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Happy to help spread the word in Calwell & Waniassa. Vibrant communities are good for business. That’s why at Bendigo Bank we like to get involved in the community in many different ways – like supporting The Word. Yet because we’re no experts at developing local publications, we’re more than happy to lend our support in other ways.

So if you’re looking for banking products and financial services for yourself, your family or your business drop in and see us at Shop 19 – 21 Calwell Shopping Centre, Webber Crescent, Calwell, phone 6291 3385 or Unit 13 – 14 Wanniassa Shopping Centre, Sangster Place, Wanniassa, phone 6231 9024.

Bendigo Bank Limited, Fountain Court, Bendigo, VIC 3550. ABN 11 068 049 178. AFSL 237879. (S14686) (03/07)

Proudly supporting the National Folk Festival I&D11877

ACT Branch P: (02) 6267 1599 F: (02) 6249 1247 E:

National Folk Festival

Meet the Raiders players after every home game at The Tradies @ Dickson

For the information of members and their invited guests.

5 -9 April 2007 Exhibiton Park Canberra 02 6249 7755

The Tradies @ Dickson Home of the CFMEU CANBERRA RAIDERS 2 Badham St, Dickson ACT 2602 Phone: (02) 6162 5656 I&D11877

The WORD Newspaper ABN 44117238105 PO Box 2126 Tuggeranong ACT 2901 Phone: (02) 6292 9061


Website: Publisher - John Hancock Graphic Design - Leonie Van Ash Advertising - Ashley Hughes

When Second life was originally released mid-2003 it was an interesting concept but its uniqueness came from the fact it integrated a lot of commonly found features into a massively multiplayer experience. Four years later and the graphics are looking even blockier and the character animation is very limited and artificial. Having said that, there is a huge amount of customization you can do to your character and it is remarkable what the ‘residents’ have done with their new world. Many have started new businesses, and most revolve around virtual clothing stores, virtual real estate, casinos, and ahem, ‘adult’ services. The in-game economy, where real dollars are exchanged for ‘linden’ dollars which can be used to buy or rent a piece of land, upgrade your characters threads, gamble, or nudge, nudge, wink, wink, say no more! It seems like the games diminishing popularity is forcing the marketing people to hype the game up, although according to the developer, there are still well over 1.7 million active residents (players) who traded over $US1.5 million in the last 24 hours (at time of writing). While Second life’s key marketing message is that it is an alternate reality experience, many games have relied upon generating virtual

Allan Geddes‘Running’

persistent worlds which immerse the player. The notorious Grand Theft Auto series has been so successful because it seamlessly integrates a realistic setting of a dysfunctional city complete with several radio stations and DJs, a day-night cycle, traffic, and people with different behavior and reactions to the player. World of Warcraft is a massive multiplayer online roleplaying game (MMORPG) with currently over 8.5 million players immersed in its fantasy universe. Players say the immensity and artistic quality and the fact you are playing other people, rather than a computer, add an unpredictability and freshness that keeps the game compelling, even addictive. So the technological ability to make immersive, interactive alternate realities exists but has anyone seen a pair of “virtual reality” headsets recently? The amount of VR hype in the 1980’s made us all believe that this technology would be commonplace, revolutionizing everything from town planning to education. Unfortunately it didn’t happen for a number of reasons. The headsets and gear were too heavy and the computers not powerful enough. These days however things have changed. The average computer is many thousands of times faster and games have been the key technology drivers behind the development of high quality real time graphics. Now virtual reality users can either use gear that is much more lightweight or take advantage of external visualization installations which can emulate a 3D environment without the need for headsets. To properly simulate an alternate reality there needs to be an interface between the machine and the brain to enable normal interaction with the environment. In 2001 the Japanese National Institute of Science and Technology Policy (JNISTP) predicted that by 2015, primitive neural interfaces would enable users to transmit commands to VR simulators. At the beginning of March 2007, Emotiv, a company headed by two Australians, unveiled a helmet which can control a player in a game by detecting the electrical activity generated by brain cells. The interface helmet, developed by former Young Australian of the Year and Emotiv president Tan Le and her partner Nam Do, can also detect facial expressions and emotions of users for possible use in game or simulation. There are a couple of other barriers to consider. Firstly, immense, realistic virtual worlds require the creation of a massive amount of highly detailed 3D environments, buildings, objects and plant life. Progress has

been made in the development of automated systems to process objects from real life into digital versions but there is no substitute for talented 3D artists and animators when it comes to creating imaginary worlds, which are the most popular escapes in the gaming world. Secondly, the software required to simulate a realistic environment doesn’t yet exist. Most cutting edge game engines used to power games running on high-end computers or next-generation consoles such as the Xbox360 or PS3 have high-definition graphics, some form of physics simulation, network support, sound, simple artificial intelligence and interactivity. Generally game programmers only build the features they require for the current game into an engine, because the amount of work required to produce an engine with full-range interactivity that a true VR system requires is monumental. Is any of this relevant to Canberra?

Guess which city is home to a group of leading developers and one of the three top game companies in the world?

Micro Forté’s spin-off, Bigworld, offers game engines for developers of Massively Multiplayer Online Games that are fast becoming the industry standard. Irrational Games is one of the world’s most critically acclaimed games developers and is currently working on some of the most anticipated titles for release in 2007. Simmersion has developed a revolutionary simulation solution that allows users to simulate real or imagined world environments with incredible realism, context and geometric accuracy. Simmersion is currently building a 3-D simulation of Sydney for sale to councils, developers and property agents and is contracted by the ACT Planning and Land Authority to model the entire city of Canberra. So when it all comes together will we all be immersed in liquid goo and permanently jacked-in to the network, the Matrix? It’s unlikely. The cost involved in the technology

setup and the need to sustain these worlds through real-world funds will mean that they will continue to be temporary escapes, much as many games and movie experiences are to us today. One thing is very clear: the amount of virtual environments, immersive interactivity and 3D visualization will increase, with the promise of much more to come, as will the demand for skills in these areas. Study 3D! The Academy of Interactive Entertainment was created to support the establishment and development of the 3D animation, games and creative digital media industries in Australia. Recently Simmersion, Micro Forté and Irrational have all employed AIE graduates from both the 3D animation and games programming streams to support the strong growth these companies are experiencing. But it’s not all about games and visualisation. AIE students were recently visited by AIE graduate Robert Byrne, who talked to Diploma of Screen students about some of the projects he has worked on since completing his studies. Robert’s latest project was working for Sydney studio, Animal Logic, on the academy award winning Happy Feet. Robert was heavily involved as Senior Lighting Technical Director on Happy Feet, and led a small team of specialists to create the stunning lighting effects used throughout the project. An experienced artist, Robert has also worked on other feature films such as Scooby Doo with Photon VFX and various projects for Animal Logic. Robert spent more than an hour with AIE students, giving them some valuable insights into creating their portfolios and concentrating their studies to specific areas that interest them, such as lighting, animation, rigging or modelling. See

CIT and AIE continue successful relationship

By Tanya Henshaw The Canberra Institute of Technology and the Academy of Interactive Entertainment (AIE) recently re-signed their highly successful relationship for another two years. CIT has been collaborating with AIE for the past nine years in offering ACT and regional students high quality animation programs. The joint CIT/AIE programs have enjoyed great success over the years, with graduates now placed in many local,

the ACT can use co-operation to win for students and the community’. Locally graduates from these programs have enabled growth in a range of emerging creative digital content companies including SimUrban, Eye Candy 3D, Catalyst Interactive, GeoScience Australia and Department of Defence. The AIE recently had success with CIT Diploma of Screen students working on ‘The Story of Ned’, Artword by Simon Cottee a Tropfest top 16 finalist. AIE off ers CIT backed qualifications Gibson, said ‘This is a welcome continuation in Screen and 3D Animation. of a partnership widely regarded nationally For more information on these and internationally as best practice. It is a courses, go to great example of how a small city state like

Inner North businesses provide a small spark for families. B Y J U D Y E LT O N


Invest with

confidence You want to secure your future and know prospering through property is an option. But you’re unsure you have enough deposit or financial strength and don’t know where and what to buy. So you don’t act. The reality is there are options for moving forward, even without cash or the time involved in becoming an expert in property. It’s important that you buy right, however, and use an agent who works for you. At Property to Prosper we work for buyers, not sellers. We’re not tied to one developer, set of listings or geographic area. We also have access to attractive properties not yet advertised, providing you with an ‘inside edge’.

ParentLine calls on businesses

to 2,000 as word of mouth spread, and volunteers raised over $3000 for charity and community organisations. This started out as a small spark for families with young children which has rapidly turned into a big community event. ‘Our surveys showed people mainly came for the music and the community atmosphere, and they came back because they enjoyed themselves so much. We wanted to help families see that having fun is really easy’, said Jane Goffman. Following this success, ParentLine invites businesses in the inner north to support more Small Spark initiatives. Your help could include:

for a raffle, or a sausage sizzle in front of your business. - Free service: such as photocopying/printing, book keeping, IT support, or meeting space. - Advice and information. And the benefits of being involved? Small Spark can be another low cost way of moving your business closer to your customers and the things that matter to them. To offer a small spark,

please contact ParentLine’s - Publicity: community noticeboards, Small Sparks Project Officer, signs in your window, information Judy Elton, on 62873833. table outside your business - Discounted or free goods or a donation - Help with fundraising: such as prizes

Please! Guantanamo pleas...? Posted by: Maddy Taylor on: 14/03/2007 at: 01:18 PM Tags: 9/11 , usa , terrorism So, good ‘ol Guantanamo Bay Justice has nailed the one guy, The Mastermind, responsible for 9/11 and a pile of nasties against America “Mohammed, a Pakistani national, also said he was responsible for a 1993 attack on New York’s World Trade Center, the bombing of a nightclub in Bali, Indonesia, and an attempt to down two American airplanes using shoe bombs.” If they’d pushed harder, might Mohammed also have confessed to Cyclone Katrina? How can an obviously flawed, disgraceful pandora’s box like Guantanamo Bay possibly think the world will take any of their prisoner ‘confessions’ seriously. Points for Mohammed though, at least he got his trial... Mohammed looks like he could do with a good sleep now.

Hicks’ hickup Posted by: David Toyle on: 28/03/2007 at: 09:35 AM Tags: usa , confessions , justice , guantanamo , america , legal Well the big wheels are turning Maddy. Guantanamo is under some pretty intense international spotlights and they’re pulling confessions like a dentist digging diamonds. Who can blame Hicks and his legal team for giving those soldier boys a slither of saving grace in exchange for a just trial back in Australia. The US Army doesn’t need to concern itself that the world is laughing at their pathetic whitewash of justice, they are trained to look within. Egos in tact, they’re sending our boy home. Today there remains a question mark on Hicks’ guilt. There can be no question about the behaviour of the officials of Guantanamo Bay.

We currently have on our books positively geared three-bedroom townhouses in a boutique complex, located in an area benefiting from strong capital growth. In another fast growing area we have entry point properties from $285K (a fiveminute walk to a hospital and schools) and house and land packages by a nationally known, reputable builder. Another opportunity is for threebedroom townhouses close to a major shopping centre, convenient bus interchange and park reserve. These and other opportunities aren’t available through the regular real estate circuit.


ant to learn more? Call or attend one of our upcoming free seminars (ask us for dates). In addition to our property expertise, you’ll learn from others on mortgages, conveyancing and accounting.

April 2007 Issue No. 29

from the inner north of Canberra to help link families with kids under five with the community. ParentLine’s Small Sparks Project is part of a team effort with Northside Community Service, ACT Playgroups, Barnardo’s, Campanion House, YMCA Canberra, the YWCA, plus many voluntary and small community agencies in the inner north to build Communities for Children. The scheme is part of the Australian Government’s Stronger Families and Communities strategy. How can your business provide a small spark in the inner north? A recent community/business partnership in the inner north has been the aquaCulture Nights at Dickson pool in January, sparked when Jane Goffman (of Active Planning) and a group of mums saw an opportunity to create a local event that would be fun for families with young children. Jane worked with pool managers who supported the idea of live music and fund-raising on Saturday nights, and agreed to keep the pool open later. Attendance figures of over 1,000 by the third night in 2006 demonstrated the event’s popularity, so this year funding from the North Canberra Community Council and Tradies made it possible to hire clowns and circus performers, and offer a wider range of foods. Attendance doubled



national and international film, television, games and production studios. Graduates have worked on many of the worlds largest animated film productions, such as the academy award winning Happy Feet and TV shows such as David Tench Tonight and the Shapies. Dr Colin Adrian, Chief Executive of CIT said “CIT is delighted to continue such a valuable relationship with the AIE. It allows the CIT to continue to offer animation programs that satisfy an important and growing industry here in the ACT, nationally and abroad.” AIE Chief Executive Officer, Mr Ian



Blowing up Australia


May/June will see Australia host the largest military exercises we’ve ever had in peacetime - Talisman Sabre 07. B Y D AV I D B R A D B U R Y Guam to drop their live payload from 5 kilometres high on Delamare bombing range near Katherine NT and live fire exercises involving many Abrams tanks rumbling across the landscape at Bradshaw tank range (surrounded by Bradshaw national park south of Darwin, target practising on country against the wishes of the senior Aboriginal elders, custodians of that country...). These military exercises and their coordination in both states will be beamed live via satellite from tiny cameras on the tanks, bombers, landing craft, army commanders’ lapels etc to the coordinating War Room at Newcastle where the US and Australian generals will call the shots Troops and sailors will take place in of what is fired next. Son of Star Wars has bombarding our shores and fragile landscape, arrived in Australia! storming our beaches, gunning down I don’t know how you feel about that, but ‘terrorists’ in the newly built urban guerrilla I am still disgusted that Australia supports warfare training centre, testing their latest the US so sycophantically in this bullshit laser guided missiles and ‘smart’ bombs in War on Terror. Our unholy crusade at the some of the most pristine wilderness I’ve latest count had 653,000 innocent people ever seen on this planet - and in 30-years of in Iraq killed-even if its half this number comprehensively and methodically counted making films, I’ve seen a lot of this planet. Idyllic Shoalwater Bay near Rockhampton number, its still a national and immoral will cop it all - live aerial bombing, ship to disgrace that we have lent our name and shore naval firings, underwater depth charges support to such a huge number of innocent exploded in areas where turtles and dugong people murdered in our nation’s name. breed, nuclear subs using high level sonar Next year’s Talisman Sabre exercises are a frequency which zaps the hearing of sea life con for blatant continuing militarism of and mammals, nuclear aircraft carriers inside a similar vein post Afghanistan and Iraq. the so-called Great Barrier Reef marine We are now about to pollute our own most national park(!), land based artillery firings pristine areas, far away from the centres of population by letting the US military test blasting the hell out of areas where the most amazing their latest weapons here. There are big plans by British Aerospace biodiversity in Australia is to be found. Shoalwater Bay covers 740,000 hectares and and the other arms manufacturers to quietly is almost unique in our climatic landscape turn the depressed Rockhampton area into because it is a cross over point for tropical, a big arms manufacturing industrial estate. sub tropical and temperate zones giving rise So not only will we export our soldiers who are the best there is to to an amazing variety of many species of flora and wildlife, birds, sea adventurist wars overseas, we are about to see an explosion in Australia manufacturing creatures etc). Anyone who has seen Al Gore’s film has to and exporting weapons of war. ask why are we allowing such madness to Not particularly drawn to military phrases, take place and wanton misuse of resources we have to ‘draw a line in the sand’ and to further add to the huge level of CO2 put say when ‘enough is enough’. It’s time my friends, to stop this madness and our up into the atmosphere in exercises such as these at a time when we all should be complicity in it. combining forces in the War for Our With a view to oppose these exercises, a group of people from around Australia Survival. These live munitions actions at Shoalwater with peace activist credentials had a phone Bay will run simultaneously with US link up and spoke for an hour about our bombing runs by Stealth, B1 and B52 willingness to combine forces and oppose bombers (just one B52 bomber carries 30 these exercises. tonnes of bombs -needs three semi trailers We plan to put on a big concert at Yeppoon 22/09/2006 12:41:13 PM to load it up with its bombload...) from and have people come from all over Australia to take part in that concert and choose, if they wish, to be part of non violent actions to oppose the war and Australia’s involvement in such wars. Through my contact with musicians like Paul Kelly, Midnight Oil (friends from University days), John Butler, Deborah Conway, Robyn Archer, Kev Carmody and actors Judy Davis, Geoffrey Rush, Sam Neill, Bryan Brown, we intend to put on a big concert which will spill into the evening with relevant films and speakers to raise awareness of just what Australia has “The field training portion of Talisman Saber 2007 will be conducted 19 June – 2 July 2007, with force preparation and deployment of forces 12 -18 June 2007. Current planning shows indicative Australian forces likely to participate are 20 ships, 25 aircraft and 7500 personnel. Indicative US forces likely to take part are 10 ships (including a carrier Battle Group), 100 aircraft and 9000 personnel. Personnel and aircraft numbers include those embarked in ships, however, the number of personnel involved in Talisman Saber 2007 will fluctuate according to operational requirements throughout the exercise.” From Department of Defence

signed up for with this new secret treaty then Defence Minister Robert Hill and Foreign Minister Alexander Downer signed with Rumsfeld and Powell back in July 2004. It is that secret treaty which is allowing the Americans to come here and do what they want –without so much as an environmental impact study being done before or after the exercises. We need people in communities right along the eastern seaboard to be actively involved in this campaign to build awareness amongst your local communities and to take on the role of being local coordinators as the campaign builds over the next six months, to help with the logistics of organising people to come by bus, peace train, cars, planes to be there in June for that concert and weekend leading into week of actions. Some people with work or other commitments will only be able to come for a few days, perhaps the weekend. No matter. We have to send a BIG message to the rest of our apathetic and many indifferent Australians and the government that this is not on any more. Please look at this website and subscribe to it to keep generally informed of what is happening, how to link up people in your localcommunity if you want to help make this peace convergence a BIG event. www. If you would like to be part of the actual organising please email Dimity Hawkins from MAPW (Medical Association for the Prevention of War)- dimity.hawkins@ and ask her to put you on the list for organising. That way you will be told when the next national phone link up is happening and other important info to let folks in your respective communities know over the coming months as we seek to build awareness and a ‘buzz’ about being at the Talisman Sabre peace concert etc. But we want people who will DO, not just talk about it. Okay, thanks for reading this and taking it on board hopefully in a world where we all have incredible demands on our time and stress.

