Staffordshire County Federation of Young Farmers Clubs (SCFYFC) have taken full advantage of the very dry and sunny April weather, by covering over 1300 miles across the beautiful countryside in the county with YFC members from many of the active clubs, aged 10 – 26 years. The campaign, which was launched by the National Federation of Young Farmers Clubs (NFYFC), “Give it Some YFC Welly Relay” has helped to raise over £1000 to help to continue to deliver the much-needed service to young people in the rural communities across Staffordshire.
The County Federations’ funding was affected during the last membership year following the cancellation of all its spring and summer fundraising events. Despite continuing to deliver services to members in a virtual manner, including a two Virtual Rally’s and a Virtual County Show, the impact of the pandemic has been greatly felt, with only 33% of members re-joined for the current membership year. With face to face events and activities still on hold this fundraising effort has been very important to bring members together.
Staffordshire YFC took on the challenge and planned to cover 500 miles from 1st – 30th April, a target which they smashed in the first week. The total miles covered was 1318 and clubs who covered 35 miles or more will benefit from this fundraising campaign. Club Chairlady, Amy Boothby said “Completing the #GiveItSomeYFCWelly challenge has been a great opportunity for the members, clubs and supporters of Staffordshire YFC to join forces to raise some much-needed funds for Staffordshire YFC and its active clubs. It has also doubled up as a chance for members to meet and interact with one another in an outdoor environment, something which we haven’t experienced for many months. Having completed 1318 miles between us all, I’m incredibly proud to be the County Chairlady of Staffordshire YFC in such unprecedented times. I know we will come back from covid stronger than we were before, and I look forward to continuing to lead the federation during this time. I personally have really enjoyed being out and about in the beautifully Staffordshire countryside, something which I didn’t fully appreciate before partaking in this challenge.”
The members in Staffordshire covered the miles by walking, biking, horse riding and one member, Henry Walker of Ashley YFC, even took to the water and clocked up nautical miles on his sailing boat. Local beauty spots including Dimmingsdale near Alton, the canal at Weston and Marshes Hill in Brown Edge provided some great viewpoints, frosty mornings, perfect sunsets and sunny daytime strolls. One of the Federation’s Vice Presidents, Claire Palmer even took a stroll around the County Showground to map out a “Y F C” outside the YFC County Office.
Staffordshire YFC has been faced with a situation that has not happened since the Foot & Mouth outbreak in 2001 when clubs were again unable to meet face to face. The federation recovered from this period and are determined to do the same again following Covid 19. Each affiliated club in Staffordshire YFC, (Abbotsholme, Ashley, Chase, Cheadle, Eccleshall, Leek, Lichfield, Stone, Uttoxeter and Waterhouses) usually meet on a weekly basis to bring their members together to take part in competitions, talks, fundraising events, learn new skills and training, mental wellbeing sessions, socials and so much more. Despite members enthusiasm during the pandemic, Clubs and the County have faced great challenges but are now looking towards a more active summer programme of face-to-face activities including a Rounders Match evening, Scavenger Hunt and planning activities and competitions at the rescheduled Staffordshire County Show due to be held at the end of August.
Staffordshire YFC Clubs and County will continue to provide the vital youthwork services which enable young people living in rural communities to have somewhere to go, learn new skills and make like-minded friends for life in current times and for future generations. Anyone interested in supporting Staffordshire YFC and their Give it some YFC Welly campaign can visit the JustGiving page as there is still time left to donate. www.justgiving.com/fundraising/staffordshire-yfc