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SECTION E DI TOR I A L SU BT I T L E OR DI SC L A I M E R


This quarter sees the RRR Network reach the end of our WA Government Funding Agreement as we move towards the goal of full financial sustainability. Since our incorporation in December 2016 we have achieved many things and by the 30th June 2019 the RRR Network will have:

Undertaken research and made a submission to the National Enquiry into Sexual Harassment in Australian workplaces; with a specific focus on the economic and social impacts in the WA rural and regional context. Undertaken 12 rural and regional community forums on behalf of the Department of Communities to provide input in the State Government’s 10 Year Women’s Voices plan.

Delivered Leadership training in partnership with Curtin University to 60 WA women with funding support from Muresk Institute. One of the first women to complete the program was recently named Telstra WA Businesswoman of the Year.

The RRR Network’s activities are focused on the economic development of regional WA. Whilst we have a focus on women, many of the programs we are developing are non-gender specific and will lead to tangible industry and community development outcomes. We have recently received funding approval from the Small Business Development Corporation to deliver non-gender specific small business entrepreneurial training workshops in several WA towns.

Delivered a non-gender specific Agrifood Entrepreneurs program to 30 emerging food businesses in WA with funding support from Muresk Institute, that has already lead to the development and expansion of a number of new businesses regional WA. Delivered a conference for 150 women focussed on professional development and leadership skills.

We hope to continue to work with you to develop your communities and build on what already makes regional WA,

Developed new funding partnership for the Rural Women’s Awards that included the opportunity for finalists to complete the highly acclaimed, commercially focused Curtin University Ignition program.

a great place to live and work.

Jackie Jarvis

Successfully delivered 2 Rural Women’s Award events.

Chief Executive Officer

Provided detailed, researched advice to the WA State Government on the potential of utilising a refugee workforce in regional WA.

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Rural, Regional, Remote Women’s Network of Western Australia www.rrrnetwork.com.au

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COVER Belinda Lay WESTERN AUSTRALIA’S AGRIFUTURES™ RURAL WOMAN OF THE YEAR 2019

THE BOARD

THE MAGAZINE

CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

SUBMISSIONS, ADVERTISING ENQUIRIES

Jackie Jarvis (Margaret River)

GENERAL ENQUIRIES & SUBSCRIPTIONS

CHAIR

admin@rrrnetwork.com.au

Lyn Farrell (Bunbury)

PRODUCTION, DESIGN & ARTWORK

DEPUTY CHAIR Anna Dixon (Northam)

Wilderness Publishing

SECRETARY

PRINTING

Cath Lyons (Perth)

A+L Printers, Bunbury WA

TREASURER

Sarah Lang (Busselton)

PUBLISHED BY

COMMITTEE

RRR Regional Network

Jo Barrett-Lennard (Dunsborough) Nicole Batten (Yuna)

RMB 790 Wirring Road, Margaret River WA

Elizabeth Brennan (Wongan Hills)

The Stronger Conference

www.rrrnetwork.com.au

Sue Middleton (Wongan Hills)

All content is subject to copyright and may not be reproduced in any form without written permission from the publisher. Opinions represented in RRR Regional Network Quarterly are not necessarily those of the publisher. RRR Regional Newtwork Quarterly is published seasonally. PEFC Certified Printing

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The Blue Tree Project

The Red Country Music Festival - Troy-Cassar Daley

CONTENTS

WELCOME

THE QUARTERLY

The WINTER Issue 2019

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AG R I F U T U R E S™ RU R A L WOM A N OF T H E Y E A R 2 019

0 6

Winner, Belinda Lay

T H E ST RONG E R C ON F E R E NC E

Presented by the RRR Network

NEWS & REVIEWS

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BOOKS, PODCASTS AND SOCIAL MEDIA The interesting & entertaining

SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE insights and interest

WHAT’S ON

AROUND THE REGIONS

CELEBRATING WOMEN THE WORK PLACE

CAREERS IN FOCUS

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WHAT’S ON & THE NETWORK CALENDAR All the dates & details of events you will love

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SHARING OUR ROADS WITH WILDLIFE

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ROSIE BATTY DIGS DEEPER IN KALGOORLIE

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GROUND BREAKING ARTS INITIATIVE

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STORIES FROM THE LAND , Nic Duncan

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WOMEN MEAN BUSINESS the Willy Regan story

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WHAT LIES BENEATH THE FUN-HOUSE MIRROR

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TRAVEL & ADVENTURE

ESPERANCE An abundance of extraordinary beauty

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HEALTH & WELL BEING

FRIENDS FOR HEALTH Jean Hailes for Women’s’ Health

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SEASONAL PRODUCE

PRODUCE TO PLATE family, farming and a winter warmer recipe

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WRAP UP

HIGHLIGHTS Supporters, members and corporate sponsors.

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WESTERN AUSTRALIA’S

AGRIFUTURES™

RURAL WOMAN of the YEAR Written by JACKIE JARVIS Images DPIRD

The Hon. Alannah MacTiernan MLC with 2019 AgriFutures Rural Woman of the year Belinda Lay

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SECTION E DI TOR I A L SU BT I T L E OR DI SC L A I M E R

E

program, Ignition or the Regional Leadership Masterclass program. Alternatively, they could opt to join the developed and delivered by Curtain University in Partnership with the RRR Network of WA.

sperance-based grains and sheep farmer, Belinda Lay, was announced as the Western Australian winner of the prestigious 2019 AgriFutures Rural Women’s Award at the Perth ceremony held in March. The award provides a platform to inspire rural and regional women and develop skills to benefit their industries and communities.

The WA Rural Women’s Award is supported by Westpac, the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, CBH Group, Curtin University and the RRR Network of WA.

Belinda, who is based on a grain and sheep farm, received a $10,000 business development award to help progress her project to monitor sheep through the use of specially designed collars that will transform the use of technological data for onfarm animal welfare outcomes.

Regional Development Minister, the Hon. Alannah MacTiernan MLC, presented the award at a gala event held at Perth’s new Optus Stadium, where she congratulated all four Rural Women’s’ Award finalists in the contribution and commitment to agribusiness and rural and regional communities in Western Australia.

The sheep collars will track data such as the animal’s GPS location, as well as alert the farmer when an animal shows unusual statistics, particularly during lambing. Belinda aims to change the way technology and livestock, which has been previously focused on manual handling, are viewed.

Minister MacTiernan said: ‘‘Belinda’s project shows the innovation that our farmers are driving in region WA, applying new technologies to produce better outcomes for both productivity and animal welfare. Recognition as a recipient of the 2019 WA Rural Women’s Award celebrates and empowers Belinda as one of WA’s brightest, most innovative women involved in agriculture.’’

Belinda won from an outstanding field of four finalists: LEAH BOUCHER, Kambalda-based information technology service provider.

The RRR Network is a proud partner of the AgriFutures Rural Women’s Award, with CEO Jackie Jarvis saying: ‘‘The Rural Women’s Award gives our organisation the opportuntiy to promote women in leadership positions and build their capacity. We are proud to host an event that brings together the who’s who of WA agribusiness and regional development leaders to celebrate the social, economic and community achievements of WA rural, regional and remote women.’’