Support needed

April 2007 Issue No. 29

The Peace Convergence is only 11 weeks away and we are still in urgent need of funds to assist in the various campaign costs such as venue hire, material production, promotional costs, transport etc. All involvement in organising the Peace Convergence is voluntary. This June will see Australia host the largest military exercises we’ve ever had in our peacetime history – Talisman Sabre 2007. We are reminded of the horrors of war as we reflect on the fourth

anniversary of the Iraq invasion which has turned into a daily nightmare of bloodshed and sectarian violence. We cannot continue to ignore the daily mayhem our government has helped make in Iraq nor our inadvertent complicity in making that land a toxic and cancerous wasteland. Howard’s determination to turn one of Australia’s most pristine and biodiverse environments – Shoalwater Bay near Rockhampton – into a US military training ground and testing site for their latest weaponry must be stopped. Away from the media and with no Environmental Impact Study needed before or after the war games, l4,000 US troops along with over 12,000 Australian personnel will work together in the name of ‘improving interoperability’ to hammer the living daylights out of our coastline. In the Northern Territory, US Abrams tanks and B52 and Stealth bombers will drop thousands of tonnes of live bombs on the fragile landscape against the wishes of the traditional owners. We refuse to turn a blind eye to what is being done on our own native soil, all in the name of refining the so-called War on Terror. You can lend your support by coming to Shoalwater Bay in June 18-24 and concert in Brisbane on 16 June, joining a local peace group who are working on raising awareness about the war games and/or making a donation to the Peace Convergence.

Please considering making a direct deposit to: Brisbane Anti-Bases Coalition Bank: Members and Education Credit Union, Ltd. (MECU) BSB: 803140 Account Number: 23154672 Legal Support Account Number:23154671 (If possible, please inform us if you deposit money directly.) Or send a cheque made out to” “Brisbane Anti-Bases Collective” PO Box 5829 WEST END QLD 4101 For more information visit www. Mobile: 0432 563967

Quota’s “Shrinking Violets” downsize for Cancer Members of the Canberra Quota Club batted the bulge for a good cause at the end of March. 16 of its 21 members entered the Relay for Life to raise funds in a fun and worthwhile way through sponsorship to lose weight. If you would like to chip in, please contact Hope Steele, Fundraising Manager, Cancer Council ACT on 6291 9328 Quota is an international service club committed to friendship, fellowship & fun. Funds are raised to support ACT

Quota weighs in for Cancer Council

Community projects, primarily focussing on the hearing impaired.


You take the high road Brigadoon at Bundanoon BY ALISTAIR SAUNDERSaunders

This year Brigadoon will have the honour of launching the new Australian National Tartan, the brainchild of Mrs. Betty Johnston of Canberra. Spectators are treated to a spectacular Massed Pipes and Drums display of highland music, one has really got to be there to appreciate the sheer magic of the occasion. At the Oval there are over 130 specialist stalls, selling everything imaginable, from Scottish pies to shortbread, from Clan memorabilia to souvenirs, even the Scots favourite Haggis! Everyone is made most welcome at the gathering and


Admission: Adults $15, Child $5, Family $35, (2 adults + 2 children). Further information contact 4883 7471 or Email

Youth Week A lot of noise about cashed up! aircraft noise BY STEVE WHAN

This is the second year all 152

There has been a lot of noise of late about flight-paths, with both sides to the argument taking out decent advertising campaigns to sway public opinion to their favour. Yet ask the average bystander, and most have little idea what it’s all about. Aircfaft noise will become a sad fact of life for north Canberra, Queanbeyan and Tuggeranong residents if the proposed suburb of Tralee goes ahead, according to Canberra Airport’s General Manager, Stephen Byron. “At the moment, 99.5% of Canberra and Queanbeyan’s 135,000 homes are completely protected of aircraft noise,” he said. The only homes affected at the moment are 600 in Jerrabombera which are directly under a flight-path. Canberra airport hopes to move this flight path to the rural corridor of Tralee, making Canberra and Queanbeyan 100% aircraft noise free. Quenbeyan Mayor Frank Pangallo argues that Tralee should be developed in order to provide Queanbeyan and Jerabombera residents better school and sporting facilities. However without the use of Tralee as a residential-free flight-path, aircraft noise would differed to Canberra. An independent planning inquiry set up last year by NSW Minister of planning Frank Sator concluded that houses should not be built at Tralee due to aircraft noise and should instead be built at Googong, which will give 25 years worth of land supply to the Queanbeyan region. The Queanbeyan Council is currently dealing with three separate applications for residential growth, one of which is in Googong, said Mr Pangallo. The Council would like for both the Googong and Tralee proposals to go ahead, but

acknowledge that Googong is a more long-term option and is quite a distance away from the flight path. Mr Pangallo argues that there is no conclusive evidence that Tralee should not be residential, however the airport claims his developers are relying on a 1998 planning strategy that identified the land for “urban” development, but not residential. This same strategy also stated residential areas should not be built under flight paths. “There is no question that Canberra and Queanbeyan can grow,” said Mr Byron. They can both double over the next 30 years or more, without building one house under a flight path. And I think that should be a given, not an aspiration.” Whatever happens, it is safe to say that a great deal of investment dollars are at stake here and both sides have deep enough pockets to put up a lasting fight.

Bilingual families By Mandy Scott Canberra Region Bilingual Families has recently been formed by a number of local parents who want their children to learn to speak their family language as well as English. The aim of the group is to build a support network to help families access information about bilingualism and share practical advice about raising children bilingually. The group had its origins in a forum held at the University of Canberra entitled ‘When English is not enough: a forum to discuss raining children bilingually’. Over 90 people attended. They included speakers of Italian, Norwegian, Swedish, French, German, Vietnamese, Dutch, Sinhalese, Greek, Japanese, Spanish, Cantonese and Mandarin Chinese. According to the 2001 ABS census, over 13% of the people living in the Canberra region speak a language other than English at home. Canberra Region Bilingual Families believe that maintaining and developing languages in bilingual (and multilingual) families in Australia can play an important part in promoting social cohesion as well as preventing the loss of an important national resource. Possible activities for the future include

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April 2007 Issue No. 29

Councils across the State will host Youth Week activities and we are making real progress in supporting young people to be the very best they can be. With almost $240,000 being allocated to Councils across the State this year, Youth Week 2007 is set to be an exciting week for young people in NSW and I am very pleased that young people from our community have the opportunity to be involved. Young people who would like to get involved in organising or participating in an event during Youth Week should contact their local Council, or visit the Youth Week website at www.youthweek. . Youth Week activities encourage young people to raise issues of concern to them and suggest ways of addressing these issues, show their talents and have fun. Young people play a vital role in our local community and it is important we acknowledge their valuable contribution and help them achieve their goals. This year, Youth Week will be celebrated from 14 to 22 April with the theme ‘Launch Yourself’. This is an opportunity for hundreds of young people from the Monaro area to be involved in creative activities such as live music, film festivals, forums, debates and sporting activities. By working with the support of local councils young people will be able to organise events and activities that are relevant to our local community. Last year, thanks to the Iemma Government, 152 Councils and 18,000 young people across NSW worked together to organise around 1,000 events for more than 170,000 young people.



In the beautiful but rugged area of the Southern Highlands in New South Wales, lies the village of Bundanoon. This village over the past 29 years has gained the envious reputation throughout Australia as the Premier location for hosting the traditional Scottish Highland Games. Bundanoon is a comfortable 2 hours drive from Sydney, 1.5 hours from Canberra and the South Coast, which makes it the ideal location for travellers who just want to pop in for the day or for others who wish to stay and enjoy “Brigadoon” and the hospitality and culture of the Southern Highlands. “Brigadoon” begins with the sound of bagpipes drifting across the village from first light in preparation for a day of celebration. All roads lead to Bundanoon or so it would seem as the village waits in anticipation, The opening ceremony begins on Saturday April 28 at 10.30am on the oval, officially opened by the Chieftain of the Day who in 2007 will be the Rt. Hon Mrs Helen Lawrie Liddell, British High Commissioner to Australia.


encouraged to participate in the “Traditional” and not so “traditional” games. Spectators can try their luck at “Tossing the Caber”, “Shot Putt”, “Haggis Hurling”, Kilted Races”, “Egg Throwing” and Water Toss. There is also a Bonny Bairns highland dress competition. The main event of the day is the display of strength the Tartan Warriors competing to lift the “Bundanoon Stones of Manhood”; there are 5 stones of incredible weight ranging from 100 to 165 kilograms. This really is a wonderful contest of physical


Don’t leave our destiny to chance BY STINA KERANS



Climate change is just one of 4 major world trends that will affect everyone. Al Gore, states the case that, environmentally “Each passing day brings yet more evidence that we are now facing a planetary emergency”. It maybe easy to be lulled into powerlessness, numbed by distractions and/or exhaustion, or be seduced by the material world into greed and comfort. But our world has been built on the toils, wars, suffering, sacrifice and efforts of our forefathers, who sought a free and liberated world. Today we are facing a new frontier, where we are not being asked to give up our safety or our comfort and march to drums with guns.

Today, what we do need to do, is create a unity in direction, with knowledge, so as to divert undesirable outcomes. So you are being Call to join a movement that has 4 levels of membership. The first level is just for those that have seen the Power Point Presentation, “Our Place: Knowledge and Action” which outlines the 4 big global trends (climate change being 1) and then 4 local action strategies, that can assist into being, a world of ‘social and ecological’ stability within ONE generation. Knowledge and unity maybe important for each of us to have, especially if we hit an economic or environmental crisis! The launch of this movement is at the National Folk Festival, in the Global Warming Tent on Friday 5pm 6th April and is available on

ACT Cricket hits some special sixes!

World Vision child sponsorship campaign in Woden World Vision is Australia’s largest overseas aid and humanitarian organisation. With the support of around 400 000 Australians, World Vision helps over 12 million people every year. As well as providing relief in emergency situations, we work on long-term development projects with local communities to address the causes of poverty and help them move toward self-sufficiency. Information stands will be present in Westfield Woden between 16 and 22nd April 2007. World Vision staff will be on hand to provide information, advice and resources to the public about World Vision and its programs, particularly Child Sponsorship. Come and seize the opportunity to sponsor a child living in poverty and help improve the longterm chances of an entire community. More information email au or visit

Canberra’s mop up We all knew businesses that took the brunt of Canberra’s recent storm. Many are just getting back on their feet, some are months away from

Davide Green keeps wicket as Daniel Brown prepares another boundary! ACT Cricket Chief Executive Officer Mark Vergano said he was delighted with news Special Olympics ACT Region had expanded its program of sports offered to local people with an intellectual disability to include cricket. With a Come and Try Cricket day held last month, Special Olympics ACT Region have added a tenth sport to their program.With popular sports such as swimming, athletics and ten pin bowling already in the program, cricket has been included to fill a growing niche. “Special Olympics has been a fantastic organisation in meeting the needs of the disabled community to encourage participation in a variety of sports which cricket is pleased to join “ACT Cricket is pleased to be able to assist Special Olympics in progressing cricket for adults and children with an intellectual disability”, Mr Vergano said. Special Olympics is a not for profit organisation that offers sports training and competition for adults and children with an intellectual disability. Children as young as 8 can be involved in the program. Discos and dinners are also held monthly which gives athletes and families a chance to socialise. If you are interested in getting involved in Special Olympics or want more information, call 6230 1069 or email

opening their doors. The Word wishes all these businesses a speedy recovery and offers those that can demonstrate damages $250 worth of advertising when ready.

Jimmy mops out the Phoenix bar, while a taxi driver outside contemplates alternative routes to his next job... Photos by Phil Howeison

The rela tives hav e arrived u nannounc ed….

April 2007 Issue No. 29

The Embassy Canberra

can provide comfortable and quality 4 star accommodation in a great location at a reasonable price! With 8 FOXTEL channels and 3 in-house movie channels there is plenty of entertainment for all or surf the net with our high speed internet access available in all rooms. And if you are looking for a great place to start the day off then drop in to our Roundabout Restaurant any day of the week and sample one of the best breakfasts in town! Call us today and let us help you take care of the friends, family and relatives!

Phone: (02) 6162 7200 Fax: (02) 6281 1843 Email:

Export-led growth for Canberra



In Canberra’s now predominantly private sector economy, exports are increasingly driving our growth. Development of an export culture isn’t surprising, given Canberra’s strong international orientation as Australia’s national capital and the strong and extensive work of the Australian Government internationally in both policy and operational work. That policy work has included working with the governments of our trading partners to reduce barriers to entry and open their markets to Australian products and services. Since the mid 1980s, this has seen the development of highly successful partnerships between Australian Government and business to grow our national income from overseas trade. And the contribution of Austrade to the development of local businesses succeeding as exporters in the face tough international competition has been huge.

It’s pleasing the see the ACT Government also engaging in an increasingly effective partnership with local exporters, working alongside them at they move into fresh markets to help overcome official indifference and to open doors into new relationships with customers and business partners. This kind of partnership between government and business is far more important in overseas markets than many people at home realise. Business people in other countries tend to accord significantly greater respect to the position and stature of visiting government ministers than we’re used to doing in Australia. Hence the significant role that successive ACT Chief Ministers and other political leaders have been able to play in support of local businesses opening up overseas markets. The present Chief Minister, John Stanhope, was particularly effective in his leadership of the recent ACT Trade Mission to India. He paved the way for numerous introductions to Indian

business leaders that would not have happened if the ACT businesses had not had such visible and official support in the person of the Chief Minister. We ought not to underestimate the value of governments working in partnership with local businesses. The participants on the Trade Mission to India are now busily engaged in following up their contacts and the business leaders are very appreciative of the role the Chief Minister played. Those who are planning to be in the forthcoming trade mission to China need the same support and are looking forward to the Chief Minister working with them as the leader of Team ACT. The bottom line for the community is that growth in exports from the ACT creates additional jobs in the ACT, as well as bringing new skills into our economy. It ensures our companies operating overseas are operating at world best practice. This high standard flows back to local operations, so increasing

Family business and succession planning BY CHRISTINE VINER

Design: Add Apt Graphics

the same core considerations: • Family business members should be encouraged to express their individual wishes and expectations in an environment

• All relevant family members need to agree on the Succession Plan – if everyone cannot agree on a plan within their family, consider using the services of a specialist advisor who can assist with bringing the family together, mediating difficult issues and helping to draw up the succession plan.

