I have spent the majority of my life living on Boonwurrung and Wurundjeri country as I would like to take the opportunity to thank the ancestors of all Indigenous peoples whose land I have lived on, visited, connected with and worked on over my life.
From an early age I have spent as much time as possible outdoors with numerous family holidays camping, time spent in our backyard and local parks, and journeys with Cubs and Scouts as I grew older. Camping has always been a passion for me, and from this grew a respect for nature and country. Walking on country barefoot and physically connecting with country was something that I have done from childhood but only realised the importance of in my later years.
To me outdoor education represents learning opportunities for relationship skills. It gives us time for slow pedagogy, to learn about connections between people, communities and countries. It teaches us about relationships and helps us reconnect with the world that supports and nourishes us.
At Indigicate I am the Director of programs. I have been working with Indigicate from the beginning first helping out Shawn when he was a sole trader and becoming the first employee of Indigicate when the company was formed. I am passionate about working towards reconciliation and designing programs that allow participants the opportunity to connect. Over my journey I have learnt about the role ‘white fellas’ have in walking the path of reconciliation with Indigenous mob and continue to learn and walk.
A Weilwan & Gamilaray woman through my Grandmothers line with Irish Heritage through my mothers father. Having grown up in the outdoors most of my early childhood, living on the land with my family and travelling to many places throughout Australia I formed a love for Country, for the beauty of our diversity both among First peoples of these lands and the multicultural Australia. I remember how it is to be a child, a teenager and to remain connected to these years within myself. Being in touch with my heritage and my childhood self, enables me to advocate respectfully in creating change for our future generations. Supporting people to grow in the outdoors and reconnect and connect deeper, for me is a natural passion and joy. I feel honoured to support communities to come together in Co-design and develop understandings to create strengths in reconciling our past histories. I feel It’s on all of our shoulders to help create understanding to enable healthier futures for all through working together.
My role is to develop connections and systems that encourage the growth of schools programs inline with our core values of respect, belonging, generosity and knowledge. A key to doing this is mentoring and leading our staff through their own growth and having a sustainable program model that keeps relationships at the heart.
To inspire others through engaging with our natural world and build within them connections that will create healthy, respectful and resilient communities.
In 2003 I found my place and passion. I commenced training and working in the outdoor education field, this was a changing point for me and one that I have continued to grow in since. I truly believe in the benefits of outdoor education and how empowering journeys through the natural world can be for a young person finding their way.
I am fortunate to have been able to spend the past 20 years gaining experience and developing skills in working in the outdoors across a range of activities including training future leaders. The latter has allowed me to work closely with a class of students each year as they complete their training and in turn participate on a year long journey of self development. To see their growth over the year is rewarding and inspiring.
I grew up in Blackburn South, Victoria within Wurundjeri Country.
I love to share knowledge and adventures with people and see how it helps us grow. Guiding people through the unexpected and keeping them safe mentally and physically gives me a great sense of purpose. I have always loved working in natural spaces, I always come back from a program feeling rejuvenated and having learnt something new from Country. It's a relationship with the land- I should feel tired from talking and walking for 5 days straight but I'm more energetic and spiritually fulfilled than ever.
I appreciate that I have been supported and given the opportunity by friends and family to experience Country as I have. Directly and indirectly allowing me to form strong relationships with outdoor spaces. My role in outdoor education is to help people create their own positive relationship with Country, to give them a space to be themselves and grow as I have. I want to be there for those moments of hesitation and self doubt and help guide people through to success and self-worth.
I view outdoor education as a way of letting the world be our teacher. The hidden curriculum where we have moments of quiet and pondering is why I chose this career.