TANYA KITTO, Geraldton-based lupin-grower and value-add farmer changing the view of lupins as a food source. JULIET GRIST, Denmark-based based economist, developing community engagement to achieve collective impacts. For the first time in the history of the WA awards event, finalists were offered the opportunity to enrol in Curtin University’s highly regarded intensive entrepreneurial training

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THE QUARTERLY AGR I F U T U R E S™ RU R A L WOM A N OF T H E Y E A R

‘‘Belinda’s project shows the innovation that our farmers are driving in regional WA, applying new technologies to produce better outcomes for both productivity and animal welfare. Recognition as a recipient of the 2019 WA Rural Women’s Award celebrates and empowers Belinda as one of WA’s brightest, most innovative women involved in agriculture.’’ Minister MacTiernan

ABOVE Perth’s Optus Stadium TOP MC for the night Sue Middleton presents the Hon. Alannah MacTiernan MLC with a copy of ‘WHAT DOES A FARMER LOOK LIKE?’ by Kim Storey

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THE QUARTERLY AGR I F U T U R E S™ RU R A L WOM A N OF T H E Y E A R

ABOVE Agrifutures Rural Women’s Award sponsors with the four finalists TOP Finalists enjoy a pre-awards

Sundowner. L-R Juliet Grist, Leah Boucher, Winner Belinda Lay and Tanya Kitto

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Written by JACKIE JARVIS Images ROSIE HENDERSON

L - R Amanda Walker, Doug Verley, Ashley Wiese, Marion Fulker and facilitator Maree Gooch Hyatt Regency Hotel – Perth R R R N E T WO R K

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THE QUARTERLY T H E R R R N ET WOR K : ST RONGE R C ON F E R E NC E

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n March, over 150 women from across WA came together in Perth for the inaugural

RRR Network Stronger Conference. With a focus on personal and professional development, conference delegates heard from a range of speakers with subjects as varied as farm safety and the role of a first responder, sexual harassment in rural industries, the role of business mentors, building a business from a remote location, as well as many other stories of personal and professional achievement. Light entertainment was provided by comedian Famous Sharron, who surprised delegates with a lunch time appearance, and then introduced the four finalists for the 2019 AgriFutures Rural Woman of the Year Award. The RRR Network “Stronger� conference was presented with the support of Gold Sponsor CSBP Fertilisers; and Silver Sponsors National Australia Bank and Telstra. Thanks also to SafeFarms WA, The Muresk Institute and Linley Valley Pork who supported the travel costs of some of our East Coast speakers.

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THE QUARTERLY T H E R R R N ET WOR K : ST RONGE R C ON F E R E NC E

image DANIELLE HALFORD PHOTOGRAPHY

ABOVE L-R Tessa Meecham, Renae Piggot, Hon Darren West MLA, Michaela Hendry, Chloe Blight ABOVE LEFT Frauke Bolten-Boshammer shares her journey from Germany to Kununurra and founding Kimberley Fine Diamonds LEFT RRR Network CEO Jackie Jarvis rounds out the highly

successful Stronger Conference for 2019

ABOVE Nkanda Beltz was one of our spectular guest speakers at the conference TOP LEFT Kay Gerard, Tania Edwards and Caroline Telfer LEFT Allie Steber with the Hon Mia Davies MLA and Stephanie Clarke

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THE QUARTERLY T H E R R R N ET WOR K : ST RONGE R C ON F E R E NC E

ABOVE Blow Your Own Minds Lisa Smith and Vicky Hodgson with Jillaroo Jess (centre) RIGHT Kim Storey with her book, ‘‘ WHAT DOES A FARMER LOOK LIKE?’’ BELOW The fabulous host of the Stronger

Conference, Esther Jones

The Stronger Conference placed a focus on personal and professional development. Conference delegates heard from a range of speakers with subjects as varied as farm safety and the role of a first responder, sexual harassment in rural industries, the role of business mentors, building a business from the remote location, as well as many other stories of personal and professional achievement.

ABOVE Vicky and Lisa try Famous Sharron’s signature moves RIGHT Sue Middleton and Gisela Kauffmann

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NEWS + REVIEWS

THE WATER BEARER Tracy Ryan - Fremantle Press Water is contained in these poems in many different ways: from the water filling a second-hand cooler in an old farmhouse, to ocean riptides and impassive dams; from swimming lessons to paddocks layered with water after rain. From scheme water, pipelines and a countryside in the grip of drought – the water in this collection is a many-sided metaphor. Tracy Ryan’s latest collection of poems is full of intimate intensity and clear vision, each poem wrought with consummate skill by ‘one of Australia’s most gifted poets’ (Marion May Campbell). Tracy Ryan was born and grew up in Western Australia. She has a BA in English from Curtin University and a BA (Hons) in French from the University of New England in NSW.

SUNSCREEN AND LIPSTICK Introduction by Liz Byrski and written by Hazel Brown, Goldie Goldbloom, T.A.G. Hungerford, Elizabeth Jolley (b.1923 d.2007), Simone Lazaroo, Natasha Lester, Sally Morgan, Alice Nelson, Glyn Parry, Deborah Robertson, and Kim Scott - Fremantle Press This book is all about women. From the mad excitement of first love to the grief of losing a parent, this is a summer collection about mums, daughters, wives and girlfriends from some of Australia’s best-loved writers. This is the perfect book to throw into your beachbag for a day on the sand or to slip into your handbag for a trip to the coffee shop. Some of the writers include Hazel Brown, the senior elder, who was a member for WA’s first metropolitan Commission of Elders. Sally Morgan well known for publishing bothadult and children’s books, including her acclaimed autobiography, My Place and Deborah Robertson, born in Bridgetown, studied at Curtin University and now teaches in the Department of English and Comparative Literature at Murdoch University.

BRUSH WITH GONDWANA Written by Janda Gooding and illustrated by Pat Dundas, Rica Erickson, Ellen Hickman, Penny Leech, Philippa Nikulinsky, Margaret Pieroni, and Katrina Syme - Fremantle Press Seven leading botanical artists are brought together for the first time in this beautifully illustrated book. Author Janda Gooding shares the stories behind each artist’s illustrations and reveals a rich and diverse record of Western Australia’s unique flora, fauna and fungi. ‘… more than 100 exquisite illustrations from seven of Australia’s leading botanical artists.’ — Australian Geographic

Reviews and links favour Australian writers and content. Featured books are available as eBooks.

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NEWS + REVIEWS SOM ET H I NG for EV E RYON E

A

ustralia’s South West is a mecca for all creatures, big and small. From woylies, kangaroos and

brushtail possums; to blue tongue lizards, kookaburras and red-tailed black cockatoos, many amazing creatures can be spotted on walk. The South West also has one of the longest whale watching seasons in the world, spanning from January to December. Catch

MEMBER SIGN-UP

humpback, southern right, blue and killer whales, as well as dolphins, rays and other ocean-dwelling animals. For more info visit: www.australiassouthwest.com.au

Support the RRR Network and actively engage with rural, regional and remote women to support and contribute to the economic and social wellbeing of their communities. VISIT www.rrrnetwork.com.au/join-us EMAIL admin@rrrnetwork.com.au PHONE (08) 6316 0407 or POST PAYMENT TO: 

RRR NETWORK 790 Wirring Road

Sigrid Thornton in front of the Orana Theatre Busselton.

S

et in the seaside centres of Busselton,

matured and prospered to become one

Bunbury, Dunsborough and Margaret

of the great film festivals of Australia.