More information on Succession Planning for family businesses can be obtained from visiting the Family Business Australia website on

Do you work with your family? This Conference is for you!

Learn how to overcome significant challenges & lay the foundations for a better, stronger family business. If you only have time to attend one Conference this year - this is the one! The program focuses on overcoming challenges faced by your business, keys to handling extraordinary growth and strategies for mentoring the next generation of the family business.

Family Business Australia’s ACT & NSW State Conference Thursday, 10 May 2007, Sydney Convention Centre Family Business Australia is a not-for-profit organisation serving family businesses throughout Australia.

For more information

phone: (02) 9593 0814

or email:

April 2007 Issue No. 29

Family owned businesses can be found in all shapes, sizes and industries. In many ways the family business is like any other business in that it provides products or services, has employees and generates revenue. However, the family-owned business stands unique in one respect – its principals and many employees also share a family relationship. This family relationship fosters bonds and behavioural patterns that inevitably carry over to the workplace and as a result this overlap and the intertwining between family and business interests and concerns can create special issues which exist only in the family business environment. One such issue, and one of the most important considerations for family businesses, is that of Succession Planning. A 2003 study* into Australian Family and Private Businesses found that although 32% of family business owners want their business to remain a family business, only 25% of owners have sought professional Succession Planning advice – figures which support the tendency for many to put it off because of the time and effort involved in reaching the best solution.

The ACT Branch of Family Business Australia (FBA) – a member-based, notfor-profit national network of owners of family business’ and advisors - says that despite every family’s situation being different, the solution to working out a Succession Plan actually comes down to

which is open and constructive. • Trust and confidence should be respected by all individual members. • Short and long term objectives of the business need to be looked at and balanced against the needs of the family. • Future issues and challenges for the business need to be anticipated where possible – and allow for flexibility. • All possible options for the business should be investigated including ownership succession or management succession, taking into account the implications and consequences for each option.

competitiveness even of those businesses that are not exporting. The general increase in business activity also flows back to the community through increased GST returns that go to pay for our facilities and services, such as schools, hospitals, parks and all the other things that are paid for from the ACT Government’s revenues. So our growing export culture benefits all of us. On another matter, as foreshadowed in the March article, the Council’s paper on the taxi shambles has been submitted to the ACT Government and is now posted on the Business Council’s website at Dr. Neil Primrose chairs the Action Agenda Co-ordination Group of the Canberra Business Council and its kindred organisations.




Business and Bird Flu B Y B O B C R AW S H AW



Last October Australia’s biggest health emergency exercise tested the country’s preparedness for H5N1 bird flu. Exercise Cumpston 06 involved over 1000 people from Commonwealth and State Governments and other organisations. It provided a glimpse of what could happen if bird flu arrived in Australia. The Federal Government has committed $555 million to ensure Australia is prepared for a pandemic and the Brisbane exercise went some way to measuring how well that money has been spent so far. Pandemics are not new. There have been three outbreaks in the past 88 years. The Spanish Flu in 1919 stretched our health infrastructure and claimed around 11 500 Australian lives. The 1957 Asian Flu pandemic is thought to have caused two million deaths worldwide and the global death toll from the 1968 Hong Kong Flu reached around one million people. In today’s globalised, interconnected economies if bird flu reaches the point where it is transmitted from human to human, it is likely to travel fast and far and no country can assume it will be immune. The 2003 SARS epidemic showed how a communicable disease can impact on business. Australian companies can look to the Canadian SARS experience to see how a health threat can complicate commerce. When SARS hit Toronto in June 2003, it left 43 people



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April 2007 Issue No. 29


dead and totally consumed the efforts of the City’s 7000 healthcare workers. It also rocked the local economy. I was in Toronto that summer and saw tourist numbers plummet, entertainment districts empty and retail sales slump. At the time the Canadian Broadcasting Commission reported the damage to Canadian tourism at $519 million dollars and 5300 lost jobs. Based on what happened in Canada, if Australia is hit by bird flu, tourism, travel and retail are the most likely sectors of the economy to suffer. If a pandemic really took hold current forecasts suggest that worker absentee rates could reach 30 – 50 per cent. This would leave many companies with minimal staffing, an uncertain supply chain and serious doubts about their ability to continue to trade. In the past 12 months the PR industry in the US has been focussing on how American companies should communicate during a bird flu crisis. The Public Relations Society of America and the International Association of Business Communicators have both featured the topic in detail in recent journals and conferences. And, in November the Public Relations Society of America hosted an online conference to prepare corporate communicators for pandemic threats. US thinking suggests good business communications will be vital during a pandemic. It will be just as important as any health measures companies are forced to adopt. Talking clearly and effectively to workers, customers and suppliers - without hype or creating panic - will be critical to continued trading.

Free listing for your business Disability ACT and the Citizens Advice Bureau are currently undertaking a joint initiative in developing a new online ACT Disability Services Directory. The new directory will be a fully searchable database, which will provide easily accessible information to people with a disability, their family, carers and support agencies, with regard to disability services in Canberra and its surrounding region. Disability ACT and the Citizens Advice Bureau would

But US thinking also indicates that a major challenge is persuading companies to prepare a communications response before a health crisis hits. Many executives still remember the unfulfilled dire warnings surrounding Y2K and regard the bird flu threat as Y2K with feathers. So what does this for Australian companies? To beat bird flu, businesses: • Must have the people, tools and know how in place to clearly communicate with their workforce, customers, suppliers and regulators before a crisis hits. • Staff communications will be particularly important as employees grapple with concerns for their own health and the wellbeing of family and friends. • The marketplace will need reassurance that businesses will continue to manufacture, supply and deliver and can trade through any crisis. The PR planning underpinning the Australian Government’s bird flu strategy seems carefully thought out and thorough. But along with government communications business must also be prepared to communicate. The companies best placed to survive a pandemic will be those that plan early and communicate often. Bob Crawshaw is a member of the International Association of Business Communicators and a Director on its Asia Pacific Council

like to invite local businesses to be a part of this valuable web-based resource. The businesses we seek are those who “go that extra mile” by providing for people with a disability, for example wheelchair accessible cafes, restaurants, hairdressers and health providers. The listing of accessible businesses will be free of charge and will assist people with a disability and their carers in finding ‘disability friendly’ businesses in our local area. We can be contacted for information on this new venture at the Citizens Advice Bureau. Contact: Kaye Dudderidge on 6257 1687 or email:

New training opportunities Under an arrangement with the ACT Department of Education a series of courses are being conducted to assist emerging, new and existing small business owners and operators. All of the courses run through a small business networking group will result in successful candidates receiving a Statement of Attainment toward either a Diploma or Certificate IV. For more information about these courses contact Will Lewis on 02 9420 4322 or 0430 296245.

Women succeeding in business

Businesswomen- WIN

1 year’s CWB membership!

The Chamber of Women in Business and The Word are offering two local business women a rare chance to win a membership of the Canberra Region’s premier women’s business organisation. The Chamber of Women in Business (CWB) provides networking and development opportunities for businesswomen in the Canberra region. As the only association focusing on businesswomen’s needs, the Chamber offers members a supportive environment that fosters their business growth. The Chamber presents networking and education events every month. Check out our April event “Grow the Show – PR Expo” on our CWB website.

Competition details:The first two women to phone the CWB office on 6282 6255 and answer the following question correctly will win a year’s CWB membership:

“How many CWB members are listed in the ‘Financial Services’ section of the Members Directory on the website” Good luck – hope to see you at our next event!

Governments are in business BY NEIL PRIMROSE

Do you have available funds to place into super? Seek advice as soon as possible to save tax and meet the 30 June deadline B Y D AV I D B O U C H E R

Vanzwan Accounting Plus Pty Ltd PO Box 330, Belconnen ACT 2616 Unit 2, Level 1, 80 Emu Bank Belconnen ACT 2617

on the basis of this advice, you should consider how appropriate the advice is to your particular investment needs, objectives and financial circumstances. *$150,000 per person aged 65 and over, who meet the Work Test (per financial year), or $450,000 averaged over 3 years for those under 65. This applies to posttax (non-concessional) contributions made into a super fund.

The $1million dollar limit currently available includes post-tax contributions made into super from 10 May 2006 – 30 June 2007.

Telephone: 02 6251 4888 Facsimilie: 02 6251 4865

By Adrian Makeham-Kirchner Chicken little is alive and well. A message we seem to hear repeatedly is that young people can give up on the idea of purchasing a home. We don’t believe that the sky has fallen in just yet on home ownership. To help first home buyers (FHBs) on the way we want to share details about available incentives, true purchase costs, some finance tools and offer a method to genuinely asses your ability to pay. FHBs can access government incentives to partly relieve the burden of funding a home. The most obvious is the FHB grant of $7,000 available to those who have never owned residential property in Australia. Other incentives are targeted at reducing the cost of stamp duty. There is an ACT scheme to reduce stamp duty but it is inadequate for most FHBs. The scheme includes a means test and an asset test. These tests mean if you choose a property above $330,000, or if your household income is above $100,000, you will get no relief. In contrast if FHBs look across the border to NSW they will discover a much better scheme. The NSW option has no means test and provides a concession on stamp and mortgage duty for properties up to $500,000. The difference on a $350,000 property would be $12,250 in the pocket of the FHB if they chose NSW! These incentives are critical because purchasing property has additional expenses of 4-6% of the price. These costs include stamp duty, nuisance taxes, legal and loan costs. Incentive schemes can wipe out the bulk of this cost. Financing a deal is relatively straightforward for eligible FHBs. The key issue is the expected loan to value ratio (LVR). While you can borrow 100% or more of a property’s price, there is a direct link between high LVRs and high mortgage insurance (LMI). For example if you were to finance 100% it is likely you would be charged a once off fee of 3%+ to cover the insurance. This means without a good incentive scheme FHBs may borrow 100% of the price, but will still need access to nearly 8% of the property price to cover costs and LMI. There are literally hundreds of products suited to FHBs. While it is tempting to go straight for 100% or more, LMI issues mean it is easier to access finance if you have 3% or more for a deposit. This can be in the form of savings, loans, gifts or other liquid cash. If you genuinely cannot raise some funds there are alternatives that allow you to use a relatives home as security or more recently there is an option where you can enter into an arrangement with a bank to share the future value of a property. If you don’t want to risk it just yet you can get into the habit of repaying a home loan. Initially you can assess how much you might need to borrow for a house you would like to buy. Then use an online loan calculator to work out the repayments. Subtract your current rent from this figure. If you can save the difference for at least 3 months, then you are on the way to gaining the discipline required for home ownership – with a bonus of three months savings to contribute to a future purchase! If you need to know more we suggest taking ‘commentators’ thoughts with a grain of salt and having someone review your specific circumstances. It is possible to purchase a home with a bit of discipline, a level head and serious forethought. 1800 180 800 or 02 6284 3577


April 2007 Issue No. 29

If you want to build up your super and save tax, you have a once in a lifetime opportunity to contribute up to $1million dollars of post-tax money into super – but you only have until 30 June this year. From 1 July 2007, the level of money you can place into your super fund (post-tax contributions) will be limited to $150,000 per financial year*, potentially restricting the amount you will be able to save for your retirement. After this time, if you go over the $150,000* limit, your contributions will be taxed at the highest marginal tax rate 46.5%! Wayne Byrne, an authorised representative of Count Financial suggests now is the time to consider placing greater amounts into your super fund to minimise tax and save for retirement. Seek advice if you have funds available from: - The sale of a property, business or other investments; - An inheritance, windfall or payout; or - Any surplus money. If you are waiting on funds from a sale, you may also be able to borrow money over the short-term to place into super to meet the 30 June deadline – seek advice on your situation.

For further information, Wayne may be contacted at Vanzwan Accounting Plus at 80 Emu Bank Belconnen or on 02 6251 4888 Wayne Byrne is an Authorised Representative of Count Financial Limited, an Australian Financial Services Licence Holder (No. 227232) and Australia’s largest independently owned network of financial planning accountants and advisers. The advice provided is general advice only as, in preparing it, we did not take into account your investment objectives, financial situation or particular needs. Before making an investment decision

The First Home Decision


Whether political leaders and public administrators know it or not, they’re all in the business of growing Canberra and the Capital Region. And a business that’s not growing is in decline. We are in tough competition with innovative and entrepreneurial regional cities, such as Geelong, Newcastle and Wollongong whether we realise it or not.. We’re in competition for people, investment, cultural and sporting fixtures, infrastructure, quality of lifestyle and all the things that go to make one city a location of choice for people and businesses. And Canberra lags well behind. Our population base is too small to sustain the amenities and lifestyle to which we’re accustomed. We’ve lost our AFL team. We’ve lost the women’s tennis championship. We’ve lost the Australian Ballet. We’re losing our youth. Our public infrastructure is getting ragged and we can’t afford to maintain it. Notwithstanding the current commercial building boom and the impressive building program by the Australian Government, we have below average population growth and our municipal services under increasing strain. And we can’t be complacent that the current boom will last for ever. It’s not the norm. And let’s not get caught up in a barren debate on marginally fluctuating numbers. We have a problem – let’s turn our minds to solving it together. Canberra, with the Capital Region, needs growth for its longterm health as a vibrant community. The basis of growth is more people and more jobs. At this point in time it is simply more people to fill the jobs we already have. Certainly, growth needs to be well managed for our future to

be sustainable. But we must have it. And “well managed” doesn’t mean the detailed official control of a centrally planned economy. It means partnership between governments and the wealth creators, in consultation with a wise community. Which may sound idealistic. But our city is still small enough and smart enough to achieve such partnership and to be a leader in designing a postmodern democracy. At the moment, the biggest impediment to growth is the increasing contradiction between the old style of detailed government control and the burgeoning private sector economy that is the driver of our export-led economy. Old mindsets about raising public revenue are forcing up house prices, creating tensions with our neighbours in the Capital Region, restricting our ability to fund public infrastructure and hampering investment in new products and services. Those businesses that succeed in Canberra do so in spite of the prevailing “control mind set”. Much committed and earnest work is being done by our governments, but we are lagging behind our competitors – our governments’ competitors – because we are stuck in the mindset of the past. We urgently need a robust public debate among serious people about: • population growth; • the role of government in partnership with the private sector; • a different approach to raising revenue for the ACT; and • different approach to the funding of government services. The Canberra Business Council, with its kindred organisations, is preparing a series of position papers and public forums throughout this year to address these issues. The first of these is on the taxi shambles. This is crippling Canberra’s reputation as a place to do business. It’s a major problem for Canberra residents. The position paper is soon to be published on the Business Council’s website at www.canberrabusinesscouncil. Dr. Neil Primrose chairs the Action Agenda Co-ordination Group of the Canberra Business Council.


