The highly anticipated 2018 Youth Development Programme final took place last month where keen youngsters from around the country came together to demonstrate their skills across a number of different activities. Hailing from Nairn, a little town outside of Inverness was April Forbes aged 13 as she picked up 1st position in the junior section of the event. We speak to April to find out how she first got involved with the breed, her thoughts on the Youth Development Programme and her plans for the future.
April attends Nairn Academy and when she is not helping around the family farm she enjoys horse riding. She is a proud member of the Moray and Nairn pony club and regularly competes in show jumping and eventing competitions throughout the year.
When did you first get involved with Aberdeen-Angus?
“Our Aberdeen-Angus herd was started out around the early 90s by my grandma, Lena Forbes. She always liked the Aberdeen-Angus breed because they are lower maintenance than continental breeds and they produce quality beef. I have been brought up around Aberdeen-Angus my whole life through the farm and I wouldn’t change it for the world.”
For how long have you been involved with the YDP?
“The first time I got involved with the Youth Development Programme was when I was 8 or 9 years old when I attended a workshop in Aberdeenshire. This is now the 2nd year I’ve been involved in the programme. The YDP is a great place to meet people with similar interests and provides a great opportunity to work with cattle. The trainers are also great at providing lots of encouragement and help.”
What was your immediate reaction when you found out you’d came out on top in your section?
“As it was my first time qualifying for the final I didn’t come with any intentions of winning and was just coming for the experience. To be able to win on my first time being here was an amazing feeling!”
What are your career plans and ambitions for the future?
“When I’m older I would like to follow in my family footsteps and work on the farm, I want to own my own Aberdeen-Angus herd.”
Do you have any words of advice for any other young enthusiasts?
“My words of advice for other people thinking of giving the YDP a try would be, always be enthusiastic to learn as the trainers are fantastic and give you lots of help. Don’t worry if you have no experience as the trainers encourage all abilities and ages, and lastly you should just go for it and get involved – you won’t regret it.”
We would like to congratulate April on her amazing achievement as she picks up 1st position at her first ever YDP final! We look forward to hearing from April in the not so distant future and wish her all the best in her very bright future.