River, CinefestOZ premieres feature

It is also noteworthy that the success of

films and events in the region’s cinemas,

CinefestOZ has also been paralleled with

wineries, small bars and galleries,

the growth of the Western Australian film

making it a feast for the senses and an

industry, with many of these WA films

unforgettable five-day getaway.

presented over the years. Join the fun from

CinefestOZ is a unique festival experience,

the 28th August - 1st September 2019,

where Australia’s best new films are

Visit the website for more details:

screened as they compete for the richest

www.cinefestoz.com

film prize in Australia. As a homegrown event, CinefestOZ has defied the odds,

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Margaret River WA 6285


CALENDAR W H AT ’ S ON in W E ST E R N AUST R A L I A

THE RED COUNTRY MUSIC FESTIVAL The Red Country Music Festival has just announced they are bringing country music legend, Troy CassarDaley, to Hedland on Saturday, 22 June, 2019. The Red Country Music Festival was created by Bradley Hall, a local Nyiyaparli man and established musician, with a vision to bring live country music back to the Pilbara. “This event is really about bringing the local Pilbara community together to enjoy awesome music from some of Australia’s best and gives local artists a platform to showcase their talents; be it in art, music and / or culture.” www.redcountrymusic.com.au

MOWANJUM FESTIVAL Mowanjum Festival is Western Australia’s oldest open access Indigenous dance event, attracting hundreds of visitors from across Australia and all over the world. It is a celebration of the vibrant, living culture of the Ngarinyin, Worrorra and Wunambal peoples, where visitors enjoy cultural workshops including ochre painting, boab nut carving, boomerang making, bush medicine, digeridoo playing and spear throwing. Come along and feast on bush tucker, view the art on display and mingle with the locals. Performers will participate in Junba, telling the stories of the Mowanjum people, a significant moment of celebration and deeply moving to the elders. www.mowanjumarts.com/festival

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AU T UMN 2019

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CALENDAR W H AT ’ S ON in W E ST E R N AUST R A L I A

NAMELESS JARNDUNMUNHA FESTIVAL For many years this iconic event has been an integral part of our isolated and beautiful community of Tom Price in the Western Australian Pilbara region. As the decades have passed since its inaugural event, The Nameless Festival has entertained the town with a myriad of events, entertainments and good food. The isolation makes this weekend so special – the anticipation in our town’s children as the festival rolls into town is hard to contain. www.namelessfestival.com.au

OPERA UNDER THE STARS Opera Under The Stars is presented in the lush tropical gardens of the Mangrove Hotel, overlooking the crystal blue flow of the water of Broome’s breath-takingly beautiful Roebuck Bay. The majestic ebb and flow of the water provides the perfect backdrop for this exhilarating opera experience. As twilight falls and the Kimberley night sky lights up with a flotilla of scintiallating stars, the scene is set for the Opera experience of a life time! www.operaunderthestars.com.au

CABIN FEVER FESTIVAL This winter, break up with your doona and visit the Margaret River region between July 19 and 28 for as much quality wine, seam-splitting comfort food, fireside brews and general good times as your body can handle. Experience chocolate, cheese and coffee appreciation, wine dinners, degustation menus, bonfires, brews, live music and more. For more info visit: www.cabinfeverfest.com.au

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AROUND THE REGIONS STA N DI NG TA L L fo r M E N TA L H E A LT H

Written by FLEUR CHAPMAN Images THE BLUE TREE PROJECT

B

old, brilliantly blue trees are appearing across our nation. From Wilgoyne and Mukinbudin, to Moora, Walkaway, Jurien Bay, Uduc and Williams in Western Australia, across to St George in Queensland and Young in NSW, a movement is growing. At last count, 150 trees have been given a ‘blue lease on life’, and each tells the story of both heartbreak and hope. These trees are part of what has become known as the Blue Tree Project, supporting those affected by the tragedy of suicide. The Blue Tree Project’s story begun in 2014, when Jayden Whyte and friend Tjarda Tiedeken decided to paint a tree on Jayden’s dad’s property in Mukinbudin. They had been working on the farm and found some old tins of paint, and loved the idea of a bright blue tree standing out in the landscape. It was painted as a laugh, a crazy moment between friends, but now symbolises so much more. Jayden tragically took his own life in November 2018. Tjarda shared the story of the blue tree at his funeral and from there, many of his family and friends decided they wanted to paint a tree blue in honour of Jayden too. Simon Comerford, Jayden’s best friend, was the first to paint a blue tree for Jayden on his family farm in Wilgoyne on Christmas Eve last year. He took a photo and R R R N E T WO R K

shared it on social media, and it went viral. “It was very unexpected and it was at this point when we knew we had to take this further and thus the Blue Tree Project evolved,” said Jayden’s sister, Kendall Whyte. “Before we knew it, there were people sharing photos of the blue trees they had painted for their own reasons. Whether it was in memory of a loved one or just helping raise awareness around mental wellbeing and helping create these visual reminders.” The Blue Tree Project is coordinated by Kendall and her sister Erryn Whyte, along with Tjarda, Simon and support from Simon’s sister Anthea. This simple idea is backed by national charity Beyond Blue and is making incredible headway in getting people talking about mental ill-health, and suicide in particular. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, suicide is the leading killer of those aged 15 to 44. In 2017, shocking statistics showed that eight Australians died from suicide each day, 75 per cent of whom were men. Over that same year, 65,000 people attempted suicide. These numbers bring into perspective just how crucial it is to do away with taboo and break down the stigma associated with illness that causes such despair. As Kendall reminds us;

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AROUND THE REGIONS STA N DI NG TA L L fo r M E N TA L H E A LT H

“These aren’t just numbers - they are people just like my brother Jayden.” The blue trees not only provide a handson project for a family or group to become involved in, but the finished products leave an eye-catching mark on the landscape, offering a waypoint for discussion as people pass by for years to come. Getting involved is as easy as choosing a tree (a dead one, so as to not damage it) and setting aside a day to get painting. “It may be a simple idea, but it speaks volumes to so many people. I think it’s because it’s so striking to see a blue tree in our natural landscape. It takes people by surprise and brings about curiosity as to why the tree is blue,” Kendall said. “Many people have said it has been a very cathartic feeling painting a tree and it has offered great conversation staters in communities and even on car trips with kids.”

IMAGES FROM TOP: Jayden; the Narembeen community painting their tree; kids getting involved in painting blue trees. R R R N E T WO R K

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AROUND THE REGIONS STA N DI NG TA L L fo r M E N TA L H E A LT H

project and awareness,” she said. The Blue Tree Project has seen a diverse range of people picking up a paintbrush and spending a day (or two!) painting a tree. So far sporting groups and youth groups, schools, coffee shops, families, health services and even hairdressers have joined the cause. “It has been phenomenal seeing such a diverse mix of groups and people painting trees. And I think this illustrates the effect mental health is having on our society. So many people have fought their own challenges and have been affected by suicide in some way,” said Kendall. “People have sent photos in sharing their own stories of their loved ones they lost. We have also had groups wanting to raise more awareness and create an environment where people feel safe to speak up and to reach out in their times of need.”

“I’ve already had the privilege of talking to some of the other finalists and it’s so nice to hear of what these people are doing in our great state. I feel very humbled to be standing next to them.” Moving forward, The Blue Tree Project will continue to grow, standing tall and making a difference to the lives of so many afflicted by illnesses no one sees. “I feel that with every newly painted blue tree I visualise Jayden’s cheeky smile. It’s very bittersweet seeing the project flourish, but knowing it has helped so many people already brings about a sort of healing effect.” If you would like to find out more, or register your own tree, visit www.bluetreeproject.com.au

For her tireless work in getting this project off the ground and bringing awareness to the issue of mental health in our community, Kendall was nominated this year for the The West Australian of the Year Awards in the youth category. This is a huge accolade not just for Kendall herself, but for the team, although not one they ever hoped for. “There was no doubt that I knew we were helping make a difference to so many people but I really didn’t expect to be recognised within such an award. It’s very humbling and bittersweet and I’m just glad that it will allow us to help spread our Jayden with his family

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AROUND THE REGIONS STA N DI NG TA L L fo r M E N TA L H E A LT H

The painting men of Mukinbudin

Jayden and Tjarda

Painting blue trees in Lake Clifton

Blue trees appearing on Albany Highway, Williams

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AROUND THE REGIONS A N I M A L S a n d u s ON T H E ROA D

SHARING THE ROADS WITH

wildlife

Written by HOLLY EDWARDS-SMITH with ANN GRAHAM, the Chair of Chittering Wildlife Carers Inc.