By Andrew Macintosh Drugs policy is a vexed area that arouses There are currently five Liberal members, strong emotions. People see drug users and four ALP members and one Democrat, fear the unknown. The traditional response and the Committee is chaired by Senator from politicians, particularly conservatives, Ian Macdonald, the former minister for has been to exploit these fears for political The community forum on the drug “Ice” fisheries and conservation. gain. The outcome has been an over reliance held in the ACT Legislative Assembly recently Despite the cross-party composition of on law enforcement as a means of stamping provided more than 100 community members the PJC, its report was not received warmly out both the supply and use of harmful with information about the drug and its effects. by the Government. The Parliamentary drugs. Part of the ACT Standing Committee Secretary for Health, Christopher Pyne, In 2003, the federal House of Representatives on Health and Disability’s inquiry into went out of his way to hose down Standing Committee on Family and the drug “Ice”, the forum included a panel suggestions the Government should Community Affairs looked into drug of four experts who provided attendees refocus its efforts towards harm reduction abuse and produced a report that was in with information on a variety of issues. and harm minimisation. He stated in the keeping with the history of drug policy. Dr Alex Wodak from St Vincent’s media that ‘we’ve spent $1.3 billion on the Although the report included some Hospital, Sydney, spoke about the chemical Tough on Drugs strategy and now is not worthwhile recommendations, it called for components of the drug and usage trends. He the time to be showing weakness in the the abandonment of harm minimisation as also discussed services available to users but face of the war on drugs’. the principal objective of the National Drug explained the difficulty in finding a solution to The House of Representatives Standing Strategy. its abuse because there was no legal substitute Committee on Family and Community The Committee wanted prevention to “Ice”, such as methadone is to heroin. Affairs has also launched another drugand abstinence-based treatment to ACT Mental Health’s Christine Waller related inquiry, seemingly to counter the be the focus of government policy. discussed the mental health consequences recommendations made by the PJC. And This position is associated with partially reflected “Ice” use and the in the Federal impacts the drug G o v e r n m e n t ’s can have on a user’s ‘Tough on Drugs’ mental health. Ms policy. Penalties Waller explained have been increased the importance of for drug offences, using de-escalation funding has been techniques, calming increased for drug a user during a law enforcement, the psychotic episode. Government has run The ACT’s Chief several prevention Police Officer Ms campaigns based Audrey Fagan on dramatic images highlighted the of the dangers work the AFP was associated with drug doing in targeting use and money has people who were been directed to at an early stage of abstinence-based drug abuse. In the treatment services. majority of “Ice” All the while, seizures the purity harm reduction of the drug was and other treatment between 84 and 86 services have percent. In some remained chronically cases however the under-funded. drug was of a poorer Given this history, The damages of even short term use of the drug Crystal Methamphetamine potency, meaning the recently released report on amphetamines users needed to increase their dosage to in its recent hearings, the chair of the and other synthetic drugs by the federal receive a “hit”, often risking over-dosing. Committee, Bronwyn Bishop, attacked Parliamentary Joint Committee on the The final panel member was Ms Tina Van representatives from the Department Australian Crime Commission (PJC) is a Raay from Directions ACT counselling, of Health for publishing documents brave document. education and support service to drug containing harm minimisation messages, Most notably, in contrast to the report and alcohol users in the ACT. Ms Van saying ‘this document is full of harm from the House of Representatives Standing Raay provided insight into the life of minisation. The Prime Minister said that Committee, the PJC expressed unanimous a user and the difficulties they face in he is opposed to harm minimisation and support for harm minimisation and maintaining treatment. She recounted her that we do not have it’. recommended that ‘harm-reduction strategies brother’s own struggle with “Ice”, which She also reprimanded the ABC for using and programs receive more attention and resulted in his suicide several years ago. phrases like recreational drugs, party drugs resources’. “The forum gave Committee members and and harm reduction – all common phrases In its conclusions, the PJC stated that audience the opportunity to learn about amongst drug professionals. Professor ‘prohibition, while theoretically a logical and the many different aspects and effects of Margaret Hamilton, a respected drug properly-intentioned strategy, is not effective’. the drug ‘Ice’”, Committee Chair Ms Karin expert with over 30 years experience in the It also argued that ‘the current national MacDonald said. “This drug is extremely field, received a particularly harsh broadside approach to illicit drugs – supply reduction, addictive and can take a grip of a person’s for also using this type of terminology, as demand reduction and harm reduction – will life before they know it. The panel members well as for making the sensible observation achieve greater outcomes if a better balance provided insight into the drug, its physical that moral considerations have historically between these approaches can be reached’. In and mental consequences, the criminal played too great a role in drug debates. common parlance, this means there should be element involved, and the effect it can have Bishop is on a mission to ensure the less emphasis on law enforcement and more on users personally and their relationships.” Government’s drug prevention programs on education and drug treatment. “The comments raised during the open are sensationalised, going as far as calling In addition, the PJC recommended that a discussion were very informative and for a campaign based around the message review be undertaken on illicit pill testing. we thank all who attended today’s that ‘this is going to scramble your Another important recommendation was forum and offered their input.” brains’. that ‘public education and demand-reduction Several written submissions relating the In this climate, the Government’s drug campaigns for illicit drugs be factual, Terms of Reference of the inquiry have policy is unlikely to change markedly in informative and appropriately targeted’. already been made and further submissions response to the PJC’s recommendations. To those without intimate knowledge of can be sent to the Committee Secretary. Yet the members of the PJC have signaled the drug debate, these conclusions and Submissions can be viewed by visiting that there are now politicians from across recommendations may not seem remarkable. and following the political spectrum who are prepared to After all, they are rational and evidence-based. the links to the Committees’ page. listen and act on the evidence. But that is precisely why they are worthy of The Committee will hold two public Hopefully there will come a time special mention. Unfortunately, it is a rare hearing relating to the “Ice” inquiry. These when enough politicians recognise that event when any government body decides to will give key stakeholders the opportunity drug use disorders are a health problem make drug policy recommendations that are to address Committee members in person. that cannot be solved by harsh drug based on evidence. Public hearings will be held on Wednesday, 9 laws or sensationalised advertising. The significance of the PJC report is not only May and Wednesday, 16 May from 9.30amAndrew Macintosh is Deputy Director of because of the nature of its recommendations, 12.30pm in Committee Room One in the the Australia Institute but also the composition of the Committee. It Assembly. Hearings are open to the public is made up of representatives of both houses and are recorded. Anyone wanting to appear of Parliament and includes members and at a public hearing can contact the Committee senators from the two major parties. Secretary, Grace Concannon on 6205 0129.


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Are you 1 in 100?


Coeliac disease is one of the most under-diagnosed, yet most common chronic diseases and, if left undiagnosed, may lead to the possibility of severe consequences such as bowel cancer and osteoporosis. Coeliac disease affects approximately 1 in 100 people in Australia but 4 out of 5 people don’t know they have it. Coeliac disease is an auto-immune disease, which means that the body produces antibodies that attack its own tissues. For people with coeliac disease, this is triggered by gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye, barley and oats. Symptoms of coeliac disease may range from mild to severe, and can include: Bloating, diarrhoea, nausea, wind, tiredness, constipation, anaemia, mouth ulcers, headaches, weight loss, hair loss, skin problems, short stature (or in children, failure to thrive), infertility, unexplained osteoporosis, recurrent miscarriages and joint/bone pain. Some symptoms may be confused with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), or wheat intolerance, while others may be put down to stress, or getting older. If you think you have coeliac disease you should see your doctor. Do not, at this stage, remove gluten from your diet. Your doctor can order a simple blood test. However you must be ingesting a normal (glutencontaining diet) for these tests to be effective. It is possible to have a negative blood test yet still have coeliac disease. Your doctor will then refer you to a gastroenterologist for further testing. Following diagnosis and commencement of the gluten free diet the symptoms improve and the damage to the small bowel will repair.

If you would like more information on coeliac disease, please contact the Coeliac Society on 9487 5088 or Canberra contact: Lillian Triglone 6286 9577

Bipolar and schizophrenia:

Understanding children with learning difficulties

peer support can make all the difference

Good hearing is the most important sense for early learning. If you compare children who are born deaf which those who are born blind, by fourth grade, the deaf children will be two years behind the blind children. Good listening is the foundation for learning. Listening is what we do with the sounds our ear capture. 10-20% of children have learning and attention problems. The causes are complex. Poor attention can be caused by an auditory processing disorder, anxiety, learning disability, a food/chemical sensitivity or even giftedness. About 70% percent of children diagnosed with a ‘learning disability’ have an auditory processing problem. You need fast processing to understand speech. If it is slower than 100ms, you will not be able to distinguish “T” from “I” in the word “TICKED” and spelling will be hard. Processing slower than 200ms will add confusion of the “ck” sound. If it is slower than 400ms, you will be lost - the sounds will have no order at all. Children processing slower than 700ms have severe language delay and speech problems. The earlier you start treatment for a learning difficulty, the easier it is to fix - because brain plasticity declines with age. Hillside Health Centre (02) 6231 9111 understands learning and behavioural difficulties. We help hundreds of children each year to reach their potential - some come from as far away as India. If you bring this when you book a listening assessment, you will receive a free Sound Health CD of your choice.

Friends and family are often the first to help us through life’s challenges. It’s a great feeling when we can share our thoughts and emotions; to listen and offer encouragement to one another. Opportunities to talk openly like this can make all the difference. There are many people who live with bipolar and schizophrenia who are just like you. They too want to relate with someone, to talk about the issues confronting them. This was certainly the case for Peter Howard, a 23 year old chef who lives with schizophrenia. “Talking to people that couldn’t understand what I was going through was frustrating”. Peter says. Recognising this, a friend spotted a brochure on the Mental Health Foundation’s Peer Support Service and encouraged Peter to attend. Now Peter is able to talk through issues in a relaxed and friendly environment with people who understand. The Peer Support Service is a volunteer based program funded by the ACT Government. People can meet with volunteers to discuss their circumstances, opinions and to share information on services. Volunteers are uniquely placed to provide support to those facing challenges of living with Schizophrenia or Bipolar, as they themselves have faced similar experiences. All volunteers have completed specialist training and have a strong interest in helping others.

If you know someone who may benefit from using this service and would like to find out more information, contact the Mental Health Foundation on (02) 6282 6658 or visit or email

Does your child find learning difficult? • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Struggling with speech or language Poor hearing or listening (“what what?”) Poor maths, memory Reading or writing is difficult Low attention or poor comprehension Trouble sitting still at school Poor handwriting or drawing Poor balance or coordination Ear infections or often congested Low muscle tone or poor posture Low energy or anxiety Behavioural or social problems Poor organisation skills Book an assessment now so we can unlock your child’s potential … before it gets too difficult Hillside Health Centre in Kambah phone (02) 6231 9111

The Senior WORD

Caring for Canberra By Dee McGrath

Carers ACT provides a wide range of holistic services for family Carers including: •Information; •Counselling; •Respite; •Advocacy; •Education Workshops; •Social/Networking with other Carers. The Commonwealth Carelink Centre will give you immediate access to these services as well as source information about all community care services across the ACT. The Centre provides a free information and referral service for Carers, older people and people with disabilities to assist them to live independently in their own homes, or to assist them with the move to a residential facility. The Commonwealth Carelink

Centre has information about: •Household help •Home modification •Personal nursing •Meal services •Day care centres •Transport •Special services for dementia •Continence assistance •Aged care homes •Allied health care, including podiatry, and •Support Groups

Centres can be visited in person between 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday or by a free phone call to 1800 052 222. We also have resources available for those who have English as their second language and for those with hearing or sight impairments. Translating and Interpreting Service 131 450, National Relay Service (TTY) 1800 555 677 then ask for 1800 052 222

The Centre can also tell you about eligibility requirements for these services and most waiting times and costs involved. There are over 50 Commonwealth Carelink Centres across Australia and they are all linked by a free 1800 phone system which means if you are concerned about a family member living in another part of the country you can ring and be transferred through to their nearest centre for local information. The Centre for the ACT is located at Carers ACT at the Torrens Shops, although information can also be collected at the Belconnen office.

Breathe right to sleep right Every time John stopped breathing during the night, Bronwyn would lay awake wondering if this was the big one. After 2 years of sleep disrupted by loud snoring and sleep apnoeas Bronwyn eventually moved to sleep in a separate room. Even so, John’s snoring was so loud it could be heard through two closed doors and the sleep apnoea episodes were increasing. To make matters worse, John would suffer from drowsiness during the day and was often fighting to stay awake at work. Eventually, Bronwyn insisted that he visit the doctor.

Do you Suffer from?


Sleep Apnoea Asthma & Anxiety Attacks Can’t Exercise? Get results without Medication Appliances or Machines

A seniors moment..


The Buteyko method Silent easy breathing

An elderly couple

Do you need help to stay at home? Commonwealth Carelink Centres Freecall™ 1800 052 222* Would you like information about the wide range of community care programs and services available to help you stay at home? Call Freecall™ 1800 052 222* or visit one of the Commonwealth Carelink Centres around Australia to get information about services in your local region. * Calls from mobile phones are charged at applicable rates

John’s doctor confirmed that he was suffering from sleep apnoea. Surgery or a machine to help him breathe were the more radical options to help control his condition. However, there was a natural method that could help him by addressing the root cause of his troubles: - the way he was breathing. Snoring is disturbed breathing, in fact ’overbreathing’. It causes a loss of carbon dioxide from the lungs. Carbon dioxide is very important for normal bodily functioning; it is logical to assume that the body must have some way to prevent losing it. In a person with sleep apnoea, this defence mechanism activates to stop you breathing when the carbon dioxide level declines too much. Another mechanism by which snoring can lead to apnoea, is when the excessive volume of air passing the swollen tissues of the throat, sucks the airway shut temporarily. The Buteyko breathing method works by helping patients regain control of their breathing volume and restoring normal levels of carbon dioxide. Practising Buteyko, John put an end to his disrupted sleep for good and regained control of his health and his marriage! Do you snore or suffer from sleep apnoea? Do you experience restlessness, excessive movement while asleep? Do you wake up groggy, un-refreshed or get drowsy during the day? Left unchecked these symptoms could lead to more serious health problems. Take control of your health and address your sleeping problems now. Buteyko Health Solution is a physiotherapy clinic specialising in breathing related problems in adults and children. Come and find out how we can help you. For an appointment with our physiotherapists: Call: 6232 5222 Suite 7, Deakin Sports Therapy Centre, 2 King St, Deakin.

April 2007 Issue No. 29 April 2007 Issue No. 29

had dinner at another couple’s house, and after eating, the wives left the table and went into the kitchen. The two elderly gentlemen were talking, and one said, “Last night we went out to a new restaurant, and it was really great. I would recommend it very highly.” The other man said, “What is the name of the restaurant?” The first man thought and thought and finally said, “What is the name of that flower you give to someone you love? You know... the one that is red and has thorns. ” “Do you mean a rose?” “Oh, yes,” the man said, and then he turned toward the kitchen and yelled, “Rose, what’s the name of that restaurant we went to last night?”

The Word on Snoring & Apnoea ByTess Graham



I was born in 1931. During my growing up years we relied on tank water. Bath time for three children meant about 4 inches of water in the bath and we all either got in together, or took turns in the same water. The cleanest kids got first turn. Only if we had lots of rain and the tanks overflowed, were we allowed to fill the bath to the top. I never put much more than about 4 inches of water in the bath for my children either, it was a waste of water. Bath night happened once a week. We washed our hands, feet and legs in the hand basin before dinner. Nobody would have thought of washing their hair every day, once a week was quite enough and sometimes longer. Men wore their hair short, women spent time before bed, brushing their hair which got rid of all the dust etc and kept hair clean and shiny. We did not carry endless bottles of water wherever we went, my children did not have bottles of water on their desks so they could drink all day. It is quite possible to survive on just drinks at playtime and lunch time. Nor did we have to wait to pay for our groceries while the assistant had a quick drink from her water bottle. Dishes were washed by hand. Just how much water does it take to run a dish washer anyway? I have never owned a dishwasher and never felt the need. I grew up in an ‘extended family’ and had seven children. Dish washing can be a fun time with everyone helping. To me, doing the dishes was a time to relax at the end of the day. When the children were small, they did their homework around the table while I did the dishes. I was right there to help if needed. As they grew older, it was the one time in the day, when I knew no one was going to come and bother me. And often a time for my husband and I to have a little peace and quiet together. Showers were not invented. We built our first house, in a small Town in New Zealand in 1960. We had the first shower in Town. [We also had the first ‘family room’ by leaving the wall out between kitchen and dining room] I am not sure that the shower actually used less water but as the children grew too old to share a bath, it was quicker for each

one to shower. Children are well known for not flushing the toilet. Ours was only flushed when necessary. We never flushed at night [I still don’t even though I live alone]. It was too noisy and woke the babies. Washing when I was young was done by boiling water in a large copper container with a fire underneath for heating. The clothes were boiled in soapy water, rinsed twice in cold, put through a ‘wringer’ to remove excess water and hung out to dry. Washing was usually done on Monday’s, only once a week except for nappies which might be done every day. I had three babies before I got a washing machine. Every morning I carried a bucket of hot water to the outside laundry, washed and rinsed the nappies, wring by hand, and hung them out. My oldest daughter ‘helped’ me by standing on a stool and ‘swirling’ the nappies in the rinse water. A friend gave me a ‘wringer’ just before my third baby arrived, such luxury, no more wringing by hand. My first washing machine had to be filled, left to wash until I came and moved it on for the rinse. Then put on ‘spin’ to wring the clothes. No one would have dreamed of watering a lawn. It only made the grass grow faster and then it needed more mowing. Gardens were watered by hand using a watering can, if they needed it, using much less water. The first packets of washing powder were a great improvement on the old ‘soap’ method. There were only one or two brands, one specially for washing woollies. But who cared, it did the job. Shampoo appeared in 1953, One brand, sold only at the chemists. Dish washing liquid came in the mid 1960’s. It was sold by Garages in large containers and stayed frothy even after washing greasy dishes. The first advertisements for dish washing products pointed this out very proudly – no more ‘dead and greasy’ dish water – the suds lasted right to the end. With all the changes over the years in water usage (and so many other things!) probably one of the very few things that has not changed is water.

