When talking to my friends during the 2013 federal election campaign the observation I made…
The female leaders of tomorrow have officially touched down in the nation’s capital to rub shoulders with Australia’s leading politicians and top business influencers until 6 December.
The three-day ‘Power Trip’ is being taken by 14 rural and remote teenage innovators who are hand-picked to experience the fourth annual Canberra to Country ‘Power Trip’. While in town, the young visionaries will enjoy a Powerful Women’s Breakfast at the Hyatt Hotel and take part in a VIP Parliament House lunch hosted by the likes of Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, Member for Canberra Gai Brodtmann and, the first-ever female Chair of the National Farmers’ Federation, Fiona Simson.
Country to Canberra is a nationwide not-for-profit organisation aimed at empowering young rural women to reach their leadership potential. The award-winning organisation builds leadership skills, encourages self-belief, and connects young rural women with role models and mentors. The strategic priorities of the organisation include empowering future leaders, actively working to achieve gender equality and, to encourage more young, rural women to pursue careers in local, state and federal politics.
Country to Canberra CEO Hannah Wandel says it’s all about empowering young women with the skills and opportunities to help them overcome gender and geographical barriers to success.
“Distance, time and funding barriers make accessing education and career opportunities tough for rural and remote students. We need to ensure no matter where you’re from, what gender you are, or what your background is, we’re giving you the tools to succeed,” explains Hannah. “We still have a severe gender imbalance in our political leadership, and just 5.5 percent of CEOs in our top ASX 200 companies are women. We need to generate a conversation about gender equality and be proactive about solutions.”
Prior to arriving in Canberra, 17-year-old Eliza Nelligan from Port Lincoln in far-west South Australia expressed how the much-anticipated trip would be beneficial for her.
“It’ll be great to get advice from inspiring leaders, and then apply these principles back in my local community. It’s really a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” says Eliza.
Excitement levels are still soaring high as the girls experience what Country to Canberra has planned for them on their second last day in the nation’s capital. The wait for this Power Trip has been, for some of the girls, a very long one indeed and finally they are able to learn and enjoy all Canberra has to offer.