G

etting your license and having the freedom to travel where you want a is liberating. We are taught how to merge, who has right of way and things we should not do while in front of the wheel. Yet, there is so much many of us aren’t taught. Travelling beyond the cities and suburbs, the region’s roads become vastly different to residential streets. The speed limit is higher, the bitumen is not always maintained or of equal width. There are often less cars than you would find on a freeway, but quite frequently there holiday makers, caravans and transport

trucks ; including wildlife to contend with, providing new and unpredictable dangers that include the wildlife. Although it is not a thought many of us welcome and when cars and animals collide and we need to be aware of how to manage our vehicle for our own safety and be mindful of the steps you should take to ensure the safety of the animal, yourself and other drivers. A few tips have been listed below. For the full story please visit www.rrrnetwork.com.au

DON’T PANIC It seems obvious and one of those ‘easier said than done’ statements, but is important you stay focused. DO NOT SWERVE Although it is instinctive to turn away, there could be other cars coming at high speeds or animals and trees on the road side. Your safety is important, so the safest scenario is to slow down as soon as you can. BEEP YOUR HORN Scaring the animal is another good tactic to encorage them off the road. PULL OVER Only when and if it is safe. If you stop your car on the road it leaves both you and the animal vulnerable for another collision. For more information or advice, contact the Wildcare Helpline on 9474 9055.

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JOIN OUR A C C I D E N TA L COUNSELLOR WORKSHOPS

As part of our partnership with Lifeline WA to help raise awareness on mental health and build community capacity and resilience, we are running three Accidental Counsellor workshops in the month of July.

Mullewa The Accidental Counsellor one day workshop is ideal for people with no counselling experience who may find from time to time they assist people facing difficult issues or people with challenging behaviours. The workshop aims to equip participants with basic skills to guide these conversations sensitively and effectively.

10 July 2019, 9am - 4pm Mullewa Community Resource Centre Register: www.trybooking.com/BCNFD

Lake Grace 23 July 2019, 9am - 4pm Lake Grace Community Resource Centre Register: www.trybooking.com/BCMLF

What you will learn: • • • • • • •

A brief introduction to counselling theory How to identify a problem How to respond to difficult situations and/or strong emotions Roles that people play in difficult situations Core skills and strategies to promote change How to deal with particular personalities or scenarios Learn self care and boundaries

Merredin 25 July 2019, 9am - 4pm Merredin Community Resource Centre Register: www.trybooking.com/BCNFA

If you have any questions call 08 9261 4444 or email education@lifelinewa.org.au

For more information about the course visit www.lifelinewa.org.au/Education/ Testimonials/Accidental-Counsellor

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AROUND THE REGIONS DIG GI NG DE E PE R w i t h K A L G O OR L I E WOM E N

ROSIE BATTY

DIGS DEEPER with KALGOORLIE WOMEN Written by DAPHNE WHITE Images GLORIA MOYLE

L

ast month, women in Kalgoorlie celebrated International Women’s Day in the company of Rosie Batty, who travelled to the town and attended a number of local organisations and events. During her time in Kalgoorlie, Rosie met with community members, women who have or are experiencing family violence, students, incarcerated women and support workers, as well as key agencies working in the field of family violence in the Goldfields region.

Most people recognise Rosie Batty as the face of family violence change in Australia. Following her outspoken and unrelenting advocacy for victims of family violence, she was named the 2015 Australian of the Year. She was instrumental in the “Never Alone” campaign that led to a national change in conversation to put victims at the forefront of all decisions, and assisted to make key policy changes around family law and respectful relationships education. Rosie has recently reduced her public-facing advocacy work but continues to address and advocate for changes in our society with an aim to one day put an end to family violence. “When I first spoke with Rosie she was so very enthusiastic to maximise her time while in the Goldfields region, however I was mindful of overwhelming her with too many speaking engagements”, said Gloria Moyle, CEO of the Goldfields Women’s Health Care Centre (GWHCC).. Volunteers, staff and management committee of the GWHCC

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AROUND THE REGIONS DIG GI NG DE E PE R w i t h K A L G O OR L I E WOM E N “I was so very impressed at her authenticity and openness to be as accessible as possible prior to her main speaking event on the last night.” “Rosie was so delighted to be in Kalgoorlie-Boulder, from the minute she stepped off the plane she was so very approachable and I was so very impressed at her confidence. She was keen to speak with people in our community who have been affected by family violence or with those who work in response organisations.” Rosie first met with the Girls Academy students at Kalgoorlie Boulder Senior High School and talked about their experiences of family violence. “Rosie was particularly moved by these insightful and tenacious young women who are in high risk situations, have witnessed family violence growing up and some who are already experiencing family violence in their relationships and families,’’ said Ms. Moyle.

Gloria Moyle, CEO of the Goldfields Women’s Health Care Centre (GWHCC)

She also visited the GWHCC and the Goldfields Women’s Refuge where she had an intimate setting with the staff, volunteers and residents to share their family violence experiences and journeys to safety.

This was the first time Rosie had spent time with incarcerated women in a regional prison and learnt about their transition to community and how they are working to create better outcomes for themselves and their families.

Following this, Rosie spent time with the women at the Eastern Goldfields Regional Prison talking to the incarcerated women who are transitioning from prison out to community in the near future.

Rosie was the keynote speaker at the final engagement, the International Women’s Event, which was held on 20 March 2019 at the iconic Kalgoorlie Town Hall. This event was hosted by GWHCC, supported by the City of Kalgoorlie-Boulder and was a sold out event with 400 people attending. Rosie provided a passionate, inspiring and motivational speech around her journey. The Creative Director of Heartwalk: Art in the Heart of the Kalgoorlie CDB, and recently named Citizen of the Year Paula Fletcher, shared her inspiration on her grassroots public art project. Attendees were entertained by the delightful duo Mairia & Henri from the K7 Band.

was the key organiser of Rosie’s schedule for her Goldfields visit.

“For me, all the events have encouraged me and other women to chase their own aspirations”, said Ms. Moyle.

Rosie with the KGSHS Girls Academy students

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“I am thrilled that GWHCC were able to host Rosie and for her to see our local and diverse women who come from range of backgrounds. But we all have a common understanding of how family violence affects us and we can all have hope and aspire for a better life free of violence.”

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This is me

I am a grain grower and seller. A wife, mother & grandma. I'm also a gold and mineral prospector, a singer and a no-dishes cook. I've driven tractors, boom sprays and the air seeder. No motorbikes. I am a gardener and keen to work more with Indigenous grasses. Betty Heitman, Mingenew, Western Australia

Grain Brokers AUSTRALIA

www.grainbrokers.com.au R R R N E T WO R K

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CELEBRATING WOMEN GROU N D - BR E A K I NG R E GIONA L A RT S I N I T I AT I V E

Written by FIONA SINCLAIR Images DANIEL WILKINS

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egional women from Kununurra to Esperance are leading the way in a ground-breaking state-wide arts project, building a powerful legacy of positive impact for WA’s cultural industries. Female artists, curators, photographers and venue managers from seven of the state’s nine regions are pioneering a collaborative approach to enlivening and empowering their communities through a ‘first of its kind’ series of fourteen inter-connected exhibitions titled ‘The Alternative Archive’.

enhances community curiosity, vibrancy, and wellbeing.

Project Coordinator Fiona Sinclair, of Southern Forest Arts (based in the

metropolitan centres; the challenge for those living regionally is harder

South West’s town of Northcliffe) said: “Women from across the vast distances and diverse landscapes of regional WA have collectively scoped and developed this project of ambitious

It simultaneously builds the profile, capacity and sustainability of individuals and organisations within the regional arts sector as a whole. “The Alternative Archive is helping instil a new sense of optimism within the sector, and a healthy arts sector means healthier communities for regional WA,” said Fiona. “Sustaining a living from one’s creative practice is hard enough within still. By working co-operatively instead of competitively through The Alternative Archive, we are harnessing the power of our shared vision, talents and resources to bring about better outcomes for all. When artists

vision.”

win, we all win!”