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The Senior WORD

Helen King Hearing Centres HELEN KING P. King Helen KingHelen Hearing Centres Audiometrist

On for young and old -

MAcAUD, MAc HAASA. MSHAAud (Lond) Accredited Provider The Vir Phone: (0 emai

Seniors Week a hit!

Hear It Now! Your hearing health questions answered.


This new column is about hearing health care. As trained audiometrists, we invite you to ask questions about your hearing which we’ll answer over the next 12 columns.

Is a hearing test painful? No. They’re quick, easy and painless.

Where can I have my hearing tested? If you’re over 21 and not on a pension you can have your hearing tested at any private hearing aid clinic (see the Yellow Pages).

Do I need a doctor’s referral for a hearing test?

Adjudicator Clerk of the House and the Usher of the Rod


he Executive Director of COTA (ACT), Mr Paul Flint declared that this year’s Seniors Week was the best ever. The Chief Minister, Mr John Stanhope officially launched the Week at a Breakfast at the Ainslie Football Club. There were more than sixty events during the week. Seniors were encouraged to attend exercise classes, go on walks around the suburbs, try their hand at sailing on Lake Tuggeranong, go supermarket snooping with Diabetes Australia, find out about the Independent Living Centre in Weston or attend free seminars that were held during the week. “Mythbusters” were introduced last year when the Mosque at Yarralumla and the Masonic Centre in Barton were opened. This provided an opportunity for seniors to discover something new about our community. These openings proved to be very popular Trudi Klingohr Kate Ernst and Sylvia Newell at Ainslie so we added another seven organisations. More than 1500 Seniors attended the two concerts at the Vikings Auditorium in Erindale. Major Geoff Grey was the Musical Director and Compare for the shows, which featured the RMC Band, Louise Page, Tom Millhouse, Gordon Nicholson, Graham Robertson, Georgia Pike and Joe McGrailBateup and the Legs Dancers. Both concerts were a great success. YOUR LOCAL The Great Debate was held at Old Parliament House with FUNERAL DIRECTOR much style and ceremony. I was that adjudicator for the debate and was dressed in the speaker’s robes, wig and all, and was accompanied by the Clerk of the House and the Usher of the Rod. The two teams, Kevin, Julie & Michelle Rostrum and the University of the Third Age debated the topic A family tradition of customer satisfaction “Old Parliament House turns 80 this year and is past its use – by –date”. Seniors Day unfortunately had to be cancelled because the venue, The Ainslie Arts Centre was badly damaged in the hailstorm on the 28th of February, and is still not Proudly Australian and family owned since 1900 habitable. We were able to notify most people that the day had been cancelled, but one of the staff and a volunteer set up a Morning Tea stand outside the building, so those who turned up were at least able to get a cup of coffee. Even with the cancellation it was a good week – It was QUEANBEYAN (02) 62971052 KINGSTON (02) 61660966 certainly on for young and old!

No. However, with your permission we’ll send your doctor a copy of your test if it reveals the need for further medical advice.

I’m an aged pensioner. Am I eligible for free hearing services? Yes. If you’re on an aged pension or covered by Veterans Affairs (for hearing) you’re eligible through the Office of Hearing Services. You’ll need to submit an ‘Application for a Hearing Services Voucher’ which we can send you (call 6239 4944). The Office of Hearing Services (1800 500 726) can also send you an application or your doctor can provide one. Once your doctor signs it the application is processed by the Office and you’ll receive a list of approved hearing service providers. Do you have a question about your

hearing health care? Mail it to Hear It Now! 1/45 Wentworth Ave Kingston, 2604 or email

Receive 25% off your comprehensive hearing test Simply mention this column when you book an appointment at any of the five Helen King Hearing Centres.

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on Health & Lifestyle

At your Capital Chemist, we know what matters.


The great weight debate The International Herald Tribune, reports on a letter sent to the editor of the Boston Globe over 120 years ago. The author of the letter posed the question “Can a man get fat on doughnut holes?” And then the writer himself provided the answer: “Doughnut holes can only be introduced into the stomach by eating the doughnut whole.” So, at least in America, being overweight was apparently a problem more than a century ago. Today the problem is much greater; and it’s not confined to the United States. Australia is fast becoming one of the fattest countries in the world.

Capital Chemists care for the community in many different ways. Of course, we care for our customers but our involvement in the Canberra community goes further. That’s why we have allocated more than $200,000 this year to a variety of community groups and worthwhile causes. Find your Capital Chemist at:



Mon to Fri 8.30am–8pm Sat, Sun & Public Hols 9am-6pm Closed Good Fri, Christmas Day Ph: 6292 8200

58 Giles Street Mon to Fri 8.30am–7pm Sat 8.30am–4pm Sun 10am–4pm Closed Public Hols Ph: 6295 9146

CHARNWOOD The Small Mall Mon to Fri 8.30am–7pm Sat & Sun 9am–7pm Public Hols 9am–5pm Closed Christmas Day, New Years Day Ph: 6258 4949

Being overweight or obese can significantly increase the risk of a number of chronic (ie, long term) diseases: type 2 diabetes, gall bladder disease, high blood pressure, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, sleep apnoea, heart disease and asthma. There are quite a few other conditions, as well; but any one of these is serious enough to start with.


Mon to Fri 8am–7pm Sat 9am–5pm Sun 10am–4pm Closed Public Hols Ph: 6292 2427

CURTIN Mon to Fri 8.30am–7pm Sat 8.30am–4pm Closed Sun & Public Hols

Obesity can also cause loss of self-esteem, social isolation, daytime sleepiness and fatigue, and impact on the risk of developing some cancers and heart disease. The cost is certainly significant in health terms for every individual person carrying excess weight. It’s also an enormous cost to the community. Last year the Sydney Morning Herald reported the total cost of health care in Australia for people who are overweight, including the cost to employers from lost work days is a massive $10.8 billion – and increasing. Of course, it makes good health and economic sense to combat the problem of obesity directly rather than treating chronic disease conditions when they almost inevitably occur. The solution is not all that complex: eat smart and exercise more. The latest Australian Institute of Health and Welfare Report showed that fewer than 30% of men and 40% of women were eating the recommended minimum of four serves of vegetables a day. For most of us we just eat too much anyway. Over the last 50 years portion sizes have increased two to five-fold; and high fat content processed foods make up a larger part of our diet.

DICKSON Mon to Fri

medicines where claims of benefit can be supported by good evidence, only one, orlistat, (mrketed under the brand name Xenical) is available without prescription. It works byreducing the absorption of fat. Australian newspapers reported this week that the National Drugs and Poisons Schedule Committee has recommended Xenical not be allowed to be advertised direct to the consumer – apparently not because of any safety issues (it does have unpleasant side effects if you eat too much fat), but because advertisements may have encouraged “inappropriate and excessive usage.” In any event your pharmacist can advise whether Xenical is suitable to help with your weight management program. You should aim for a body mass index (BMI) of less than 25 (it’s a ratio between weight and height, and your pharmacist can work that out for you) and your waist circumference – no more than 88cm for women and 102 for men.

8.30am–8pm Sat 8.30am–7pm Sun & Public Hols 9am–7pm Closed Good Friday, Christmas Day & New Years Day Ph: 6248 7684


LYNEHAM Wattle Street Mon to Sat 9am–7pm & Closed Sun Public Hols Ph: 6247 7004

O’CONNOR Sargood Street Mon to Fri 8.30am–11pm Sat, Sun & Public Hols 9am–11pm Ph: 6248 7050

PALMERSTON Mon to Fri 9am–7pm Sat 9am–1pm Closed Sun & Public Hols Ph: 6241 9710

SOUTHLANDS Mon to Fri 9am–7pm Sat, Sun & Public Hols 9am–6pm Closed Christmas Day & Good Fri Ph: 6286 3644

TUGGERANONG Hyperdome Mon to Thu 8.30am–6pm Fri 8.30am–9pm Sat 9am–5pm Sun & Public Hols 10am–4pm Ph: 6293 1166

Mon to Fri 8.30am–6pm Sat 8.30am–12 noon Closed Sun & Public Hols Ph: 6281 2581




Mon to Fri 9am–7pm Sat 9am–5pm Closed Sun & Public Hols Ph: 6231 7014


Mon to Fri 8.30am–9pm Sat, Sun & Public Hols 9am–9pm Closed Christmas Day Ph: 6231 6446

Mon to Thu 9am–5.30pm Fri 9am–9pm Sat 9am–5pm Sun & Public Hols 10am–4pm Ph: 6282 3960

Mon to Fri 9am - 7pm Sat 9am - 5pm Closed Sun & Public Hols PH: 6288 1334

' 2 % 9 10176

Some simple tips to help you do just that Medicines are available to help with weight reduction; and there are regularly promoted fad diets. But there is no quick fix. Of the

are on the Weight and Health fact card from your local Capital Chemist.



Belconnen’s 40th Birthday Mural Goes to the Wall!



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April 2007 Issue No. 29

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Belconnen has a brand new mural, and it is one of the most spectacular in Canberra! The mural, freshly mounted on the outside of Belconnen Community Centre, is sure to get plenty of approval from residents – after all, they designed it! When exploring how best to commemorate Belconnen’s 40th birthday last year, consultations with the community led to a proposal to repaint the three murals on the front of Belconnen Community Centre. Five community artists were engaged to work on the mural designs. They are Phil Nizette, Nasser Palangi, Duncan Smith, Jennifer Jones, and Kurt Laurenson. All have had extensive experience in producing public and community based art works, and have long term established links to Belconnen and the Community Centre. The project took place in four stages: o The artists ran workshops with community members and groups, leading to draft designs o the designs were presented in the media and the Belconnen Gallery for public comment o The panels were painted in mid March by the artists

Old mural - artists in front of the original mural, Phil Nizette, Duncan Smith, Nasser Palangi, and Kurt Laurenson.

New mural - panels being mounted installation by Peter McMillan

o mounting of the panels on Belconnen Community Centre The artists worked with 120 community members in 13 different workshop groups in 2006 to develop designs, concepts, photographs, and drawings. This helped create the concept, which sees a rainbow serpent twisting around images of people, buildings, and parks, and curving through a stylized work showing young people’s designs and activities. Come and have a look at the Centre on Swanson Plaza opposite the Bus Interchange – you’ll be guaranteed to see a colourful

Mural Painting - Duncan Smith, Kurt Laurenson, Phil Nizette, Jennifer Jones

contrast to the concrete landscape. The mural will have a public launch in late April. Our thanks especially to the ACT Government, which has given great support to the mural. For more information contact the Jo Bowen, on 6264 0200

The Chinese New Year Spectacular The NTDTV Chinese New Year Spectacular, which showed in Canberra Theatre on March 20 and 21, has completed its Australian tour for 12 shows in 5 cities but the interest in traditional Chinese culture is just beginning. Produced by the New York based independent Chinese television network, New Tang Dynasty Television (NTDTV), the Spectacular combined dance, music and song to present popular myths and legends from ancient Chinese culture including those from Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism. Mr Zhong Lee, president of NTDTV, said China has a 5000 year history and NTDTV’s aim in producing this show was to facilitate a renaissance of traditional Chinese culture through its art forms and folklore.



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The interest for such culture is certainly there in Canberra as evident in the two full house shows in Canberra including an extra show added due to popular demand. Despite the luxuriance of colour and splendid costuming in the dance scenes, the stage setting remained largely minimal with colour and variety provided by clever use of digitally animated backdrops. This was not a big budget operation but the excellent combination of beautiful traditional costumes and scenes, digitally mastered animation, stories that promote honesty, goodness and loyalty, and fascinating dancing has produced a memorable subtle entertainment of tremendous creativity and depth of feeling. Helen Musa, arts editor of the Canberra Times, said she was captivated by the show and there was something in it for everyone. Ms Musa said you “can’t go past the costuming and dancing in the show” but acknowledged that she found the Buddhist influence in the Spectacular “extremely interesting”. Ms Musa said she understood that the show touched on many different levels and said for her it had been most effective. ”Not just the eyes, not just the ears but on the heart and soul” she said. However, the Spectacular met disapproval of the communist Chinese government. Its consulate in Sydney advised diplomats and federal and state politicians not to see the show as reported by ABC Lateline. What are they afraid of such a nice traditional culture show?


Alex Murchison, of Canberra based didgeridoo manufacturers Echo Tree, has spent years tutoring would be aficionados in the finer arts of playing the didgeridoo. He has also taught the somewhat less finer art involved with this instrument, namely getting that termite hollowed wood tube to make any noise at all, never mind a musical note. No student of Alex has failed to achieve this feat and now with the launch of a tutorial DVD entitled “Learn to Play the Didgeridoo” no one ever will. As the presenter, Alex will take you through the basics required to play the didgeridoo. The DVD will teach you how to play the didgeridoo quickly and easily. The presentation is straight forward and easy to understand, where the sole aim is to get you playing, and to get you playing well. Alex uses the highly effective Echo Tree didgeridoo tuition method, developed in Australia throughout his years as a professional didgeridoo tutor. This method employs a unique three-step process, built on practical teaching experience, using exercises and techniques that are tried and proven to work. With practice you really can learn how to circular breathe and play the didgeridoo! Surprisingly, it’s really not that hard, and this presentation breaks it down for you into easy to understand steps that will have you playing your didgeridoo in no time! Once you can play a didgeridoo Alex can help again. With his brother Malcolm he owns and runs a local business called Echo Tree where they handcraft and offer exquisite, authentic, musical

WESTON CREEK BONSAI In April and May, two plays will be staged at Tuggeranong Arts Centre to raise awareness GROUP Inc about the impacts of mental illness. Would you recognise mental illness in yourself, your 2007 AUTUMN family or your friends? If you did, would you know how to help? BONSAI SHOW There is nothing so debilitating as having no sense of purpose or hope, and although the statistics on mental illness are frightening, often the experience of living with a mental Saturday 14th april illness is far worse. April - No Island is a Man will open people’s eyes to what depression is like as an experience, 10.00 am to 4.30 pm rather than as an illness. The play explores the experience of depression through the main sunday 15th april character, Jesse, and the impact his illness has on his friends and family. May – Imperfectly Sane during Schizophrenia Awareness Week, Canberra Celebrities and 10.00 am to 4.00 pm Canberra Youth Theatre participants will theatrically represent the true stories of people weston creek living with a mental illness, in collaboration with the Mental Health Foundation. community centre If you require information or support about mental illness for yourself, or someone you parkinson street, may be helping contact the Mental Health Foundation on: 6282 6658 or




Have you ever wanted to learn how to play the didgeridoo?

quality didgeridoos that are both beautiful and functional to a worldwide market. Their instruments come with a lifetime guarantee, and the indigenous style artwork that is painted onto them is certified as authentic with an authenticity label that provides all the details of the artist who created the artwork. Malcolm, the master craftsman, also provides a ‘custom made’ service, where he is able to craft almost anything that a customer wants. Alex has also recently gained exclusive rights for the Australia-wide distribution of an innovative new type of didgeridoo that has the potential to take the market by storm. This new product range of very affordable didgeridoos caters for children, travelers and the serious learner. They are made from a polymer and all models will retail for under $100. To find out more about these new modern polymer didgeridoos you can go to Alex Murchison also provides a service to schools both locally and schools that come on excursion from all around Australia, which both entertains and educates students about the didgeridoo. He calls this branch of the business “Didgeridoos Alive!”, and finds it a great tool to promote the didgeridoo as a musical instrument to a large audience. Alex is also involved with the community and indigenous organizations on a number of levels, one being that he teaches young people and at risk youth how to make a didgeridoo. Participants are given the opportunity to gain the skills needed to make their own didgeridoo and they get to take the one they made home with them. This program is often followed up with a ‘Learn to Play’ course. Alex also runs the ‘How to Make a Didgeridoo’ programs for the general public and calls them “Didj in a Day”, where course members get to do the whole thing in the one day and take their new didgeridoo home at the end of it! If you would like to learn how to make or play the didgeridoo or purchase one of the high quality instruments handcrafted by Echo Tree you can go to to find out more, or you can contact Alex on

Mental illness gets a theatrical make-over

major BONSAI demonstrations saturday – 2.00 pm sunday – 11.00 am and 2.00 pm bring in your trees for advice sales table admission : $4.00, concession: $2.00 children u/12: free

April 2007 Issue No. 29

weston a.c.t.



