Rural Women's Network

About the Victorian Rural Women's Network

The Victorian Rural Women’s Network (the Network) was originally established in 1986 to better recognise the contributions of rural women and build stronger links to government. Since its establishment, the Network has been a forum for women to share skills, resources and information for collective benefit.

Key programs and priorities of the Network have changed over time as the needs of rural women have evolved. Today, activities are focused on improving workforce participation, growing job opportunities, and supporting more women in leadership and decision-making roles in rural and regional Victoria.

Aligning with the Victorian Government's gender equity policies and strategies, the Network encourages women to have an active voice in industry, community and government leadership and decision-making.

The Network delivers a range of programs, workshops and digital communications to connect women to development and training opportunities, grants and resources, and other valuable information from across the Victorian Government and our network of partners.

The Rural Women’s Network an Agriculture Victoria program and part of the Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action (DEECA).

Read more about the first Rural Women’s Network and the Victorian Government’s 2017 announcement.

Rural Women’s Leadership and Mentoring Programs

The Mentoring Program pairs rural women together for a peer-to-peer exchange of skills and experience. Working with skilled facilitators, participants will identify individual, career or business goals, and work to implement change with the support and accountability of their mentoring partner.
Capped allowances for childcare, travel and accommodation are available for those who require this support.

The Leadership Program provides women with support to participate in training and study that accelerates their development as leaders. Participants work closely as a group to explore issues impacting rural women, learn from subject matter experts, and connect with other rural women from across Victoria.
Each participant is eligible for up to $10,000 (excl GST) in funding support toward the agreed costs of study, travel, accommodation, and childcare.

Applications for 2023 Programs are now closed.
Applications for 2024 Programs will open in December 2023.

Subscribe to the Rural Women’s Network newsletter to be notified when applications open.

AgriFutures Australia Rural Women’s Award

The Rural Women’s Network collaborates with AgriFutures Australia to celebrate the essential role women play in rural industries, businesses and communities. Find out more about the Rural Women’s Award, including previous Victorian Finalists and Winners.

Applications for the 2023 Award are now closed.
Applications for the 2024 Award will open in September 2023.

Subscribe to the Rural Women’s Network newsletter to be notified when applications open.

Subscribe to the Rural Women's Network

Our regular e-newsletter helps subscribers feel supported and informed so they can thrive and excel in their businesses and communities. It is free to subscribe and keeps rural women informed of:

  • inspiring stories from rural women from across Victoria
  • upcoming programs, training and events
  • grant opportunities from across the Victorian Government
  • opportunities for scholarships or other supports
  • publications and resources
  • links to other useful services from partners.

Your details will not be used for any other purpose or provided to any third party. See our privacy policy.

More information

If you have any queries, please contact the Network Team at

Page last updated: 28 Feb 2023