“With one central unifying theme, written by Mundijong-based

Thirteen regionally generated exhibitions, each reflecting the unique

independent curator Anna Louise Richardson, the 14 exhibitions feature an incredibly disproportionate number of women in both management and creative roles. The numbers clearly tell the story that women are undisputedly integral to community vibrancy in regional WA. In this project alone, we have 21 female curators out of a total of 23, more than 20 female photographers from a pool of 26 and an estimated +85% female artists from a total of 150. I am without doubt in my belief that

personality of their local communities, are in development and/or display across seven of the state’s nine regions. These will culminate in a metro survey exhibition at at Curtin University of Technology in Perth during May 2020. “Artists are recorders of social history, the creators of cultural capital in any community and their creative output is central to understanding our sense of identity, place and community,” said Anna, author of The

women uphold the regional visual arts sector.”

Alternative Archive.

The Alternative Archive exhibition series reframes the way local

The first exhibition was launched by Minister for the Arts, the Hon. David

communities perceive their social contexts: unearthing stories that have been lost or kept hidden; retelling stories that had been forgotten or need to be told in a new way; and unveiling stories that have just been

Templeman, MLA for Peel,. The show is due on February 17th, 2019 at Contemporary Art Spaces Mandurah. The final show due later this year in Kalgoorlie.

born. Through this process of exploration and transformation, the project

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CELEBRATING WOMEN GROU N D - BR E A K I NG R E GIONA L A RT S I N I T I AT I V E

Female artists, curators, photographers and venue managers from seven of the state’s nine regions are pioneering a collaborative approach to enlivening and empowering their communities through a ‘first of its kind’ series of fourteen inter-connected exhibitions titled ‘The Alternative Archive’.

The Albany exhibition, The Alternative Archive – MIX, is the second

“Partnering with John Curtin Gallery has invested greater depth and

exhibition in the series and is due for launch on Friday 15th March at the

focus to the project overall,” said Fiona.

Vancouver Arts Centre in Albany. The show runs until the April 16th.

“We wanted to create new opportunities for regional artists and curators and having a nationally respected tertiary institution on board has

Additional presenting communities within The Alternative Archive

certainly done that.”

suite include Narrogin, Lake Grace, Esperance, Manjimup, Carnamah, Dwellingup, Geraldton, Broome, Karratha, Kalgoorlie and Kunnunurra.

With Anna and Chris touring to each of the regional shows, meeting

The survey exhibition will be held at the John Curtin Gallery in Perth

artists and curators and preparing their selection of works for the 2020

during May 2020. Co-curated by Chris Malcom (Director, John Curtin

survey, regional artists and curators will be further challenged to extend

Gallery) and Anna Louise Richardson (independent curator) the 2020

their practice within a supported context while enjoying the benefit of

exhibition will be a contemporary visual archive of regional Western

access to critical discourse about their work at a level rarely available

Australian arts practice, documenting a dynamic anthology of how

outside the city.

regional artists relate to the people, homes, towns or regions that they know so well. The showcase exhibition aims to increase understanding of

The Alternative Archive is an initiative of The Creative Grid, a state-

the arts ecology, the practices, and conditions of regional art making in

wide arts network formed within the pilot round of the Regional Arts

Western Australia.

Partnership Program supported by the State Government of WA and Country Arts WA. Mentorships for curators and photographers are central to the project and were made possible with support from the Australian Government through the Regional Arts Fund.

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CELEBRATING WOMEN GROU N D - BR E A K I NG R E GIONA L A RT S I N I T I AT I V E

ALANAH GRANT in front of her work

HELEN COLEMAN in front of her work

‘Belonging Through Play’

‘Materia Loci’

Contemporary Art Spaces, Mandurah Exhibition

Contemporary Art Spaces, Mandurah Exhibition

(February - March 2019)

(February - March 2019)

Image: Daniel Wilkins

Image: Daniel Wilkins

LYN NIXON in front of her work

PHILOMENA HALI in front of her work

‘Fragments’ (About the old Mandurah Bridge)

‘Canned Herring: A Bakers Dozen’.

Contemporary Art Spaces, Mandurah Exhibition

Contemporary Art Spaces, Mandurah Exhibition

(February - March 2019)

Image: Daniel Wilkins

Image: Daniel Wilkins

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Stories from the

LAND

Nic Duncan’s personal project ‘Lives Well Lived’ chronicles some of the inspiring characters she meets on her photographic journey throughout Western Australia. Written by FLEUR CHAPMAN images Nic Duncan

he saying “a picture speaks a thousand words” has never rung so true as with the candid, sincere work of photographer Nic Duncan.

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in South Africa. She worked for Aristotle Onassis, flying the who’s-who around Europe to opulent parties. I never thought I’d find myself in Denmark asking what Audrey Hepburn and Pablo Picasso were like!’’

Energetic and cheerful Veronica from Bruce Rock, captured with a wide grin and cheeky pose, surrounded by her much-loved craft supplies, her treasured cross at her neck and her eclectic book collection on display; Kellerberrin artist and designer Robert with his flamboyant but creatively engaging home that was once the town’s bank; 82-year-old mechanic Richard from Mukinbudin, with wisdom, experience and still a great deal of passion etched on his face.

She also recounts; “Others’ stories are poignant and stay with me long after the shoot. I photographed a beautiful lady recently who the community thought had never married. During our photo session she revealed that she had been married and had two sons. One child died at five weeks old, and the other was killed in a car accident aged five. She had ended up in psychiatric care and her husband had left her, both unable to cope with the tragedies. Even thinking about it now makes my heart ache.”

These characters are just a few in Nic’s personal project, titled ‘Lives Nic was drawn to photography from a young Well Lived’ that chronicles the age, each Christmas asking for just film past and present of some of the ‘‘...hearing their stories can be uplifting or and flash cubes for her vintage camera. She inspiring characters she meets in her heartbreaking but it’s always inspiring. I’m in was passionate about her art but indulged photographic journey, both at home awe of the resilience of so many of those I’ve in photography only as a hobby for many and as she sets off on a trip-of-ayears, capturing special moments with family photographed over the years,” lifetime around Western Australia and friends as she honed her skills and built with her husband Steve. This project upon her love for framing the perfect shot. serves as a spin-off from her first professional exhibition back in 2007, When she moved from Kalamunda to Denmark with her family in 2002, where she captured the diverse and unique histories of Denmark locals in it was time to turn that passion into her career as she found diverse a series of carefully-crafted images. opportunities for her work abounded. “Spending time with the oldies (I use the term with utmost respect and love) and hearing their stories can be uplifting or heartbreaking but it’s always inspiring. I’m in awe of the resilience of so many of those I’ve photographed over the years,” she said. “Some of the stories are impressive, such as the 90-year-old lady in a retirement village in Denmark who was the first female commercial pilot

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“I did wedding photography for a decade as well as portraits, commercial work etc - whatever I could do to make a living in a small town. There’s been some amazing opportunities through my photography over the years - I did some of the stills photography on the movie Breath when they were filming in Denmark, and recently worked on the ABC kids TV series Itch in Albany. The variety suits me.”

