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The next deadline for The Nib is May 31, 2022

Submission of Information to be Included:  Please send any information you wish to have included in an edition of the Nib to secretarytreasurer@ecfwa.ca. Eligible information includes: Niblets (updates on personal accomplishments of members - ie. new job, marriage, child, etc.), summary of ECFWA affiliated event, job postings, upcoming ECFWA affiliated event, other relevant upcoming professional development opportunities, etc.

The most recent edition of the Nib is printed in its entirety below. 
Past editions are available by clicking on the links.

The Nib -- September 2020
ECFWA - The Nib - September 2020
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The Nib - September 2020

In this edition

Prez says
Upcoming events
CFWF award winners
Past ECFWA webinars
Mental well-being and Covid-19
Welcome to our new members


Prez says 
Rachel Telford, ECFWA President

It’s hard to believe it is already the end of September and we have been dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic for seven months now.

For the first time in years, I didn’t take the train into Toronto to attend the Canadian National Exhibition to work in The Farm. My local agricultural fair would have been earlier this month. This past weekend, I would have welcomed you and our national associates to Windsor for the CFWF conference.

These event cancellations are disappointing; but I am looking forward to the time we are once again able to attend fairs and events and I am hopeful that we will be able to do so next year.

In the meantime, there have been several online events to attend – it’s interesting to see the different platforms and technologies available that allow us to have meetings and virtual farm shows.

We had great attendance for two webinars ECFWA hosted over the summer – on farm safety, and on changing consumer diets during COVID-19. If you missed them, check out the video recordings in this edition of the Nib.

I know that for many of our members, the networking opportunities at events is one of the main reasons you are involved with our association. The ECFWA Board of Directors has set a goal to offer value for your membership despite the fact we can’t have in-person events. As we head into fall, there will be more opportunities for us to connect virtually - we are planning additional professional development webinars in the coming months. I know it isn’t the same, but we will do our best to give you plenty of opportunities to connect with ECFWA.

If you have any questions or suggestions, please reach out to me president@ecfwa.ca

Upcoming events

We can't gather in-person, but we recognize that professional development and networking continue to be important for ECFWA members. While restrictions on gatherings remain in place, we are planning some virtual activities for our members. 

November 23: Fireside Chat with The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, moderated by Kelsey Johnson.
3:45 p.m., via Zoom.
Watch your email for a link to register.

June 30-July 4, 2021:  IFAJ Congress, Denmark.
The congress originally scheduled for 2020 has been rescheduled to 2021. Visit the Facebook page to find out more (the congress website will be updated as details are confirmed). 

September 23-27, 2021: CFWF Conference, Windsor
Save the date! ECFWA has rescheduled the 2020 conference and will be inviting our colleagues from across the country to join us in Windsor in 2021.

CFWF award winners

Celebrating Canadian Excellence in Agricultural Journalism
The best and brightest agricultural journalists, broadcasters, communicators and photographers were honoured at the 2020 Canadian Farm Writers’ Federation (CFWF) Awards Ceremony, held on September 24, 2020 as an online event due to the postponement of CFWF’s annual conference.

Gold, silver and bronze awards were presented in 15 categories via Zoom. A total of 43 awards were presented with winners taking home cheques of $300, $200 and $100 for gold, silver and bronze respectively.

Winners were chosen by 24 judges from across Canada, the United States and the UK. These judges included journalists, photographers, professors, farmers and communicators from different media and publications, and a mix of agricultural and non-agricultural backgrounds.

ECFWA was pleased to sponsor the News Release category.

Congratulations to ECFWA members who took home prizes!

View all winners in the awards program.
Electronic Media - Audio
Stephanie Gordon
Top Crop Manager
Inputs: Takeaways from the Canola Discovery Forum 2019
Electronic Media - Audio
Karen Davidson 
Grower Calling
Oleen Smethurst, Costco Canada, focuses on flavour
General Periodical
Owen Roberts
University of Guelph Research magazine:
Advancing Research
Weekly Press Reporting
Matt McIntosh
Bee-based disease prevention
Did you miss the webinars held over the summer? 
Or want to see them again? Here's your chance!
Visit the CFWF website for more of our past webinars, and stay tuned for more webinars in the coming months. 
Farm Safety
Covid-19 and Consumer Behaviour

Well-being during Covid-19

Unquestionably, these are tough days. The COVID-19 pandemic has required us to make significant changes professionally and personally, in a very short period of time, while also attending to our feelings around the disease. For many of us, we may be having trouble partaking in usual activities that support our well-being. This resource was designed to help stimulate ideas for well-being activities during COVID-19.

The idea came during our well-being discussion during the Ontario Veterinary College’s Resilience Rotation for fourth year DVM students in March. (This is a 1-week elective rotation involving well-being and resilience instruction in an experiential learning format). Instead of brainstorming well-being activities during “normal times”, the students and I decided to create a list of activities that could be done within COVID restrictions. The list took on a life of its own from there, as so many individuals and organizations are sharing great ideas for well-being! I would like to thank the following students for their contributions: Alison Brennan, Jacqueline Brooks, Aime Brown, Werdah Iqbal, Clarissa O’Sullivan, Andrea Patterson, Alyssa Rice, and Salomon Schroeter. I would also like to thank the talented Dr. Alex Sawatzky for her incredible artistic design and drawings.

The resource is based around Peggy Swarbrick’s Model of Wellness (pswarbrick@cspnj.org) – it is a terrific resource for those who may be looking to learn more. I think it is really important (especially right now) to point out that we don’t need to attend to ALL domains at once, or all proposed activities. Instead, we can choose those activities that most appeal to us and make whatever small changes are within our control. And it is essential that we be compassionate with ourselves during the process. Whatever we are able to do is great, regardless of the size of the change. Even small changes can be very powerful! They can induce feelings of positivity, personal control, and a sense of agency – and small changes can add up to something really impactful.

I hope this guide is helpful. I’m rooting for you.
Andria Jones-Bitton

Dr. Andria Jones-Bitton
Associate Professor, Department of Population Medicine
Director of Well-Being Programming, Ontario Veterinary College
University of Guelph
Email: aqjones@uoguelph.ca
Artistic Design:
Dr. Alex Sawatzky
Illustrator and Designer
Email: as@alex-sawatzky.com

Download the full resource (PDF)

Welcome to our new members!

Rebecca Hannam
Jordan Snobelen


Have news to share? Send it to secretarytreasurer@ecfwa.ca to include in our next edition of The Nib.
ECFWA member Andrew Campbell partnered with Crystal Mackay to launch Utensil.ca.
Visit their website to learn more about their resources, videos, speakers, training and coaching services.
Kelsey Johnson has recently wrapped up a stint as an economics reporter with Reuters, and has gone back to school to study for a Masters in Public Policy and Administration at Carleton University. She will be writing for iPolitics' 'The Sprout' in her spare time.
The Nib is a distribution for members, by members of the Eastern Canada Farm Writers' Association.

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Contact: Mary Feldskov, secretarytreasurer@ecfwa.ca

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