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10th June 2004

Sherrill Dackers

Rural Women New Zealand appoints new President
Rural Women New Zealand (RWNZ) announces the appointment of Sherrill Dackers as their new National President.

The Whangarei woman takes over the position from Ellen Ramsay, who has recently completed her 3-year term.

A member of RWNZ for over 30 years, Mrs Dackers has recently served as a regional representative of Northland on the organisation’s National Council.

Mrs Dackers married into a Northland rural community after growing up in Te Kuiti and New Plymouth.

Personal experience has taught her that the lack of access to basic services is a real problem for many rural people.

“Rural communities throughout New Zealand are struggling under a burden of neglect and abandonment as social services become increasingly centralised. Rural Women New Zealand does essential lobbying at local and national levels so that rural communities and families are not swept under the carpet,” she says.

Mrs Dackers says the agricultural economy in New Zealand can only be sustained through the support of viable communities which provide for certain social needs, a fact that successive governments appear to have overlooked.

Now serving as a Trustee on the Institute of Rural Health, Mrs Dackers also sits on consumer reference groups for the Cervical Screening Unit and Breast Scanning Aotearoa.

As National President of RWNZ, she represents the interests of members from over 300 branches located in rural areas throughout New Zealand. The membership base covers 20% of the total women involved in a rural occupation.

Mrs Dackers pays tribute to Ellen Ramsay, an Otago farmer whose untiring and dedicated leadership has ensured the ongoing relevance of RWNZ to New Zealand’s society and the economy.

She says one of the next challenges to face the organisation is the pending Charities Bill that threatens to heap unnecessary compliance costs on charitable organisations.

For further information contact: Sherrill Dackers
President - Rural Women New Zealand


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