Women invited to join city council

Step up: Women in Campaspe are being encouraged to attend a free seminar designed to get more women elected to Victorian councils. Photo by Cath Gray

A series of free seminars designed to get more women elected to Victorian councils are coming soon to the Campaspe area.

The Victorian government-funded Women Leading Locally program aims to increase the number of women running for local office in the next election, with 120 scholarships on offer to guide candidates considering being elected.

The program targets women in 30 local government areas that had the lowest female representation in the October 2020 elections, including Campaspe region.

The seminars will cover the many benefits of having more women in council chambers, supporting other candidates for office, how to apply for a scholarship and a chance to meet like-minded people.

Women for Election chief executive Licia Heath, a former independent candidate for the Wentworth federal seat, and coach advisor Ruth McGowan, author of Get electedwill both present during the interactive seminars.

The program aims to help the government reach its target of at least 50/50 women councilors by 2025.

Sessions will take place in Melbourne’s CBD, June 1, 5-8pm; Traralgon, June 2, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Narre Warren, June 4, 1 to 4 p.m.; Horsham, June 7, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Geelong, June 8, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Wangaratta, June 15, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Kerang, June 16, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Details of each particular event can be found at https://communitydirectors.com.au/training/women-lead

Applications are welcome from women of all ages and from all walks of life who are passionate about their local community. Young women, First Nations women, women living with disabilities, women from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds, and LGBTQI+ women are particularly encouraged to apply.

Applications for the 2022 Women Leading Locally Fellowship are open until June 28 and provide a free opportunity for 60 women to be supported to run for local office in 2024. A further 60 fellows will be selected in 2023.

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