Zoe Malone represents Northern Territory on national stage

Department of Primary Industry and Resources

The AgriFutures Rural Womens Award is Australias leadingaward in acknowledging and supporting the essential role women play in ruraland regional businesses, industries and communities. Nominations for the 2020award open today.

A Darwin local andemployee of the Department of Primary Industry and Resources, Ms Malone was oneof seven finalists from across Australia in the running for the award bursaryto further progress her winning project.

Passionate about the role people and communities play increating strong and vibrant regions, Ms Malone has spent most of her lifeliving in rural and regional Australia, with over a decade spent in theNorthern Territory.

My personal andprofessional experiences have led me to recognise that many grassrootscommunity groups struggle to keep up with increasing governance andaccountability demands, Ms Malone said.

This leads to morepressure being placed on volunteers, and people being put off getting involvedat all.

My project, theVillage Green, will make it easier for volunteers and community groups tonavigate their way through compliance and governance demands.

Ms Malone was awarded a $10,000 bursaryafter taking out the Northern Territory award earlier this year.

In bringing her project to life, Ms Malone is using her Westpac bursaryto connect with a diverse range of community groups and volunteers tounderstand their needs, with plans to develop an online toolkit.

The toolkit will provide a platform that can be used by diverse groupsto identify governance priorities and connect to useful resources that arefreely available online.

Ms Malone also plans to engage with governance experts to refine theresources and test the toolkit with community groups to ensure it providespractical benefits.

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