Project Wild Thing

Project-Wild-Thing-Web-bannerB1

Project Wild Thing is a film led movement to get more kids (and their folks!) outside and reconnect with nature. The film is an ambitious, feature-length documentary that takes a funny and revealing look at a complex issue, the increasingly disparate connection between children and nature. Take a look at the trailer here.

Filmmaker David Bond is a worried man. His kids’ waking hours are dominated by a cacophony of marketing, and a screen dependence threatening to turn them into glassy-eyed zombies. Like city kids everywhere, they spend way too much time indoors.

Project Wild Thing is a response to kids’ addiction to iPads and consoles, getting obese and insidiously depressed in the process, and parents letting it happen. Growing thoughts that the outdoors are dangerous, pointless and irrelevant. “We think we’ve outgrown nature,” says Bond.  He crafted a a diagram (below) breaking down the barriers to playing outdoor and promoting nature as a brand, so the kids can “get” it and”choose” it; with boyish enthusiasm, he devises wacky ad strategies through billboards and social media to spread the good word (see image below).

m-53ecd851e912d

Project Wild Thing is much more than a film, this is a growing movement of organisations and individuals who care deeply about the need for nature connected, free-range, roaming and outdoor playing kids in the 21st century.

There are lots of great ideas to inspire outdoor play.  I like Nature Play’s list of 51 things to do before you are 12, and there are also Wild Time vouchers that can be may be used anywhere outside, in the woods, up a tree, by a stream, in the park, in the mud….download your voucher here.

Screen Shot 2014-08-26 at 6.13.19 pm

 

For more inspiration, download the free Wild Time App, or follow these guys on facebook Project Wild Thing, Nature Play QLD.

If you live in Brisbane, then today is your lucky day!  Nature Play QLD are hosting a free screening of the movie Project Wild Thing at 12noon this Friday 29st August at Palace Barracks Cinema.  Yes FREE!!! and you get a chance to meet the film maker David Bond – email rsvp@shoutcommunications.com.au for your tickets.

See you on the outside.

Posted in Brisbane Events, Children, Community, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

show some heart for HeartKids

My friend has a dream that I would like to share with you. A dream that no child is born with an untreatable heart condition.

Daniel at 6 weeks old recovering from his first open heart surgery

Daniel at 6 weeks old recovering from his first open heart surgery

In 2011 my friend’s nephew, Daniel, was born with a severe and complex heart condition that required multiple open heart operations.  Daniel spent the first six months of his life in hospital. Everyday fighting for his life.

Six babies, just like Daniel, are born with a heart defect in Australia every day. It’s the biggest killer of Australian kids under one years of age. There is no known cure. Thanks to medical advances over 32,000 adults have survived with a heart defect since childhood.

HeartKids Queensland provide support, encouragement and hope to families of children with Heart Disease.  They raise awareness and critical funding for life-saving research into the causes, treatment and prevention of heart disease.

HeartKids provide practical support to families; a friendly chat, prepared frozen meals, care packs and emotional support.  Daniel’s mum Karen credits Heartkids Queensland to getting them through this terrible time. “Daniel is doing brilliantly now and a lot of that is to do with HeartKids.  They exceeded my expectations with their unconditional generosity, and now it is time to give back.”  But Karen needs your help!

HeartKids have entered the Sunsuper Dreams competition for the month of August, to win $5,000 and they urgently need your vote!  It only takes a moment to vote, click here.  

Daniel at 2.5 years old walking for the first time independently

Daniel at 2.5 years old walking for the first time independently

Learn more about HeartKids here.

Sunsuper’s Dreams for a Better World competition is all about doing something positive for the community in a meaningful way. Each month a $5,000 grant is awarded to the dream with the most public votes.

Learn more about Sunsuper Dreams here.

Here are some other easy ways you can help HeartKids:
Follow HeartKids on facebook or twitter
Join the HeartKids Bridge to Brisbane team
Volunteer for HeartKids
Host a cuppa for HeartKids this August / Septemer

Posted in Australian charity, Causes, Children, Community, GIVING, KINDNESS, Pay it forward | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

drink coffee, do good, action against homelessness

cafesmartThis Friday 8th August 2014, take action against homeless and buy your Friday coffee from a cafe across Australia participating in CafeSmart 2014 and they’ll donate a $1 from every coffee sold.  To find your local do-gooder cafe, click here.

Some cafes that you already might know are signed up….