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WOMEN IN BUSINESS STOR I E S F ROM T H E L A N D This year, Nic and husband Steve have hitched up their camper and taken off on a “purposeful meander” through Western Australia. Nic has her camera by her side and is making the most of the experience, setting out to capture the essence of country life as they progress along their journey. Steve also creates images, but of a different kind as a GIS specialist and certified drone operator. With Nic’s land-based, personal touch and Steve’s experience in the skies, together they are set to chronical life in rural and regional WA like nothing ever done before. “Whether it’s a day in the life of a shearing gang on a sheep station, or an hour or two of windrow burning in the wheatbelt, I tend to photograph around regional and remote areas and hope to give an insight into that kind of life for those unfamiliar with it.” “We’re putting the word out that we’re coming through and hoping to do some storytelling and environmental portraits in country towns and farms or stations. I’d love to document what farm and station life is really all about - from mustering to cooking for a shearing gang; from home schooling to building up station stays…I’d love to get some portraits of several generations all still living on the same property too.” They have no set route and no predetermined timeframe, taking the time to get to know the locals in each town they pass through and learning about their unique way of life and heartwarming stories to tell. Other than a few calendar dates of special events, such as rodeos, field days, country music gatherings and other community events, the land is theirs to explore. So far, the couple has visited Lake Grace, Mukinbudin and Bruce Rock, where they caught up with fellow photographer De Strange and her family. The are now heading through Payne’s Find and Yalgoo, into station country, then onto Wooleen Station to reconnect with owners David and Frances after getting to know them at as the photographer at their wedding a few years ago. “I’d love to photograph some of the amazing women out there too I’ve been chatting to Jo Clews at Melangata Station and am looking forward to photographing her world later in the trip. And I’m always open to suggestions from those in the know.” After this trip, Nic is happy to continue with her meandering approach and see what unfolds. For now, she is embracing the opportunity of a lifetime, something she and Steve have always wanted to do, and fully immersing herself in her mission to bringing rural and regional life into frame for generations to come.

Images from top: Robert McCaffrey; Richard Spark; windrow burning.

Follow Nic’s journey through www.nicduncan.com . If you have ideas or inspiration for her project, she’d love to hear from you.

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WOMEN IN BUSINESS WA WOM E N M E A N BUSI N E S S

the

WILLY REGAN

story

Written by ELISABETH CHIEN images: BUSINESS LOCAL at RSM

W

“They might have to consider the added cost of freight and postage to regional areas, unreliable internet services, or buying or leasing a shop front with high rent prices with the additional knock-on effect of empty shops making small towns look like ghost towns.”

illy Regan loves living in the country. With half an acre in York on a property that backs onto a wheat and canola farm, she enjoys not living on top of her neighbours, having a native garden full of birdlife and even the odd visit from a kangaroo. As a business advisor supporting small business owners in the Wheatbelt and a passionate advocate for Indigenous women in business, Willy knows first-hand that living in the country can also make life challenging for women who are launching, running or growing their own business. “I’ve found many women in particular feel a lack of support from the metro areas to assist them with their unique challenges – and often they just don’t know where to look for help,” she said. Born in Bridgetown and raised in Perth, Willy ran her own café in Northam and later managed another café in the area. She then spent five years in radio working in sales and marketing for Southern Cross Austereo and was general manager of marketing at a regional station before she joined RSM Australia as a business advisor. Throughout her career, Willy has learned about the issues women in remote and regional areas operating a small business can face, from securing premises and licences to surviving business partnership disasters.

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“When I was a business owner, I learned a lot about what not to do,” she explained. “I made all the mistakes – and I learned that burying my head in the sand wasn’t the solution.” “In my job, I really love helping people and listening to their dreams and visions, then helping them put things into place to make it a reality,” she said. “I find many women who at first think that maybe they’re aren’t good enough, or qualified enough, or they’re not taken seriously because they’re female – but if it’s the right opportunity for them I encourage them to give it ago.” As part of her advisory role, Willy has helped women in a range of businesses, from yoga, floristry and dog-walking to shearing supplies, pest control and alpaca breeding. “No two days are the same. It’s so rewarding helping women who want to work for themselves and have the flexibility to support their family and lifestyle’’. RSM Australia provides free and confidential Business Local services in the Pilbara, Mid West, Gascoyne and Wheatbelt regions through the Small Business Development Corporation. For more information about Business Local services available in your area visit: smallbusiness.wa.gov.au

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Willy has learned first-hand about the issues women in remote and regional areas operating a small business can face.

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WOMEN IN BUSINESS OV E RC OM I NG GE N DE R BI A S

WHAT LIES SEIL TAHW Beneath the eht htaeneB FUN-HOUSE mirror? ?ror rim ESUOH-NUF Written by SARAH WOOLFORD, Corporate Grain Broker, Grain Brokers Australia.

U

nconscious bias is a term that sounds more like politically correct jargon that belongs in academia, yet it is alive and well in agribusiness and reducing Australia’s potential to compete globally. What is unconscious bias in plain speak?

"Every woman should be helping other women. I think there is a special place in hell for a woman who climbs the ladder and pulls it up behind her." And again, it’s not just women that are viewed with a distorted perspective.

In short, it is how we respond to people and situations based on the assumptions we

Recent research from the Movember

make. For example, during a Washington

Foundation revealed that one in five 18 to 24

trade mission, Melania Trump assumed the

year-old men wouldn’t have anyone to turn to

Honourable Julie Bishop, then Minister for

if they were going through a tough time.

Foreign Affairs, was someone’s partner and

Historically, young men in regional areas have

suggested she board a tour bus to see the city

instead view herself in a mirror that reflected

been groomed to be tough, play footy and

sights.

reality.”

enjoy a few beers, with an expectation they’ll

Closer to home, Avon Valley dealer principal

He also noted how pervasive unconscious bias

leave the young man with aspirations to act or

Leonie Knipe is used to having customers

can be as he observed Ms Graham’s career:

dance?

assume she is someone’s assistant. It’s

“Washington Post stock went up more than

heartening that she puts energy into workplace

4,000 per cent — that’s 40 for 1 — during

SO, WHAT DO WE DO ABOUT IT?

diversity and has a higher quota for female

Kay’s 18 years as boss. After retiring, she won

We can start our own fun-house of mirrors with

people than the industry norm and also

a Pulitzer Prize for her superb autobiography.

the following:

employs staff with disabilities. For her it also

But her self-doubt remained, a testament to

makes business sense as she targets female car

how deeply a message of unworthiness can be

1. Have someone remove names from CV’s

buyers for her market growth.

implanted in even a brilliant mind.”

during recruitment. That way you don’t know if

BIAS IS NOT A ONE-WAY STREET

WHAT IMPACT DOES THE “FUN-

It’s common when men join female-dominated

HOUSE MIRROR” HAVE ON

2. Test yourself and become aware of your

forums or awards events for the audience to

AUSTRALIAN AGRIBUSINESS?

own biases. There are plenty of free tests

have a little giggle as they are acknowledged as

We know that 30 per cent of the workforce

online including Project Implicit as designed by

brave or extraordinary for being able to sit on a

that delivered Harvest 2018 was female; yet

Harvard University.

chair in a predominantly female audience.

agribusiness boards have less than 15 per cent

take over the family farm. Where does that

the candidate is male or female.

women appointees.

3. Go towards your bias. If you identify your own personal bias towards senior men in

What is the true cost of those assumptions? Warren Buffet advised Katharine Graham, long

Di Smith-Gander, Wesfarmers director and

agribusiness, test it out. Many industry leaders

the controlling shareholder and CEO of the

former CBH board member, notes the bias can

welcome interest from those committed to the

Washington Post, “to discard the fun-house

come from other women as well as men. She

sector. Seek advice or volunteer for an agreed

mirror that others had set before her and

has advice for women who have made it and

project. You might be surprised where it will

those on the way up.

lead.

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When you compare Research, Agronomy and Technical Service Support Summit Fertilizers comes out way ahead

Tracey Hobbs Kellerberrin 0447 248 732

Brenna Gray Wongan Hills 0408 711 954

Juliet McDonald Coorow 0429 945 332

CBH GROUP PROUDLY SUPPORTING GRAIN GROWING COMMUNITIES. WA growers and their communities are the lifeblood of our industry. No-one understands this better than the CBH Group. That’s why every year, CBH invests more than $1.5 million to contribute to the vitality, development, wellbeing and safety of these regions. cbh.com.au PUBLIC Silo Trail Albany, 2018, Photograph by Bewley Shaylor

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Chloe Turner Kojonup 0447 469 245


ESPERANCE an abundance of extraordinary beauty Source and images TOURISM ESPERANCE INC Instagram image @THEPLANETWONDERS

EXPERANCE FORESHORE

Often described as: “Out of the way, out of this world”, Esperance is located in the GoldfieldsEsperance region of Western Australia, on the pristine Southern Ocean coastline.

