Innovative, enthusiastic young people with a passion for the sheep sector are being invited to drive the industry forward.

And with that in mind, the National Sheep Association (NSA) Next Generation is looking for up to 12 individuals to become ambassadors in 2018.

The deadline for applications is fast approaching, on Sunday, December 17.

The NSA Next Generation Ambassador programme is aimed at young individuals, aged 20-34 on Sunday, December 31, involved in the sheep sector who wish to expand and develop their knowledge.

The ambassadors are selected to take part in five two/three day technical and personal development sessions throughout the year.

Richard Taylor, an existing NSA Next Generation Ambassador said: “I would urge anyone wanting to learn more about the industry alongside like-minded young people to apply for the NSA Next Generation Ambassador programme.

“It’s a brilliant opportunity and each session gives you so much to take home and think about in relation to your own flock, while giving you confidence to try new ideas.”

Supporting the sheep industry’s next generation is a major area of work for NSA, which involves a huge range of activities including training and scholarship signposting, Next Generation Shepherd competitions, job and work experience advertising, as well as the NSA Next Generation Ambassadors.

The 2018 group will be the fifth of its kind, after the initiative was launched in 2014. Ambassadors are also encouraged to continue their involvement with NSA after their year on the programme through their regional committees, or at local and national NSA events.

Dan Pritchard, another existing NSA Next Generation Ambassador, added: “I’ve feel as if I’ve learnt so many new skills to enhance my own business, while networking with several influential figures in the sheep sector.

“Not to mention the life-long friends I’ve made from all over the UK. I’d highly recommend applying to become an NSA Next Generation Ambassador to anyone who is keen to learn more about our fantastic industry.”

Online applications are now open for the 2018 NSA Next Generation Ambassador group

The deadline for applications is Sunday, December 17.