Settlers to Perform at the

Ethiopian artist & printmaker


Falaka Armide Yimer

The unusual works of award winning Ethiopian artist and printmaker Falaka Armide Yimer will be on exhibition for the first time in Canberra at Stephanie Burns Fine Art 27 March to 28 April. “Drifting in Time” is a rare collection (more than 20 pieces) of a small number of Yimer’s previous works and a larger number of new works representing his changing focus and style. “I used to just tell stories about daily life in Ethiopia,” says Yimer. “Although life in Australia is wonderful and free, I observe here, as I do everywhere I go, that people from my homeland continue to suffer. My focus now is to create Afro-Australian works.” Woodblock print making, one of the oldest techniques which few perform with Yimer’s precision, is challenging and truly ‘black and white’. “You have to know exactly what you’re cutting,” says Yimer. “You can’t make mistakes. You cut the wood once and go to print. There’s no going back and there’s no time for tomorrow or after tomorrow.” Yimer, who has more than 30 years experience as an artist, is recognised throughout Europe, the United States, the Middle East, and Africa. His work is in the National Museum of African Art (Washington), the National Museum (Addis Ababa), the New York Carbide Building, Edgar A. Lipman (Maryland), Yankil Ginsburg (Washington), the German Cultural Institute (Addis Ababa), and the Ethiopian Embassy (Washington). His important work, “Drifting in Time”, was commissioned by Campbelltown Gallery and Arts Centre.


Alps under water—

27 March to 28 April Opening: 6-8pm Friday 30 March

Claudia Chaseling

Gallery details Stephanie Burns Fine Art Shop 2, 25 Bentham Street, Yarralumla Shops (through the Post Office or via the back lane) Hours Tues–Sat 11am–5pm Directors Stephanie Burns and Stephen Hooper (02) 6285 2909 Email info@

April 2007 Issue No. 29

With an intricate painted line work and grid structure Claudia Chaseling’s art captures the rhythm and movement of the natural sources of water and light. In Alps under water Chaseling’s reputation as a contemporary artist is taken to new heights with a series of works combining industrial landscapes and historical and modern images with water (and light, as in the lead?). The exhibition consists of 12 print media works, three watercolours and one large mixed media on water colour paper. The exhibition’s centrepiece—Alps under water—is in eight parts and measures 220 cm x 480 cm. “Water represents life and transition,” says Chaseling. “I use it in a cultural sense as a symbol of survival and sustainability, painting its rhythmical dynamic and its layers, depths and reflections. Different perspectives exist near each other in my work and are visible through each other,” says Chaseling whose reputation nationally and internationally is rapidly growing. In 2006 she won two prestigious awards – the Toni and Albrech Kumm Prize and a Samstag Scholarship. Born in 1973 in Munich, Germany, Chaseling has exhibited in major galleries in her home country and in the United States, Italy, Austria, and Australia. In 2007 she will have two major solo exhibitions, one in the Staedtisches Museum Eisenhuettenstadt and the other in Kunstverein Uelzen. and building a client base • Promotion and media relations. There are interactive panel discussions and opportunities for Q & A sessions with the presenters. Each participant will receive an information kit • Want to find out how to sell more work? containing fact sheets, guides to AbaF services • Keen to get media interest in your art? and other specialist service providers. • Like to know more about how tax and Who can participate? insurance affect you? Any professional visual artist is eligible even • Want to spend more time making art, and if they don’t derive much income from their less time working at other jobs? art practice. If you are not sure whether you Whether you work full time as an artist, or qualify, talk to us. supplement your artistic career with other Level 4 Conference Room work, you can improve your knowledge and Chief Minister’s Department skills at this free workshop. Canberra Nara Centre Artist Business will strengthen your business 1 Constitution Avenue skills and help you build a sustainable art CIVIC ACT 2601 practice. For directions call Roxanne Lambie at artsACT This practical workshop includes presentations on 6207 0348 by industry experts, leading visual artists, WHEN gallery professionals and arts managers. Thursday 29 March 9am to 5pm What does the workshop include? How much? • Business basics – an introduction to tax, It’s free – AbaF is funded by the Australian insurance, risk management and copyright government for this program. • Building relationships with clients, Register now on line at commercial and community galleries and au/skillsdevelopment/. For further information artist-run spaces call Melinda Martin at AbaF on 03 9616 0300 • Going to market – documenting artwork or email

Artist Business – Skills Development for Visual Artists

The Settlers Band, formerly of the Snowy Mountains, Cooma, Queanbeyan and Canberra, have reformed for a milestone retrospective performance at the 2007 National Folk Festival during Easter at Exhibition Park in Canberra! They will appear 2.30pm Sunday for a 90 minute concert in the Palladium concert hall! The Settlers were formed in the early years of the Snowy Scheme by Ulick O’Boyle who hailed from Ireland. Ulick had the heart and mind of a poet and was a concrete worker on the Snowy. He was (and still is) a prolific songwriter with a distinctive style. A tea-chest bass and two guitars were the backing for the band as they sang in pubs and work camps the length and breadth of the Snowy Mountains. The songs they sang were written by Ulick and reflected the lives and times of the Snowy Mountains Scheme and its workers who came together from the four corners of the earth. In later years Ulick remarried and worked in Canberra, and continued writing songs about people and life in and around the Canberra

region and beyond. For example, his moving and evocative “Captain’s Flat Miner” song from this period is considered an outstanding historical ballad. As Ulick and the Settlers, the band continued to record and perform using local musicians Geoff Begg, Pete West, Pete Hobson, Simon Kravis, Paul Davey and others. The band had a long recording career. In the early sixties, the RCA Record Company was impressed by the raw authentic character of the Settlers’ songs. An album was soon released, called “Songs of the Snowy Mountains”, followed by “More Songs of the Snowy Mountains” and an album about life in Kings Cross, Sydney, called “Love at Kings Cross”. Later albums included “West of Cooma” published in the 1980s by Selection Records of Tamworth, “Singing Down the Track”, “Hero of Waterloo”, “Snowy Rambler”, and “Kiandra”. Some of the later albums were recorded not so much for commercial release as for posterity reasons, “for the record”; being of limited release, they are much sought after today by collectors.

Warped and Twisted 2007 Canberra Spinners & Weavers Inc annual exhibition and sale

Members show works created during the past year: proficiency in hand spinning and dyeing, felting, knitting, weaving, tapestry, rug making, crochet and allied techniques produce unique articles of the highest quality. Spinners explore the use of fibres such as angora and silk as well as the high quality fleece available from local graziers and breeders including lambs’ wool, alpaca, mohair and fine merino. Many of the well crafted items on display will be for sale and range from the purely decorative to the practical: wall hangings, rugs, household linen, shawls, foot-friendly socks, hats, bags for all occasions, garments and skeins of colourful yarn. The well-stocked shop carries further delights for all ages and all seasons. Opening Times 10 am to 4 pm CSIRO Discovery, Clunies Ross Street, Black Mountain ACT 27-29 April. The venue provides wheelchair access. If you require further information please contact Helen on 6295 7313 or email e-mail

The Jester by B Y T O M W O O D WA R D Send in the clowns, drown in the wine, and dream

with the music. Canberra’s very own Bayonet Records invites you to its film-clip Masquerade Ball. To be held at the Albert Hall on the 11th of May, the Jester Ball will be a novel and exotic evening of entertainment. The night will ignite with wild poetry and sultry jazz, the haunting murmur of a twisted string quartet and the sombre sounds of Bayonet Records’ latest album, Blue Day Requiem. Film crews and photographers will mingle amongst the revelry, literally producing the material that will serve as the film-clip for Blue Day Requiem’s first single, Drinking the Dregs. Like a traditional Masquerade Ball, The Jester Ball will be a festive toast to the spirit of art and a celebration of the imagination. The archetypal jester

represents the mystical cleverness bereft of reason inside all of us. With a rose in one hand and a bindle in the other, the jester is portrayed innocently striding towards the edge of a cliff. It is with the spirit of this innocence that Bayonet Records invites you to stride from the norm and fall to a fun filled night of glitz glut and glamour. With The Jesters Bar serving beer, bubbly and wine, decorated bodies and masked faces will collage the hall from 7pm ‘till midnight. Tickets can be purchased for $17 from Landspeed, Songland and The Street Theatre from March 15th (they go up to $20 on April Fools Day). So leave your inhibitions at home, bring your imagination with you, and be anyone or any thing you like. For workers, artists, drinkers, hoboes, students, and anyone with the spirit to do something different the, Jester Ball is definitely a night not to be missed.

Friday May 11th Albert Hall, Commonwealth Ave, TICKETS: $17 Available at Songland, Landspeed or through website $20 from April Fools Day.

National Folk Festival!!

Ulick now enjoys retirement in Healsville Victoria, but the Settlers have reformed to present a concert at the 2007 National Folk Festival in Canberra. This concert focuses on Settlers’ songs of the Snowy Scheme period and ties in with the Festival’s major theme of “Water”. It promises to be a most entertaining concert with plenty of variety and revelations about the life and times of the construction years of the great engineering marvel that is the Snowy Mountains Hydro

Scheme. For the NFF performance, along with several former members of the Settlers’ we will have well known Canberra muso Tony Hunter playing resonator guitar & Peter Logue on piano accordean. We hope to see you there!

For more details about the wonderful 2007 National Folk Festival, visit

Something Special To Impress

Paul Ippolito Talks Wine

Coldstream Hills Yarra Valley Chardonnay 2006 Tight and elegant yet with quite intense nectarine and melon. Hints of citrine lemon and minerality follow, melded with integrated French oak. Complexity abounds from the aromas, evolving in layers over time. Tangy lemons, ripe peaches and toasty oak flow onto a long refined palate, lingering long with a crisp finish. Try this with slow roasted pork fillets. Drink to 2013. About $27.

Savour This

Orlando Gramps Botrytis Semillon 2004 This wine recently took out the best Sweet White Wine award at the Sydney Wine Show and after having a taste of it, it is clear why the judges were so impressed. Two things stood out with this wine – its balance and its structure. Indeed very enjoyable drinking, as glass after glass is taken, coupled with lemon and lime tart with vanilla ice cream. Drink Now to 2019. About $15 (375ml).

Value Drinking

Turn Right at Istanbul: A Walk on the Gallipoli Peninsula, by Tony Wright (Alllen and Unwin) Tony Wright stuffs a copy of his great-uncle George’s Gallipoli diary into his backpack and sets out from Sydney to discover how and why thousands of young Australians and New Zealanders make the trek to the Gallipoli Peninsula every year. Armed with a pile of notebooks, he plans to travel alone. But he keeps meeting and befriending people— a young Turkish archaeologist who reveals the secrets of Istanbul and the Turkish heart; a Turkish boy in Cappadocia who speaks English with an Irish accent; and an enterprising girl paying her way to Gallipoli by selling Anzac stubby holders. And then there’s Tom, a 21-year-old leprechaun with the soul of a poet, who teams up with the author to walk the battlefields of Old Anzac, sail the Aegean in a barely seaworthy ferry and mutter prayers to the souls that inhabit the ridges of Gallipoli. Anyone who has ever dreamed of traveling to Turkey and taking part in the Gallipoli experience will find this book a moving, inspiring and occasionally hilarious roadmap to the heart of both Australia and New Zealand in an ancient land. It is likely that before you have reached the last chapter you will feel like packing your own bag, because this is a travel adventure so entertaining and informative that it wills the reader to follow the author’s every footstep. Journalist Tony Wright, author of the book ‘Turn Right at Istanbul’, will be giving a talk at Tuggeranong Homestead on Sunday 15 April at 2pm, in the C.E.W. Bean Room, the room where Bean wrote ‘The Anzac Story’. Tony will describe his journeys back to Turkey and his own special pilgrimages to Anzac Cove in the company of many young backpackers. His story touches on both the light-hearted aspects of such a trip and also explores the meaning of Anzac for a new generation of Australians and New Zealanders. Copies of Tony’s book will be on sale. $10 entry ($8 concession) includes afternoon tea. Booking required: ring the Homestead

on 6292 8888.

WANTED: 16- 25 year olds who want to perform! Places are still available for Moving Beyond. Moving Beyond is a production in collaboration with the ACT Mental Health Foundation. You will work with a local director and Canberra celebrities to bring to the stage the stories of those who live with mental illness. REHEARSALS START APRIL 23RD @ Turner Scout Hall, Masson Street with PERFORMANCES @ Tuggeranong Arts Centre on 18th and 19th May. Call Pip or Sharon at the CYT office 6248 5057 for more info and to discuss the special last minute enrolment discount rate. For a list of many film and arts grants, competitions, awards and prizes, go to



The Departed Stars: Jack Nicholson, Matt Damon, Leonardo Di Caprio, Mark Wahlberg, ON Alec Baldwin, Martin Sheen, Ray Winstone Director: Martin Scorcese

Martin Scorcese returned to the gangster genre with this year’s Oscarwinning crime thriller The Departed – and ended up winning not only the golden statuette for Best Director, but another one for Best Picture. Scorsese finally basked in Oscar triumph at the 79th Academy Awards last month. Set amongst Boston’s Irish-American fraternity, this complex drama is character driven which sees the state police force waging war on organised crime. Di Caprio is the young undercover cop Billy Costigan who infiltrates the mob syndicate that’s run by gangland chief Costello (Nicholson knows how to play ruthless). While Billy gains Costello’s confidence, Damon in the guise of Colin Sullivan is the hardened young criminal who has infiltrated the police department. This classy remake of the 2002 Hong Kong hit Internal Affairs, features strong intrigue and dialogue, top-notch acting, crisp direction and sharp editing.


Pete Hobson guitar fiddle mandolin vocal; Pete Logue piano accordian; Geoff Begg guitar vocal; Simon Kravis acoustic bass, Pete West harmonica button accordian vocal; & Tony Hunter (not in picture) acoustic resonator guitar.

A new generation of Gallipoli pilgrims


The Good Shepherd Director: Robert De Niro Cast: Matt Damon, Angelina Jolie, Alec Baldwin, Billy Crudup, Michael Gambon, William Hurt, Joe Pesci,

Primo Estate Merlesco Merlot 2006

Stock Up On This

Millamolong Chardonnay 2005 Another quality Chardonnay coming from the cool climate Orange region in Central NSW. Classically varietal in presentation with nectarine, melon, mandarin and almonds emanating from the beautiful aromas. An alluring yet vibrant wine follows of complexity and deep concentration of fruit flavour. A very drinkable wine. Try it with a king prawn salad. Drink Now to 2009. About $20.

Paul Ippolito writes about wine for publications across Australia, overseas and the Internet and has spoken on radio. Read more of his work at

John Turturro The birth of the CIA as viewed through the life of a man who valued secrecy, discretion and a commitment to honour America forms the basis of The Good Shepherd. A multi-talented strong cast is led by Damon, Jolie and De Niro (who also directs), along with Hurt, Baldwin, Gambon and Crudup. Damon stars as Edward Wilson, who while studying at Yale in 1939, joins the exclusive Skull and Bones Society and ends up working for US Intelligence during the war. We also see him as a veteran CIA operative in 1961, earnestly working to unravel who betrayed the US in the doomed Bay of Pigs operation. Weaving through the betrayals and the complex corridors of intelligence and counter-intelligence, De Niro delivers a powerful film with a clear message, despite an unbelievable scenario.

April 2007Issue No. 29

A drink now bistro style red that is synonymous with good food and good company. Savoury and quite European, there is quite a bit of fruit driven character to this wine as well. Think sweet dark red cherries, spicy yet succulent plums and ripe fresh raspberries. Well balanced, delicious in mouthfeel. A perfect drink with food wine. Try it with oven baked penne. Drink Now. About $15.


