Red polo shirt issued by the Benalla Women on Farms Gathering committee. The red colour represents the colour of a red rose and was chosen to symbolise the theme for the 2005 Benalla Women on Farms Gathering 'Take Time to Smell the Roses'. According to the 2005 Benalla Gathering Program, 'Our theme was chosen not just because the rose is an intrinsic part of Benalla's identity but also as a reminder that we all need to build personal time into our lives and pause from time to time to appreciate all the good things around us'. During the Gathering all members of the Benalla Women on Farms Gathering committee wore the polo shirts so that they could be easily recognisable to Gathering attendees. The polo shirt was also worn at the 2004 Horsham Gathering in order to promote the 2005 Benalla Gathering.
Part of Museums Victoria's Invisible Farmer Project Collection. The Invisible Farmer Project was the largest ever study of Australian women on the land, uncovering the histories and stories of Australian women in agriculture. It began as a pilot project (2015-2016) and evolved into a three year (2017-2020) nation-wide partnership between rural communities, academic, government and cultural organisations, funded by the Australian Research Council.the absence of rural women in mainstream histories and museums.

Physical Description

Red polyester/cotton knit fabric polo shirt with knitted band collar, hemmed short sleeves. Embroidered theme logo over left breast reads 'take time to smell the roses' above an embroidered rose, followed by 'WOFG, Benalla, 2005'. Lettering in yellow thread, rose in red, green and black thread. Neck label reads 'Redback Promotional Products of Shepparton, Victoria' and manufacturer's label reads, 'Winning Spirit, Size L, Style No. PS11', with fabric content, washing instructions and 'Made in China'.


This object was collected by a member of the organising committee for the 2005 Benalla Gathering. It represents and celebrates the voluntary work of those women who worked on the committee to bring about the Gathering. A key feature that unites all Victorian Women on Farms Gatherings is the voluntary nature of these events. Women from the local region usually come together approximately one to two years prior to the Gathering to begin planning and organising, which includes securing a venue, sponsorship, accommodation, catering, publicity, tours, workshops and speakers. During the event the organising committee continue to oversee and run the Gathering, and it is customary for them to wear something that will make them identifiable to Gathering participants. Objects such as this red polo shirt represent the voluntary contribution that these women have made not only to the Gatherings themselves, but also to their local communities and to the wider rural women's movement in Australia.

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