Chief Whip Mark Spencer has applauded the work of Young Farmers’ Clubs and stated their importance in rural communities.

In an interview with current vice chairman Dewi Parry from Clwyd Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs in his office in the Houses of Parliament, Mr Spencer was clear about the role NFYFC had played in his own personal and professional development as well as its part in developing rural young people today.

When asked about the role of YFCs in rural communities, Mr Spencer said: “I think they’re absolutely fundamental. Young people need somewhere to go, social activities to enjoy, the ability to network and socialise with each other. Young Farmers is the perfect platform to do that in a safe environment, in a structured way. It gets you out having fun, it gets you meeting people and socialising.”

Mr Spencer said that serving as NFYFC national chairman gave him valuable experience in dealing with difficult situations.

He said: “It was a great experience and something that has prepared me for the bumpy ride that the nation is feeling at this moment in time. It’s one of the best roles I’ve ever done in my life."

The interview was recorded as a special message for YFC members to be released during National Young Farmers’ Week this week to demonstrate how YFC develops skills and influences careers.

This is the fifth National Young Farmers’ Week and the aim of the week is to promote YFCs to more rural young people so they are aware of the benefits the clubs can offer them by providing an active social network and developing skills.

The skills developed through NFYFC’s competitions, training, travel and agricultural activities are what inspired Mr Spencer’s political career, he said.

“I still think of myself as a farmer, although I don’t get a lot of time to do that, but I think Young Farmers pulled me into politics slowly.

“You sort of get drawn into young people’s issues, whether that is housing, rural transport, the issues around access into agriculture, succession planning… so you find yourself moving from thinking about rugby and socialising and drawn into those small ‘p’ political issues."

During the interview, Mr Spencer also shared a message of support for National Young Farmers’ Week and urged future chairmen to “make sure you leave YFC there for future generations”.

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