Shows seek next leaders

The Showgirl Awards offer a chance for young women to learn leadership and professional skills. West Moreton and Brisbane Valley Subchamber Showgirl runner up Lucy Bond, winner Michayla Cowley, and Queensland Country Life Showgirl runner Up Olivia Harrison at the Sub Chamber finals last year. Picture: FILE

Show societies are calling for young people to participate in the Showgirl and Rural Ambassador programs.

The leadership programs develop public speaking and networking skills, which are invaluable for young adults beginning their working lives.

The Showgirl program is an excellent opportunity for young women aged 18 to 28 to become more involved in their community, develop leadership skills, and work on their personal development.

The Queensland Rural Ambassador Awards is a leadership program for men and women aged 20 and 30 who are passionate about rural and regional Queensland.

Lowood Show Society president Lynell Jendra said they were looking for more people to take part in their programs.

“We’ve got one Showgirl at the moment but no Rural Ambassadors,” she said.

“We haven’t had a Rural Ambassador for about three years.”

Entrants do not have to live in the vicinity of the township, opening up the possibility for young people further afield to throw their hat in the ring.

“The Rural Ambassador really should have a rural background,” Mrs Jendra said.

2023 Queensland Country Life Showgirl Runner-Up Olivia Harrison proudly represented the Toogoolawah Show Society and the West Moreton and Brisbane Valley Sub-Chamber at the Ekka last year.

Mrs Harrison said the biggest benefit she gained from participating in the Showgirl Awards was confidence.

“Confidence in things like public speaking and talking to people,” she said.

“Particularly at state level, at the Ekka, you can channel your passions and your interests and learn to give them a proper voice.”

The workshops taught her the confidence to express herself and her opinions.

“It’s a skill to have an opinion on something and to be able to voice that opinion,” Mrs Harrison said.

“That’s a big thing, especially as a young female, to be able to strengthen that self confidence in your own opinion.”

The skills participants gain from the Showgirl and Rural Ambassador programs are transferable into professional and personal settings, especially learning how to communicate effectively with a wide range of people in different scenarios and articulate yourself well.

“To me, if I was employing someone and they had on their resume that they were a Showgirl or a Rural Ambassador, that’s a big tick because you know that they’re personable,” Mrs Harrison said.

It also opens the door to make connections, whether it’s new friends or professional contacts.

“You come across so many different people from so many walks of life,” Mrs Harrison said.

“Those connections, you don’t know where they’re going to go.

“They could help professionally, or personally, you can make good friends, you can make work connections.”

It’s also given her the opportunity to travel regional Queensland, visiting the shows in Bell, Dirranbandi, Proston, and she is about to go to Eidsvold for the Showgirl judging.

Mrs Harrison encouraged anyone thinking about participating to give it a go and ‘be themselves’.

“Go into it fully with no expectations,” she said.

“Don’t go in with any preconceived ideas about what it is and just give yourself fully to the experience and it will one hundred percent give back to you.”

Lowood Show Society can be contact at lowoodshowsociety@bigpond.com

Visit qldagshows.com.au for more information on the competitions.