Jill Willows – 1956 – 2016
Jill Willows was a bright, vibrant and independent woman who lived live to its very fullest. As a farmer, business woman, Nuffield scholar, friend or relative, she was someone who burst with enthusiasm, kindness and generosity. Jill was also hugely committed to young people, and helping them to find ways to develop themselves in the farming sector. She sponsored several Nuffield scholars and set up an award for promising students at Harper Adams University.
She also loved socialising, and many of her friends have happy memories of time spent in her company, whether at the Farmers Club in London, her home in South Yorkshire or her holiday home in Filey. Jill’s friends are committed to ensuring her memory and her values continue to live on – particularly her passion for helping young people – which is why they are organising a range of fundraising events to help support the charities she supported.
I am also good friends with Mary and Graham Storrie, whose daughter was murdered in 2003. In her name, they have established the Rosie May Foundation, aiming to give children the future she was so tragically denied. It was with these two inspirational friends that i found myself visiting a group of female farmers in Nepal in October 2016.
The Women’s progressive agricultural group operates as a co-operative and is located near Chitwan national park, Nepal. We are working with these inspiring female farmers to improve their livelihoods and create positive futures for their children.
I will be travelling back to Nepal this August to help these women build a water tank and collection centre, working with them to develop their organic farming. We wish to maintain Jill's desire to help young people who perhaps wouldn’t always get a chance by engaging young farmers from the UK in a knowledge and cultural exchange with the people of Nepal.
Learn more about our volunteer programme here - http://www.eco-centre.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/Farming_volunteering_Nepal-2017.pdf
And the Rosie May Foundation here - http://www.rosie-may.com/
Money raised will aim to support the women’s group who have constructed a one floor community building for
collecting vegetables and milk so that female farmers will get fair prices for
their products. They are planning to add another floor to be able to expand the
work of the group and use as an important office room, thus this proposal is to
add one floor to the building, as well as to support increased income
generating activities. The Women’s group has spent two years constructing a
lift drinking water and irrigation system. Through this project they have
access to clean drinking water but currently, the reservoir tank is not
sufficient for irrigation throughout the year. They have been using irrigation
for vegetable production which is the most important for their livelihood, and
we are aiming to help build a more proficient water reservoir tank. The women’s
group is an inspiring, lively and welcoming group who are not only willing, but
excited at the opportunity to welcome Volunteers to help and support the building and to help in their community.