YDP workshop season is back!

ring craft 5
3 May 2018

As the YDP workshops are now back underway we’re going to be bringing you more of the views and opinions from our keen youngsters attending workshops throughout the UK. It’s always interesting to hear the participants’ thoughts on the workshops and, in line with the overall ethos of the YDP, this also gives the youngsters a chance to practice their writing skills and let our members hear their opinions!

This week we heard from two brothers, Alfie and Charlie Walker, as they attended their first workshop of 2018 at Byrmore Academy in Somerset. Alfie aged 12, the older of the two brothers, gives us his take on his experience at his second ever workshop:

“Earlier this month I attended the first workshop of 2018 which was held at Brymore Academy in Somerset, I have been looking forward to this since I attended my first workshop last summer.

This is the second YDP workshop I have attended, and it was really good to be able to put into practice the skills I learnt at the first one and be around other young people who share the same interests as me, and learn new skills from instructors that I have never met before.

There were about 28 students in total and after an introduction we were split into small groups where we got to have a go at washing, clipping, dressing, halter work, stock judging and ring craft with the various different instructors (sorry, I’m terrible with names!). All the instructors were full of support and gave us great advice at each section of the workshop and I appreciate that they give up their time to help educate people like myself. I am most grateful to the Aberdeen-Angus Cattle society and Gayle for making these workshops happen.

I really can’t put into words what YDP means to me, I have a huge interest in cattle but don’t come from a farming background but thanks to YDP I have had the opportunity to try my hand at showing at The Southern England Aberdeen-Angus Calf Show which I absolutely loved, I would never have had this chance if it wasn’t for YDP. I have also gained confidence to know that I can live my dream even though I don’t come from a farming family, so much so I now visit a local farm every Saturday where I help out and have fulfilled one of my dreams of helping deliver a calf. I would really love to attend other events in the future and to do some more showing if the chance comes along.

I think I mentioned the last time I wrote that I would recommend these workshops to anyone who is interested in learning new skills, making new likeminded friends and generally having a fantastic time. Thank you everyone who helps make these workshops possible.”

Alfie’s younger brother Charlie, aged 9 has also given us his take on his experience after what was his first ever YDP workshop – we were delighted to welcome Charlie on board!

“Hello my name is Charlie, I am 9 years old and I am Alfie’s brother. I attended my first YDP workshop with Alfie at Brymore. Alfie wasn’t so keen on me tagging along but like Alfie I love all things to do with farming and I want to learn as much as I can.

I was a bit nervous about the workshop as I am not very good at meeting new people or taking to people I don’t know, but it was really good fun and I learned lots.

At the start of the workshop we had to introduce ourselves through the person we were next to, this was fun and I learnt a bit about the person I was next to. We got split into groups and I think Alfie was happy I wasn’t with him!

I learned all about how to wash the cattle with Nick who was really nice and talked me through what we were doing, I got to dress the cattle to make them look good for the show ring and I was able to have a go at clipping. This was really scary as I didn’t want to clip the wrong bits and I didn’t really like the feel of the clippers but Linny was really nice and made me feel like I was doing a good job. I was able to have a go at some halter work but got in a bit of a muddle with this, we done stock judging, this is the bit I was most worried about as Alfie had told me I would have to give my reasoning but it was okay, my dad explained how I find it hard to talk to new people and I didn’t have to do it, dad was able to write down the answers I gave him on the cattle and it was fine. We ended on ringcraft which I really enjoyed, I am a bit small to use the stick and control the cattle at the same time, but I had a really good try and I felt really pleased with myself at the end of the day.

I would like to say a big thank you to all the instructors for teaching me so much and being so kind and patient, I would also like to say thank you to Gayle who works really hard at putting these workshops together.

I hope I can attend another workshop this year, I would really like the chance to go to a proper show and help someone with their cattle but mum seems to think I need to be a bit older and bigger to do this!”

We loved hearing from both Alfie and Charlie on their experience at the first YDP workshop of the season. We are glad that the boys enjoy coming to the workshop and were able to learn new skills and meet others with similar interests – this is what the YDP is all about! We’d also like to give a special mention to young Charlie who did a great job overcoming some of his nerves and taking part so brilliantly in all the activities, very well done!

We look forward to hearing from the brothers in the future. Make sure to check out the rest of the YDP workshops running throughout the country and make sure to get involved. The workshops provide a great opportunity to develop new skills and meet people with similar interests and we’d just like to send out a reminder that if you would like to be involved in the YDP workshops, you can find out more information at: http://aberdeen-angus.co.uk/youth-development/.

Check out the other images from the event below:

team 1

clipping

dressing 2

Halters