Suitable shrubs for powerline planting MARK



Canberra Garden World

Structure Your Garden After the onslaught of our recent hot weather, now is the time to sit back and evaluate just how well your garden has survived the summer ordeals. Before you get too carried away by pretty flowers, plan out your new landscape by tackling the structural elements first. Outdoor entertaining, despite the weather getting cooler, is actually more rewarding and relaxing this time of year. You can still sit outside on your paved terrace, or from the outlook of your new gazebo, pergola or deck, and enjoy the birds before dinner. A simple timber gazebo sets the scene as your garden’s new focal point, where you can unwind from a hard day, with a glass of wine, and catch up on with the family. Consider the extension of your outdoor living spaces with a paved terrace. Not only does it create a vital link between indoors and out, it makes a great transition area for entertaining. Consider breaking up large expanses of paving with border inserts, pebble mosaics or mondo grass, to avoid a bland appearance. The ranges of stone, concrete, granite and limestone products provide unlimited choice to suit every budget and landscape style. Today’s modern trend of layering your garden style is proving even more popular. Consider changes in level with paved areas and timber platforms, but don’t limit yourself there. The use of screens for privacy and security is still a common theme, and are easy to achieve. From off the roll brush and bamboo screening, to custom timber slatted screens, you can gain more privacy with the simple and correct placement of these elements. Create solid elements to anchor your design by using stone retaining walls, rendered brick walls, or stone cladding to create textural detailing. These solid walls also act as heat banks, making them ideal to grow frost sensitive plants against, as the masonry will absorb the heat of the day, releasing it slowly during the night. Canberra Garden World 12-14 Arnott St HUME Come celebrate your new lifestyle with us

In the interest of public safety and as part of its annual Trees, powerlines and safety campaign, ActewAGL has made available a comprehensive list of plants and shrubs suitable for planting near powerlines. In 2005 approximately seven per cent of unplanned interruptions to electricity supply in the ACT were caused by trees. During the same period 6,815 notices were issued for trees encroaching on powerlines. However, it is important to note that trees near powerlines not only cause electricity interruptions, they can also have far more severe effects, such as fire and electric shock. ActewAGL General Manager Networks Michael Charlton said, “Owners of private ACT land are legally responsible for keeping trees and other vegetation clear of powerlines. In the case of rental property, both the tenant and the landowner have responsibilities under law. “Not only will the careful selection of plants and shrubs help landholders avoid the costly exercise of regular trimming, but it can also minimise the possibility of receiving a fine of up to $1,000 for individuals, or

$5,000 for corporations, for permitting trees to grow too close to powerlines.” Drought-tolerant shrubs for planting near powerlines Native shrubs to approximately 2 metres * Westringea “Wynyabbie Gem” * Acacia lanigera - woolly acacia * Callistemon “Little John” - dwarf bottlebrush * Leptospermum (various) - tea tree * Grevillea iaspicula - Wee Jasper grevillea Exotic shrubs to approximately 2 metres * Escallonia “Apple Blossom” * Buddleja davidii - butterfly bush * Viburnum davidii * Raphiolepis “Rajah” * Abelia floribunda - glossy abelia For a comprehensive list of suitable shrubs for planting near powerlines or to obtain ActewAGL’s Trees, powerlines and safety brochure, which provides information on the minimum distances occupants are required to keep their trees from powerlines, visit

Designer furniture exhibition BY THOMAS McCOY

The work of final-year cabinet making students from the Canberra Institute of Technology (CIT) will be showcased on the top level of the Canberra Centre in April. Over a dozen pieces will be on show at the annual Furniture Design Display, including the winners of the CIT Awards for Excellence in Furniture Making Craftsmanship. “What’s on display this year is stunning,” says teacher Des Hill, originally from Dublin. “I’ve been involved in these awards since they

Sponsored by

Front Row, L-R: Rolf, Josh, Daniel and teacher Angus Watson. Back Row, L-R: John, Peter, Phil, Richard, Terry, Brock, Brock, Jesse and Matt.

began in the early eighties, and every year we ask ourselves what the students can possibly do that will be original and different from what we’ve seen before. And every year they amaze us with their creativity and craftsmanship.” Students are given just one semester to create an original piece of furniture based on a design brief. Although each piece must contain at least one drawer and a door, and feature several types of joint, students are generally free to build any furniture item they like. “The most unusual thing we’ve ever had was a ‘coffin table’, which was a coffee table in the shape of a coffin, with a hinged lid and internal draw,” explains teacher Mirsad Ramic. “This year we have a superb selection of pieces ranging from an intricately constructed ladies sewing desk, in the classic tradition, to funky storage cabinets, plus sideboards, cocktail cabinets, entertainment units and low tables. The one thing they have in common is the quality of the workmanship and we’re delighted that people will be able to see these inspiring pieces at the Canberra Centre.” The CIT Furniture Design Display will be on show at the top level of the Canberra Centre from Monday 2 April, right through Easter, until Sunday 15 April. For more information on CIT courses in cabinet making, ring the CIT Information Centre on 6207 3166 or visit their website at

Caravan, Boating & Lifestyle Expo 13 - 15 April 2007

First 150* people receive FREE instant lottery ticket Daily Prizes BBQ & Drinks

WIN a Dinner Cruise for two Interest Free & Expo Deals available all weekend

- Saltwater & Chlorine pools from $2600 - Pool Accessories & Heating - Inflatables & fibreglass RIBs - Fishing, Sports and Tender models - Customised models on display

- Outboard Engines & Accessories - Landscape Products - Greenhouses & Cubby Houses - Synthetic Lawns & Greens - Much more to choose from... 12-14 Arnott St, Hume

6260 1425


Garden WORLD

It’s A Whole New World


Wise watering and smart gardening made easy






Record low inflows into our reservoirs have led ACTEW to initiate the Water2WATER project. This proposal would supplement the ACT’s water supply by purifying the water used in Canberra and adding this to an enlarged Cotter reservoir – providing a secure and sustainable water supply for our city. Canberrans are encouraged to participate in the consultation process as we explore Water2WATER. You can: · Contact the Project Office or visit the website · Submit your feedback, question or public submission · Book a briefing for your community group or school · Follow the independent advice provided by the Expert Reference Panel on the health aspects of the project · View the Water2WATER display at local events

Phone 02 6248 3563

Z00 29036

e can all take simple steps to be smarter with water use and still maintain a healthy garden. And a water-wise garden not only saves water, it can be a lower maintenance garden as well. With smaller lawn areas, effective use of mulch and landscaping, and a properly designed irrigation system, water-wise gardens are often less work than conventional gardens. As part of its ‘Think water, act water’ program, the ACT Government offers a $30 GardenSmart service to assist ACT residents maintain a healthy garden without using too much water. A qualified horticulturist provides practical, professional advice tailored to your garden regarding design, watering, maintenance, plant choice and more. To put your GardenSmart advice into action, there is also a $50 rebate on selected water-efficient garden products. Here are just a few GardenSmart tips: • By adding organic matter like manure or compost to your soil, you will improve plant growth, increase soil water retention and need less fertiliser. • Before you purchase plants, check their water, sun, soil and maintenance needs and think about how you might group the plants with similar requirements. • Consider replacing some of your lawn area with permeable paving, pebbles or hardy ground covers that require less water. • Mulch your garden to reduce evaporation and run-off, discourage weed growth and keep the soil cooler in summer. • Adjust your garden and lawn watering patterns to account for weather conditions and plant needs. • Change the setting on your automatic watering system at the start of each season. • Check your irrigation system regularly for leaks and blockages. • Remove weeds from your garden because weeds compete with other plants for water.

‘If it’s a truck load or a can... When it comes to rubbish, call the Rubbish Removal Man” Everything to do with Rubbish Removal we do it! From start to finish Yards Cleaned Same Day Service All Suburbs 7 Days a Week Friendly Customer Service Pensioner Discounts

PHONE: 0448 928 149 For an obligation free quote

April 2007Issue No. 29

Rubbish Rubbish Removal Removal Man Man Old Old Furniture Furniture Removed Removed Demolition D liti



Many Happy Solar Returns, Aries! This is your month! On this Full Moon, the Aries Sun is atop the Midheaven of the lunation chart! Expect to have high visibility! Your ruler, Mars, is past the tough fixed T-square of last month. It’s proximal position to Neptune marks that your actions are propelled by a new declaration of dreams. At New Moon, your ruler is in Pisces and squares Venus, the love planet. Expect disagreements and compromises with the opposite sex! Mutable squares can create miscommunication that mirror the retrograde effect! Stall!

on Canberra & Queanbe

lunchbreak D A N G E R ! D A N G E R !






gave a one question final exam after a semester dealing with a broad array of topics. The class was already seated and ready to go when the professor picked up his chair, plopped it on his desk and wrote on the board: “Using everything we have learned this semester, prove that this chair does not exist.” Fingers flew, erasers erased, notebooks were filled in furious fashion. Some students wrote over 30 pages in one hour attempting to refute the existence of the chair. One member of the class however, was up and finished in less than a minute. Weeks later when the grades were posted, the rest of the group wondered how he could have gotten an A when he had barely written anything at all. His answer consisted of two words: “What chair?”

I use to eat natural foods, but then I found out that 65% of all people die of natural causes. A shopkeeper was dismayed when a brand new business much like his own opened up next door and erected a huge sign which read BEST DEALS. He was horrified when another competitor opened up on his right, and announced its arrival with an even larger sign, reading LOWEST PRICES. The shopkeeper was panicked, until he got an idea. He put the biggest sign of all over his own shop - it read... MAIN ENTRANCE.

A woman awoke excitedly on Valentine’s Day and announced enthusiastically

to her husband, “I just dreamt that you gave me a pearl necklace for Valentine’s Day! What do you think it means?” With certainty in his voice, the man said, “You’ll know tonight.” That evening, the man came home with a small package and handed it to his wife. With anxious anticipation the woman quickly opened the package to find a book entitled, “The Meaning of Dreams.”

This guy had a girlfriend called Lorraine who was very pretty and he liked her a lot. One day he went to work to find that a new girl had started. Her name was Clearly and she was absolutely gorgeous. He became quite besotted with her and after a while it became obvious that she was interested in him too. But this guy was a loyal man and he wouldn’t get involved with Clearly while he was still going out with Lorraine. He decided that there was nothing for it but to break up with her and get it on with the new girl. He planned several times to tell Lorraine but he couldn’t bring himself to do it. One day they went for a walk along the river bank when Lorraine slipped and fell in to the river. The current carried her off and she drowned. The guy stopped for a moment by the river and then ran off singing “I can see Clearly now Lorraine has gone”

Your ruler, Venus, is in Taurus this Full Moon and in a dynamic fixed T-square with Neptune and Saturn! Friends, family and lovers can fall short of your ideal now. Being a bully will not help!!! Do not become a miserable prisoner of your expectations. At New Moon, your ruler is in Gemini and square to Mars. Much dissent and discussion with the opposite sex is seen but few strong conclusions are reached. Inside yourself you may find a more silent battle between courting patience and taking initiative for change. Most decisions are temporary in this cycle. Wait.


This Full Moon you have had enough! Your ruler, Mercury is in Pisces conjoining Uranus and square to Jupiter!!! Be very careful you do not destroy something that took years to create! Burnout can be an issue now so strive to pace yourself. At New Moon, your ruler is in Aries and kissing Ceres. You will ardently defend family and close ties now. Eliminate as much of the dishonesty around you and within you as you are able. Venus is in your sign but square to Mars in Pisces. Knowing when to drop the argument is elusive at best. Avoid dishing ultimatums.


Your ruler, the Moon, is Full in Libra and in trine to Chiron. This is an excellent time to create a strategy for your mental and emotional health as you move forward. Working well and in close cooperation to others is highlighted. Encourage healthy relationships only. At New Moon, your ruler is kissing the Sun and trine to Pluto! Passions A rage for a deep and more powerful meaning in your life and you have much energy to pursue your goals. Old debts can be repaid in this cycle as well as the unconditional appreciation of those you have served. Please take a bow!

LEO JUL 22 - AUG 23

This Full Moon, your rule, the Sun, is in Aries and courting a Grand Trine to Jupiter and Saturn! Make plans to expand on the foundation you have established. Seek mentors from your past to help you move forward with radiance! At New Moon, the Lights are kissing in late Aries and in trine to Pluto! This is a powerful time to quicken your resources and make progress toward your long range goals. Career and investment opportunities flow in. Slow down a bit and evaluate in order to make the wisest choices. Happily bring others into your winner circle!


Mercury, your ruler, is in Pisces this Full Moon and can be tossed on the seas of discontent with its square to Jupiter if you allow it. Many of your obligations and responsibilities have been removed but do not mourn the lack as much as you can embrace your new found freedom. At New Moon, you will be moving forward mentally as your ruler will be in Aries. Patience will not be at a premium so it best to keep yourself busy with those things you are in control of. Avoid those who are so caught up in drama that they get little done. Practice your own mental calisthenics!

A burglar had just broken

into a house and was stealing anything he could get his hands on. Then he heard a voice. It said, “Jesus is watching you.” Thinking its in his head he continues on his business. Then he hears it again, “Jesus is watching you.” The burglar not very religious but still scared says, “Who are you?” Then he flipped on the light not caring if he was caught by the house owners. All he sees is a parrot in the corner. The parrot then says, “Jesus is watching you.” The burglar asks the parrot his name. The parrot replied, “Satan.” The burglar laughs and says, “Who would name their parrot Satan?” The parrot says, “Same person who would name their rottweiler Jesus.”

A man said his credit card was stolen but he decided not to report it because the thief was spending less than his wife did.

Wanna good joke? yeah, us too! Send them in...


Yes, the Full Moon is in your sign so you simply must impose your gift of reason!! Your ruler, Venus, is in Taurus in T-square to Saturn and Neptune! Honor those in authority but do not let them flog your dreams. Time spent alone or just daydreaming will serve you well. At New Moon, your ruler has moved into versatile Gemini but is square to Piscean Mars. You do NOT have to be the peacemaker 24/7! Exchange of many ideas can actually be stimulating and pleasurable. Decisions of what movie to see or what to do for dinner will steal the night if you are not careful!


How sweet this Full Moon as a creative sextile is formed between your rulerships of Mars and Pluto! No challenges aspects occur to these dynamic planets so your occupation and recreation can flow very smoothly. Enjoy it while it lasts! At New Moon, one of your rulers, Mars, has moved into Pisces and is in square to Venus in Gemini. Expect to be dealing with much indecision in your world! The micromanagement of projects can lead to the ultimate in frustration! Organizing all information - whether it is policy changes or a grocery list - is critical in this cycle.

In 1981 1. Prince Charles got married 2. Liverpool crowned Champions of Europe 3. Australia lost the Ashes 4. Pope Died

In 2005


1. Prince Charles got married (again) 2. Liverpool crowned Champions of Europe(again) 3. Australia lost the Ashes (again) 4. Pope Died (again)

Your ruler, Jupiter, is in Sagittarius all month. This, our largest planet is conjunct the fixed star, Sabik, the Fire Star. Mid-month, Jupiter retrogrades, so all bets are off! In the Full Moon chart, your ruler is in a Grand Trine to the Sun and retrograde Saturn and square to Uranus! Desire for dramatic change can be blocked by the status quo but can be fine tuned by the brilliant for another time. At New Moon, with Jupiter now retrograde, opportunities slow, what best serves the future is under re-evaluation. Caution in all decisions is advised.

Moral of the story In future, if Prince Charles decides to re-marry....someone warn the Pope


Saturn, your ruler, is in a Grand Trine at Full Moon! Every lesson you have learned you will be sharing with others - abundantly! Returning to those persons and activities you have loved in the past can bring great inspiration! You may just decide to travel back to places and times that renew you! Past life recall can also emerge at this time. At New Moon, rest on who you are and how you are becoming. Honor those who have contributed to your wisdom whether they are still in your life or not. Be sure to remember all your blessings and be glad. Glow!


This Full Moon can bring incredible revelations and shocking news! Your rule, Uranus, is conjunct to Mercury, square to Jupiter and opposing the South Node! Breaking free from old habits and looking out at the World through new eyes is seen. Even those you have known for many years may really surprise you now! At New Moon, you can discover that the cost of progress is a bit steep! Reevaluate your options to create that which you desire even if you must suffer from necessary delays. Friends and work acquaintances are more loyal than you know!


Your ruler, Neptune, is in Aquarius all month. At Full Moon, it is a T-square to Venus and Saturn. The big picture about your family and loved ones suddenly comes into focus. You will find yourself wondering how you did not realize this before! At New Moon, Neptune angles off with the Ascendant on the Eastern seaboard. Those friends and family who will disagree with you, or will tell you when you are dead wrong, are the ones you need to pull closer to. The “yes” persons in your life do not serve you well at this time. Be a bit contrary! It is good for the soul!

