Job seekers get back on the horse
KIDS who have left school and may be struggling to get a job are gaining valuable skills and confidence thanks to Nicole Lincoln.
When she's not busy running her horse stud, Ms Lincoln facilitates a program which sees young people in the region gain work experience on J-Bell Farm in Minden.
"We started the program in August and this year has been more of a trial. We hope to ramp it up next year,” Ms Lincoln said.
"We have 37 horses out here at the moment so kids learn everything from cleaning to first aid to riding.
"A few kids want to learn more about the farm and a few have even wanted to pursue a career in horses which is exciting.”
J-Bell farm breeds, trains and sells top quality performance horses while also operating as a training facility which means those who participate in the program can learn a diverse range of skills within the equine industry.
"Get Set For Work options were limited in this area so we wanted something for kids to be able to get involved in,” Ms Lincoln said.
"In Lowood there's not a lot of things to kids to do so we hope to give kids more of an opportunity in the area.
"The kids are very much a part of the family when they come out here.
"We have Connor who comes out every day. When he first came here he'd never been on a horse and now he's keen to be a show jumping rider.”
Ms Lincoln said the equine industry was difficult to get into in Australia.
"We hope this program helps grow support for the industry as a whole,” she said.
"We have been talking to youth workers around the place about how to expand.
"Hopefully you'll be bigger and better things happening in Minden next year.”