There are few places in the world where a five-minute walk from the centre of town can bring you to the beach…. The Esperance waterfront celebrates our glorious coastline by linking the foreshore to the townsite, setting the scene for a fabulous holiday destination. Follow the walk and bike paths toward Castletown and the Tanker Jetty Precinct, and you will stumble across the James Street Precinct. This area is a key part of the waterfront, providing an “all-abilities” playground for younger children, picnic shelters, gas BBQs, shaded areas, seating with ocean views and landscaped lawns and facilities. Wander the picturesque pathway to the very tip of James Street headland, or take your photo in front of the iconic Whale Tail sculpture by local artists: Cindy Poole and Jason Wooldridge.

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A PLACE OF EXTRAORDINARY BEAUTY

Esperance hosts an abundance of extraordinary beauty in some of the world’s best beaches and pristine coastline. An Esperance summer offers incredible weather. Autumn that provides stunning, calm days which are perfect for exploring National Parks and walk trails. Winter marks the start of whale season, with whales often spotted frolicking off our shores with their young, while the wild flower season is in full bloom during the spring months - the best time to explore the colourful floral scenery of our region. Treat yourself to one, or all of these fabulous locations.

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TRAVEL & ADVENTURE E SPE R A NC E A n a bu n d a n ce of ext ra o rd i n a r y be a ut y ROTARY LOOKOUT - DEMPSTER HEAD WALK

HELMS ARBORETUM

A perfect 360 degree views of the land and seascapes and various coastal walk trails. Featuring several species of flowering eucalypts, dryandras, twining clematis, Australian bluebell, fringe lilies in early summer, pimelea, agonis, and hakea.

A mammoth reserve where large expanses of natural bushland are accessible by gravel roads. There are hundreds of named plantations containing Western Australian trees, as well as Australian species from other states and exotic pine species. There are many opportunities to indulge in photography, bird watching, picnicking, trail walking, pine cone collecting, or to simply relax under the pines and enjoy the blissful plantation.

GREAT OCEAN WALK - CYCLEWAY

Deep sand, elevated limestone headlands, sheltered dunes and exposed heaths provide wonderful vistas of seasonal natural flora. Described as the best walking trail in Australia, ride or walk between the town centre and iconic Twilight Beach to appreciate the sweeping vista of splendid coastline and natural flora.

PRISTINE BEACHES

Arguably the best beaches in the world. Nowhere else can you savour endless stretches of easily accessible beaches that boast the brightest, whitest sand and crystal clear turquoise waters. A hidden treasure at the bottom of a winding staircase, is a beach known as Blue Haven. The protected and tranquil waters make this beach a favourite for swimming. Take in the spectacular vistas from the viewing platform on your way down and you can bring your pets here too! Twilight Beach is a short drive from town, a family beach with snow white sands that is home to the iconic “rock with the hole in it�. Patrolled by surf life savers during the summer weekends and frequented by the ice-cream van, it is suitable for surfing, paddle boarding and snorkelling.

Nowhere else can you savour endless stretches of easily accessible beaches that boast the brightest, whitest sand and crystal clear, turquoise waters. Esperance Bay Yacht Club

IMAGE: Michaela White - Donkey Orchids just east of Condingup

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INSTAGRAM @melscottyy

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WHY WE CRAVE

Close-Knit Friends

Published with the permission of JEAN HAILES FOR WOMEN’S HEALTH

Learn why we crave close-knit friends, how to have micromoments of connection with friends and strangers alike, and steps you can take to improve and expand your friendship circle.

F

“We can have many connections around us, but if those connections aren’t meaningful – if they’re not based around emotional intimacy, developing trust, giving back and connection – then they aren’t going to be that effective anyway.”

riendships aren’t just about having people to share experiences with. As psychologist Caroline Anderson explains, friendships are crucial to not only our mental, emotional and overall health, but fulfil an innate human need, too.

So, rather than thinking about quantity, focus on the quality and variety of your friendships, says Ms Anderson.

Learn why we crave close-knit friends, how to have micro-moments of connection with friends and strangers alike, and steps you can take to improve and expand your friendship circle.

“Think about the strength of your connections. The types of friendships are important too. Friends can play different roles in our lives and we can have different friends for different kinds of relationships.”

HOW MANY FRIENDS DO WE NEED FOR GOOD MENTAL HEALTH?

If good friends are so important to mental health, it begs the question: do more friends mean more health? The internet is awash with what Ms Anderson refers to as ‘pop psychology’, citing a so-called magic number of friends to aim for. “You’ll often read that having 3 to 5 friends is a nice amount. But I think it’s as simple as having one close connection,” she says.

DEEP CONNECTIONS + DEEPER SLEEP

From deep friendships to mates (and workmates) that you share good times or a funny story with, the importance of human connections in life is in fact no laughing matter. According to Ms Anderson, having close bonds with people actually fulfils a deep evolutionary need. “If you think about our evolution as human beings, we are really designed to

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be in social groups,” she says. “[As part of a tribe] we could hunt larger amounts of food that we couldn’t do by ourselves. We could build better shelter, have better protection from predators. “Today, we have these huge societies and very complex social networks, but that desire to still have a close-knit community around us for our safety is really important.” So crucial are these connections that, according to some researchers, the human brain evolved with a clever protective mechanism which kicks into gear when we’re socially isolated. Even today, this mechanism can affect the sleep of lonely people, according to one study. “In this particular study,” explains Ms Anderson, “the participants who described themselves as lonely had more of what’s known as ‘micro-awakenings’ in their sleep.” Micro-awakenings are small moments in which you wake up mid-sleep, but don’t remember; just short snippets of time


WELLBEING JEA N HA ILES for WOMEN’S HEA LTH where you rise a little from your slumber. “The theory behind this link is if you’re lacking social connection and support, you don’t feel safe when you’re going to sleep,” says Ms Anderson. “If something bad were to happen in the middle of the night, there’s no one out there to protect you. “Early humans literally weren’t safe when they were asleep and away from their tribe. So, [if you’re lonely], your brain won’t let you go into a full sleep mode.” LIGHTEN YOUR MENTAL HEALTH LOAD

As well as potentially getting a better night’s sleep, one of the more obvious mental health benefits of friendship is simply having someone to share your dayto-day life with, says Ms Anderson. “The process of just being able to say things out loud, in itself, is an incredibly healing and therapeutic thing to do,” she says. “Sharing your experiences, thoughts, feelings… your ups and your downs. “Then there’s all the fun stuff that comes with having friends – being able to engage in activities together.” For those struggling with depression and/or anxiety, giving a voice to what you’re going through can bring particular benefits, says Ms Anderson. “A really important intervention [or practice] that I do with my clients is slowly encouraging them to have the strength and courage to open up to their friends about what they’re going through,” she says. However, sharing mental health struggles “can be one of the most challenging things to even contemplate” for some, says Ms Anderson.