Send us your funny! Men are just happier people

What do you expect from such simple creatures? Your last name stays put. The garage is all yours. Wedding plans take care of themselves. Chocolate is just another snack. You can be President. You can never be pregnant. You can wear a white T-shirt to a water park. You can wear NO shirt to a water park. Car mechanics tell you the truth.

The world is your urinal. You never have to drive to another gas station restroom because this one is just too icky. You don’t have to stop and think of which way to turn a nut on a bolt. Same work, more pay. Wrinkles add character. Graying hair adds attraction. Wedding dress~$5000. Tux rental~$100. People never stare at your chest when you’re talking to them. The occasional wellrendered belch is practically expected. New shoes don’t cut, blister, or mangle your feet. One mood all the time. Phone conversations are over in 30 seconds flat. You know stuff about tanks.

A five-day vacation requires only one suitcase. You can open all your own jars. You get extra credit for the slightest act of thoughtfulness. If someone forgets to invite you, he or she can still be your friend. Your underwear is $8.95 for a three-pack. Three pairs of shoes are more than enough. You almost never have strap problems in public. You are unable to see wrinkles in your clothes.

A man and his wife were making their first doctor visit, the wife being pregnant with their first child. After everything checked out, the doctor took a small stamp and stamped the wife’s stomach with indelible ink. The couple was curious about what the stamp read, so when they got home, the husband got out his magnifying glass to try to see what it was. In very tiny letters, the stamp said, “When you can read this, come back and see me.”

Everything on your face stays its original color. The same hairstyle lasts for years, maybe decades. You only have to shave your face and neck. You can play with toys all your life. Your belly usually hides your big hips. One wallet and one pair of shoes one color for all seasons. You can wear shorts no matter how your legs look. You can “do” you r nails with a pocket knife You have freedom of choice concerning growing a mustache. You can do Christmas shopping for 25 relatives on December 24 in 25 minutes. No wonder men are happier.

Auto Italia 2007 – beautiful Italian machinery BY JENNY RANSLEY Enthusiasts flocked to Grevillea Park on March 25th to drool over the 500 beautiful Italian cars, motorcycles and scooters, revelling in the many shining examples of Italian mechanical genius clad in designer bodywork that were on display for the 23rd Auto Italia meet. Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Maseratis, Lancias, Alfa Romeos, Fiats, Ducatis, Moto Guzzis, Aprilias, MV Augustas, Laverdas, Paiggio, Bimota, Benelli, Vespa Lambretta, Gilera and Italjet. Whatever Italian machinery takes your fancy, it was there! The best of Italian machinery was on show at Auto Italia” said Judith Hazel, President of the Auto Italia Committee “It was not a concourso event but more of a social gathering. These cars, bikes and scooters are driven daily with love. Auto Italia is a fun occasion for the ordinary enthusiast“. The featured marque for 2007 was the Lamborghini and we celebrated the 50th birthday of the Fiat 500. Race bikes are featured along with Lambretta scooters who are celebrating their 60th birthday!” See also

MOTOR TORQUE By Graham Jacobs


BMW is planning radical steps to lower

the average age of its customers. The latest BMW sports machine is designed very much around the younger driver, who is preoccupied with the great issues of the day; namely emissions, comfort and pedestrian safety. In introducing the electric-powered roadster, BMW has dispensed with one of its most evocative signatures, the iconic straight six-cylinder engine exhaust warble, but the benefit is that exhaust emissions are reduced to zero. This vehicle is intended for on-pavement use only, rather than on or off-road use, top speed is electronically limited to 4 km/h, and given the traditional BMW 50/50 weight distribution, svelte shape and full body detailing, it will keep budding young sportscar drivers amused for around 90 minutes before requiring a pit stop to recharge their batteries, (and most likely have a nap). Drivers will rarely find themselves in a traffic jam, but with both forward and reverse gears, they will be able to get themselves out of trouble with ease. Rubber wheels and the near silent electric motor mean slipping unobtrusively around the garden will be a breeze. Watch out, Fido. Kids start putting that pocket money away, these little beauties sell for the bargain price of $649, not a bad price to have a new Bimmer in the garage.

WRC FOR SUZUKI After several years of success in the Junior WRC series, Suzuki is increasing its motorsport activities and will campaign a car in the World Rally Championship for the first time in 2008. Preparations for Suzuki’s WRC debut are well underway and a European test of the WRC-spec SX4 rally car is scheduled for next month.As one of the more innovative motor manufacturers the Suzuki marquee will be a welcome addition to the FIA World Rally Championship when it enters for the first time in its history later this year. Suzuki will participate on a test basis in two rounds this year; in the Rallye de France in October, and the Rally GB in November.

DAMM RAIN Rain over much of the State in recent weeks has the lawn and garden in tip top condition, the cobwebs have been knocked off the clothes dryer, we now know where the holes in the roof are, we were going to fix some time back, the Galoshes have been checked for Redbacks and the dams are starting to fill. Weather conditions play a huge part in the way motorists should alter their driving patterns on suburban roads and highways. Varying road surfaces can change in the inclement conditions, sometimes all in the space of a few hundred metres. While it may be perfectly safe to sit on the freeway’s 100km/h speed limit in dry, clear conditions, once the heavens open circumstances change rapidly and driving patterns need to be altered considerably to suit the new conditions. Of course, brake capability, visibility and vehicle handling are all diminished in wet and slippery conditions. In the wet, tyre choice is critical. As some of the most important pieces of equipment on a motor vehicle, they are all that keeps the driver and passengers in contact with the bitumen. Worn or damaged tyres in greasy conditions exacerbate handling difficulties and add considerably to braking distances. Speed limits are set to advise drivers what is safe in favourable weather patterns; they do not indicate that the shown speed could in fact be highly dangerous in deteriorating conditions.


You see them around, usually when you are caught in city traffic, you know the one’s, bumper stickers that read “If you can read this, you’re too close”? Well one of the major concerns for Mr Joe Average and the boys in blue is the dangerous habit of tailgating. Tailgating is not a new problem, it’s back in the headlines following some serious accidents recently, tailgating not only increases the likelihood of a serious accident through the decrease in practical braking distances in the very real chance of something going wrong, both drivers become agitated particularly the car in front with a rear view mirror full of the offending driver and a loss of concentration on the road ahead. Right up there is another highly dangerous habit, that has motoring bodies and Police extremely worried is the many motorists who insist on using a hand-held phone while at the wheel. Tailgating and phoning while driving are activities that are clearly a threat to others. Motorists should leave at least a two-second gap behind the vehicle in front, and more than this in inclement weather. Using hand-held mobile phones at the wheel has the very real potential to lead to disaster; even with proper hands-free kit, talking on the phone while driving is a huge risk. More effective police action and an increase in visible patrol vehicles would help the Government achieve the aim of using hand held phones as socially unacceptable as drink driving of course, the solution lies in our hands. Our roads would be a lot less intimidating, and a good deal safer, if we all gave each other a bit of space. And let’s get into the habit of pulling over and finding somewhere legal and convenient before we answer those “urgent” phone calls.

Accident response

when electricity is involved


By Mark Mulligan, Country Energy’s chief safety officer Recent accidents around the state involving vehicles colliding with power poles has prompted Country Energy to issue a safety caution to drivers. When a live powerline contacts a vehicle an electrical current can flow through the vehicle, radiating through the ground outwards from the vehicle. Anyone trying to leave the vehicle, or approach it, is at risk of electrocution. In most instances when a vehicle collides with a power pole the lines remain suspended but in the event a line does come down a few simple safety measures can ensure no one is electrocuted. First of all, all powerlines should be treated as being alive whether they are hanging from a pole or have been contacted underground. It’s generally safe to stay on or in a vehicle that has made contact with a powerline as long as the driver does not touch the vehicle and the ground at the same time. Touching anything that is in contact with the ground could be fatal as with even the slightest contact, the body will complete the electrical circuit to the ground. If a driver or passengers are forced to leave a vehicle that has come into contact with powerlines they should jump clear so that no part of the body touches the vehicle and ground at the same time, shuffling at least eight metres away. Country Energy and the police should be called immediately when a vehicle comes into contact with a powerline or underground cable. We’ll isolate the power to make the site safe. Bystanders should not attempt rescues or try to push vehicles away from power poles if lines are down as they too can be electrocuted. For electrical safety or energy saving tips visit, or drop into one of our friendly Customer Service Centres and pick up a brochure.

Easter’s nearly on us By Neil Dunn A well-earned break for most. Like half the folk of Canberra I’ll be heading for the coast.

6292 9061 Motoring

I just don’t get ‘road rage’ It does no good, just harm I’d rather take the smart approach, the one I call ‘road calm’.

So if the traffic’s slow, Don’t let yourself get tense, Just tolerate the idiots and drive with common sense.

Oh, let the “doof-doof” in, It’s clear he cannot drive, But with a helpful attitude we’ll all remain alive.

So have a Good Friday And think of what I’ve said … ‘Cause there is just one bloke I know who got up from the dead!

The weekend should be fun A fillip for the soul, But Tuesday we’ll be reading of the National Road Toll. It sounds a trifle grim I hope that I’m wrong too, But if you are the driver then it’s really up to you!

Out of Canberra

Two hours to Bateman’s Bay, But please, for heaven’s sake, It’s better to take three than try that risky overtake!

Get out of town! Come to historic Goulburn — Australia’s First Inland City for your next conference or group outing.

Just listen to a tape, Enjoy the countryside, And if you get there two hours late there should still be a tide.

For more information on: guided city tours, themed heritage tours & modern conference facilities call the

Goulburn Visitor Information Centre on freecall 1800 353 646 or email





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The Word on the Weather: Gungahlin records a cloudy, dry March.



By Darren Giles Weather conditions across Gungahlin during March were generally warm and cloudy, but rainfall remained below average. Nights were mild, with an average minimum of 12.2 degrees, the same as in March 2006. The warmest night for the month occurred on March 4, when the temperature was a sticky 20.7 degrees, while on March 31, it dropped to a cold 5.0 degrees. Days were generally warm and cloudy, with an average maximum of 26.0 degrees; down slightly on the average of 26.8 degrees recorded last March. The highest temperature for the month was a hot 34.0 degrees, on March 4, while on March 30 cloudy skies and gusty NW winds combined to keep Gungahlin’s maximum temperature to just 15.9 degrees. Winds at the Weather Centre averaged at 3.4 km/h during March, with the strongest gust for the month 45.1 km/h from the NNW, recorded on March 24. Rain fell in Gungahlin on 9 days during March but, overall, the total for the month was a disappointing 37.3mm. This compares to the 33.3mm of rain that fell on 5 days during March 2006. Falls in other parts of Canberra was also disappointing, with 35.4mm recorded at Canberra AP, 29.0mm at Tuggeranong and 53.3mm at nearby Tidbinbilla. Gungahlin’s total rainfall so far in 2007 stands at just 83.6mm, well down on the 119.2mm that fell over the same period last year. Gungahlin Weather Centre Around Canberra – March 2007

Gungahlin Canberra AP Tuggeranong Tidbinbilla

Ave Min 12.2 12.6 12.6 11.0

Ave Max 26.0 25.8 25.8 25.3

Low Temp High Temp 5.0 34.0 3.9 35.1 2.8 33.7 7.2 33.0

Rainfall 37.3mm 35.4mm 29.0mm 53.3mm

Canberra’s April outlook:

Current indications are for a slightly warmer and sunnier April than normal across Canberra. Daytime temperatures should average at around 21 degrees, and nights at 6 degrees. Despite the sunnier than normal outlook, rainfall prospects are good. Canberra is likely to receive around 65mm of rain for the month, well up on the longer term average of just 48mm

Factory farming AUSSI ACT


The Australian Model Code of Practice for the Welfare of Animals: Pigs is currently under review. A ‘public consultation’ on the draft Code occurred in mid-2006, but very few even knew about that opportunity to express their views. Both the current Code and the draft revised Code permit cruel pig industry practices. The federal and State Agriculture Ministers will make a decision in April on the draft Code - and therefore the conditions pigs can be kept in for decades to come. It is important that the Ministers know what you think about factory farming of pigs before they make that decision. Below is a suggested letter which may assist you to write to your own State or Territory Minister. It will be more impressive if you write your own letter, in your own words, but the following is provided to assist you. Please do it for the pigs.

The ACT Government offers subsidised GardenSmart water tune-ups to ACT residents for only $30!* February/March 2007 Issue No. 28

During the GardenSmart visit, a qualified horticulturist provides practical advice about garden design, plant selection, watering, maintenance and much more. GardenSmart participants also receive a $50 rebate on water-saving products for the garden. For more information call ActewAGL on

6242 1111 or visit apply. Available only to AC T proper

ties con

nected to

The Australian Sustainable Schools Initiative (AuSSI) is a partnership of the Australian Government, the States and Territories that supports schools to work towards a sustainable future. The AuSSI is a whole-of-school approach, to improve the school’s management of resources and facilities including energy, waste, water, biodiversity, landscape design, products and materials. It also addresses educational, social and economic issues associated with the sustainable management of a school and the school community. The national website is au/education/aussi

What is the AUSSI ACT?

Saving water in your garden made easy!

ions *Condit

What is the AUSSI?

. ACTEW Corp oration’s water network


Dear I know that the draft ‘Code of Practice for the Welfare of Animals – The Pig’ is being reviewed, and that as a member of the ‘Primary Industries Ministerial Council’ you will decide on the housing and husbandry conditions that will affect the lives of millions of pigs. Unfortunately the draft revised Code does not provide any significant improvements. Both the current and proposed Code of Practice denies pigs’ behavioural and physical needs due to the prolonged confinement for particularly the breeding sows kept in tiny stalls and farrowing crates. That extreme confinement and painful mutilations inflicted upon piglets - such as tail docking and teeth clipping, are unacceptable to me. As a consumer I will choose not to purchase products from factory-farmed pigs, and I know that other Australians will take the same action as they learn of the conditions pigs’ are subjected to. Please reject the draft pig Code and instead introduce enforceable standards that will provide pigs with the opportunity to express their natural behaviours. These sensitive and curious animals deserve your consideration. Yours sincerely, Federal: The Hon Peter McGauran, MP Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Parliament House Canberra New South Wales Hon. Ian MacDonald, MP Minister for Primary Industries Parliament House Macquarie Street, Sydney. NSW. 2000 Australian Capital Territory The Hon. John Hargreaves, MP Minister for the Territory and Municipal Services Legislative Assembly, Civic Canberra ACT 2600

AuSSI ACT is the name of the AUSSI being implemented in ACT schools. The AuSSI ACT is managed by the Department of Territory and Municipal Services (TAMS) in partnership with • ACT Department of Education and Training • Catholic Education Office • Australian Independent Schools Association A Sustainable Schools Coordinator works closely with schools to encourage a whole school approach, set measurable social, educational, environmental and economic outcomes and develop a school environmental management plan (SEMP). The AUSSI ACT website is www.

AUSSI ACT Pilot in 2006 The AUSSI ACT began as a pilot in 2006 which was a cross sectoral initiative involving Department of Education and Training, the Catholic Education Office and the Association of Independent Schools Thirteen government and seven non government schools were involved in the 2006 ACT pilot Australian Sustainable Schools Initiative (AuSSI) In 2007, the initiative is open to all ACT schools The Sustainable Schools Initiative has five focus areas: curriculum, water, waste, energy and biodiversity and complements the new Curriculum framework for ACT schools Preschool to year 10 The twenty pilot schools were supported to conduct water, waste and energy audits and to use the information from the audits to develop a School Environmental Management Plan (SEMP) Schools include the following in their SEMPS: -

Principals message School vision Curriculum Waste Water Energy Biodiversity Community Partnerships Purchasing

Schools were also offered professional development for staff on educating for sustainability aligned to the new ACT Curriculum Framework.


program and build a sustainable school.

Visit the Australian Sustainable Schools Initiative (AuSSI) website. This website contains information to assist students, teachers and parents in making their school more environmentally sustainable by participating in the AUSSI (The Australian Sustainable Schools Initiative) . AUSSI is a partnership of the Australian Government, the States and Territories that supports schools to work towards a sustainable future. The AuSSI ACT pilot began in 2006 with twenty local schools and it is now available to all schools in the ACT.

The Humanitarian  

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