculture and environmental conservation sector, and to highlight opportunities and challenges which have been identified by the Rural Youth Project.

Kevin Patrick, Director of Lantra Scotland said “2018 was designated the Year of Young People by the Scottish Government, so we’re delighted to highlight with our partners some of the great work that’s taking place across rural Scotland by and for young people”.

“We were proud to be joined at the Parliamentary reception by a number of our Industry Champions, including a great ambassador for rural careers, Mary Bowman. Like most of our Industry Champions, Mary was a finalist in our Land-based and Aquaculture Learner of the Year Awards and has taken on this new role to help inspire the next generation of learners and to support skills development in our sector”. 

Tavish Scott MSP added, “I’m delighted to sponsor this event celebrating the inspirational work of the young Industry Champions, they are all fantastic role models and advocates for land-based careers. It is important to encourage young people to become interested in these careers. This initiative, along with the Rural Youth Project, is a great way of doing that.”

The Rural Youth Project is being managed by Jane Craigie Marketing in partnership with other organisations to research and better understand rural young people, and comprises a survey, a series of in-depth video logs, and a Rural Youth Ideas Festival.

MD Jane Craigie explained: “Rural young people are fundamental to the vibrancy, energy and economic outlook of rural places so we carried out a wide-ranging survey to better understand what they see as challenges and opportunities, as well as how optimistic they are about the future.”

The Parliamentary reception highlighted the importance of young people to the rural economy and the future of rural communities, giving them a platform to share their views with policy-makers. The organisations involved also discussed what they would do next to support young people in building their lives, skills and businesses over the coming years.

Speakers at the event were: Tavish Scott MSP; Mairi Gougeon MSP, Minister for Rural Affairs and the Natural Environment; Lantra Industry Champion Mary Bowman; Lantra Scotland Director Kevin Patrick; vlogger Claire Taylor from the Scottish Farmer, and Jane Craigie of the Rural Youth Project.

Click the image below to see our photos from the night.

2018 Parliamentary reception to celebrate achievements of young people