“My clients often say, ‘Yeah, I’ve got these friends around me, but no, I could never tell them that I’m seeing a therapist or that I’m struggling with depression or on antidepressants’,” she says. “In all honesty though, it can be one of the most powerful things that happens. When they do start talking about their mental health issues, a lot of the time their friend will say ‘I’ve had that too’, or ‘my mum/my friend has gone through something similar’. “So it really normalises these issues, to be heard and supported, even if the friend just listens and does nothing else, can be incredibly powerful.” SOCIAL MEDIA VS SOCIALISING

With so many connections taking place on social media these days, do we still need to spend time with friends in reallife to get the benefits? Absolutely, says Ms Anderson. “There is a small connection that happens over social media. You can be in the loop about where people are or what they are doing, for example, but in terms of a benefit to our wellbeing, it’s the faceto-face connection that really makes a difference.” IMPROVING SOCIAL CONNECTIONS

If you’re feeling socially isolated, there are some simple yet effective ways to improve and expand your friendship circle. “The first approach is to broaden or strengthen the relationships that you already have,” says Ms Anderson. “Start small. Look around at the people already in your social structure. Ask yourself: who could I do more things with, or have more connection with? Who could I message, who could I catch up with for a coffee?”

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Once the social meet-ups or activities are happening, the next step often involves making the connection between you and the other person more meaningful. A final piece of advice from Ms Anderson is to practise connecting with people in micro-moments. Micromoments are short connections that you can experience with anyone: friends, colleagues, strangers, even people who you may never see again. “You might be at work and talking about what you did over the weekend. These types of conversation can sometimes feel really superficial. But if you put in some effort and bring some authenticity to conversation, it can feel really heartwarming and genuine.” In terms of the benefits of micromoments, Ms Anderson refers to the interesting work of American researcher and psychologist, Barbara Fredrickson. “What she found was that these micromoments can actually regulate your heart rate and release a burst of the feel-good hormone, oxytocin.” “So even if you have no one around you, no close friends, you can have a genuine connection with the cashier person at the supermarket. Stop, make eye contact, ask them how their day has been. “In our busy world it’s something that we forget to do. Just stop and realise the positivity and warmth that comes from general human connection.” For the full article, please visit: www.rrrnetwork.com.au More information can be found at: www.jeanhailes.org.au


REGIONAL PRODUCE W E ST E R N AUST R A L I A N BE E F

Produce to T

he Ablett family recently celebrated 80 years on their Cowaramup farm

and Leanne’s two adult sons are the fourth generation. Dairying until 2007, the

PLATE

Abletts now run Angus and Murray Grey breeders. MSA vealers are turned off in summer, receiving MLA’s Most Outstanding MSA Beef Producer (grass fed) for WA in 2017. In 1999 Leanne represented WA at the National Farmers Federation Young Farmers Forum in Canberra. She was Junior Vice President of WAFarmers Dairy Section and coordinated the Women in Dairy leadership program around the same time. She has also pursued an off-farm career and is now HR Manager at Margaret River Hotel. Leanne and husband Shane are looking forward to semi-retiring in a few years, with eldest son Jack nipping at their heels and telling them how to run the farm already!

Leanne Ablett, winner of the MSA Excellence in Eating Quality Most Outstanding Beef Producer award for WA with some of the family’s Murray Grey and Black Angus cattle. https://bit.ly/2X4314Q

W

estern Australia has a herd of approximately two million head of beef cattle distributed throughout the state. For the past five years the WA

beef herd has remained relatively stable. Over half of the WA beef herd is made up of breeding cows and heifers with the remainder comprising of bulls, steers and calves. WA’s herd is distributed between the northern and eastern rangelands and southern agricultural regions. The state’s herd is almost evenly distributed 50:50 between the rangelands and agricultural regions. Properties in the southern agricultural region tend to be smaller in size than the pastoral region with many being mixed enterprises with cropping and livestock. These properties operate with higher stocking rates due to more reliable rainfall, longer growing season and better quality forages. Source: www.agric.wa.gov.au

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BEEF & CHILLI BEAN SOUP

A winter warmer by Margaret River beef farmer Leanne Ablett

INGREDIENTS

IN THE POT

THE THERMOMIX METHOD

1 tablespoon oil

Heat oil in a heavy saucepan over medium

1.

1 red onion, chopped

heat, cook onion until soft, add the garlic,

2 cloves garlic, chopped 2½ tablespoons chilli flakes 2½ tablespoons cumin seeds / powder 2½ tablespoons fresh coriander, root + leaves chopped 1½ tablespoons ground coriander 500grams beef mince 400gram tin chopped tomatoes 400gram tin red kidney beans - rinsed and drained 2 litres beef stock PLUS fresh coriander and natural yoghurt to serve

chilli flakes, cumin, fresh and ground corian-

speed 6 2.

der and cook to warm through.

Sauté 3 min Varoma speed 2

4. Add mince, cook 10 min 100c

tomatoes, beans and stock and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for

Add oil, spices, chilli and coriander root

3. Add beef mince and cook through, add

Chop peeled onion and garlic 3 sec

Reverse speed soft 5.

15-20 minutes, or until reduced.

Add paste, tomatoes, beans and stock

6. Cook 5 min 100c Reverse speed Enjoy with fresh coriander and a generous dollop of natural yoghurt.

soft, or longer until piping hot 7.

Serve with coriander leaves and natural yoghurt


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regional and remote women to support and contribute to the economic and social wellbeing of their communities. The annual membership fee is $220. Members over the age of 18, who have paid their membership by the 30th June, can nominate for a position on the RRR Network Board (also known as the “committee”, as detailed in the Constitution). Members receive discounts on events, training and invitations to member-only

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Blue Tree Project is an initiative to raise awareness around mental wellbeing after the tragic loss of Jayden who took his own life after being released from hospital twice in the one day. More needs to be done to help people with mental health issues. Stronger support is needed to better equip our professional health system so we can better help people like Jayden, who were brave enough to seek help. For more information and to give your support, we invite you to visit: ​w ww.bluetreeproject.com.au

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IMAGE Australia’s South West Frances Andrijich KOOMAL DREAMING R R R N E T WO R K

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SECTION E DI TOR I A L SU BT I T L E OR DI SC L A I M E R

T

HE RURAL, REGIONAL, REMOTE WOMEN’S NETWORK OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA ACKNOWLEDGES THE AUSTRALIAN ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER PEOPLES OF THIS NATION. WE ACKNOWLEDGE THE TRADITIONAL CUSTODIANS

OF THE LANDS ON WHICH OUR COMPANY IS LOCATED AND WHERE WE CONDUCT OUR BUSINESS. WE PAY OUR RESPECTS TO ANCESTORS AND ELDERS, PAST AND PRESENT. THE RURAL, REGIONAL, REMOTE WOMEN’S NETWORK OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA IS COMMITTED TO HONOURING AUSTRALIAN ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER PEOPLES’ UNIQUE CULTURAL AND SPIRITUAL RELATIONSHIPS TO THE LAND, WATERS AND SEAS AND THEIR RICH CONTRIBUTION TO SOCIETY.

S O U R C E : w w w . c r e a t i v e s p i r i t s . i n f o /a b o r i g i n a l c u l t u r e /s p i r i t u a l i t y / w e l c o m e -t o - c o u n t r y - a c k n o w l e d g e m e n t- o f- c o u n t r y IMAGE: Frances Andrijich Margaret RiverR region Koomal Dreaming 47 www.australiassouthwest.com R R N E- T WO R K WIN T ER 2019


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e have a proud 21-year history of supporting and celebrating Western Australian women and their families who live and work outside of the

Perth metropolitan area. In 2016 the RRR Network transitioned from a WA State government advisory board to an independent incorporated entity. Our focus is every woman living in a rural, regional, or remote community in Western Australia. We have a subscriber base of over 10,000 individuals, businesses and community organisations who receive this quarterly glossy magazine from us and an active social media following.

WA’s pre-eminent communication network for inspiring & connecting regional women; championing their role in our communities and advocating on their behalf.

Profile for RRR Network WA

RRR Network Quarterly - Winter 2019  

RRR Network Quarterly publication is WA's pre-eminent communication network for inspiring and connecting regional women; championing their r...

RRR Network Quarterly - Winter 2019  

RRR Network Quarterly publication is WA's pre-eminent communication network for inspiring and connecting regional women; championing their r...