Brisbane: Di Bella Coffee (Bowen Hills), Hotel Urban (Spring Hill), Thrive on George (CBD), John Mills Himself (CBD), Toby’s Estate Brisbane (CBD), Campos Coffee Brisbane (Fortitude Valley) Expresso Train (Nundah) and Pasta Pantry (Rosalie), Bunker Coffee (Milton and my favourite!) Sydney: The Cook and Baker (Bondi Junction) Lize & Bath Cafe (CBD), The Q on Harris (Ultimo), Oliver Brown World Square, Greenheart Expresso (CBD), BangBang Cafe and Lucky Pickle (Surrey Hills), Cafe Morso (Pyrmont). Melbourne: STREAT (all locations), Cherry & Twigs (CBD), Mister Close (CBD) Hub Cafe and Miss Jackson (St Kilda), Alice Nivens, Footscray Milking Station, 30KER65 (Fitzroy). Canberra: Coffee Guru (Erindale and Mawson), Good Brother (Dickson), Little Oink (Cook) and Tranquillo Expresso (Braddon). Perth: Yelo (Trigg), Dimattina (Osbourne Park), Mercado Negro (CBD), Jessie’s Cafe and Roastery (Myaree).

streetsmart_logoAll funds raised go to StreetSmart who take action against homelessness, raising funds and awareness for small, ‘hard to reach’ grassroots services and projects. Projects that provide critical services and emergency aid as well as promoting social inclusion, empowerment and sustainable change for people who are homeless or at risk. 100% of donations raised through Streetsmart events are distributed in the form of grants. To date they have raised $3,031,680 and supported 843 grassroots projects.  Like what they do on facebook or follow them on twitter.  Dont forget to post a selfie Friday using hashtag #drinkcoffeedogood and donate direct to the cause here.

Would you like your local café to be involved? then download this flyer, print it off and hand it over and encourage them to get involved.

Posted in Australian charity, Brisbane Events, Children, Community, CSR, Ethical Shopping, GIVING, Homelessness, KINDNESS, Pay it forward, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Charity Polo Day – Sunday 3rd August 2014

CarderCupPolo

Last year, Sandra Carder organised her first charity polo day. There were 14 teams, over 1000 spectators, and most importantly funds were raised for charity Destiny Rescue, directly helping rescue young Cambodian girl Sreyta Sok Hang.

Sandra tells me that Sreyta lost her six brothers and her father, and as a young girl was forced to leave her mother and live on the streets, where she was subjected to sexual exploitation and human trafficking.  Sreyta is 14 now and living in a Destiny Rescue rescue home and is learning new skills and living in a safe and loving environment.

Destiny Rescue exists to rescue children from red light districts, brothels and sexually abusive situations. They operate in five countries: Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar (Burma), and India, and rely on the generoisity of the community, fundraising events and donations to fund their life saving work.

Sandra heard about Destiny Rescue through a friend of a friend, and was so inspired by the cause, she repurposed her family’s annual polo event that had been running for 25 years, The Carder Cup, to support this very worthy cause, Destiny Rescue.

“I have a four year old daughter, and to think there is a need to rescue children from the sex industry is horrific to me. Even if I am just doing a tiny bit, I know I am doing something”.  Sandra sells real estate by day, and is organising the next charity polo day, Sunday 3rd August, by night.

The 2014 Destiny Rescue Polo Match is being held on privately owned  ‘Alsace’, the country estate of polo aficionado and Yellow Cab Managing Director, Neill Ford and his wife Trisha.

Entry starts at $20, and there are car boot picnic options, or seats and tables in a corporate marquee.  There will plenty of polo, raffles, silent auctions, children’s entertainment and much more.  To book your ticket/s contact Sandra on 0418 2222 57 or email scarder@aston.net.au

Dress: what does one wear to the polo?  Sandra says anything goes; jeans, hat, jacket or dress.  The offical Alsace Polo website says “sophisticated and tailored day wear” and that “Polo is a stylish outdoor event and subject to weather. Linen jackets, ties and sundresses are valid options. Footwear should be practical – high heels are not a smart choice due to grassed areas for the majority of the event. Racing style hats will look out of place, though more casual headwear is often worn”

Make a donation to Destiny Rescue here, follow the charity polo match event details on the official facebook page and see the full event invite below.

Destiny Rescue Polo Match 2014 V2

Posted in Brisbane Events, Causes, Children, Community, GIVING, KINDNESS, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The World’s Biggest Garage Sale – yes in Brisbane

I am so privileged to introduce my guest blogger, Yasmin. Yasmin writes her own blog Previvor, and she is one amazing lady.  Yasmin is brave, and she is beautiful. Her passion is helping people and this is what she has planned next month – The Worlds Biggest Garage Sale, yes, in Brisbane on Saturday 12 July – and she needs your help….please read on, like her facebook page, share this post, donate to the cause.

WBGS_2013_2In 2013, I came up with this little idea to sell some of our unwanted household items in a garage sale. In just a few short weeks, the garage was overflowing and I found myself organising the inaugural Brisbane “World’s Biggest Garage Sale”. Among the 50 volunteers involved and in just one day, we raised over $15,000 to help fund the cutting edge research being undertaken at the Mater into melanoma, breast, ovarian and prostate cancer.

After the amazing success of what started out as a simple yard sale, in 2014 I rallied (OK, I might have begged a little) some friends to join my official WBGS committee. With a supportive group of 12 friends, coupled with a team of more than 100 volunteers, we are doing it all again and this time we’re aiming high, hoping to raise over $100,000 in 2014.

WorldsBiggestGarageSale2014

Smiling for Smiddy was founded 9 years ago following the tragic death of popular Brisbane triathlete and physiotherapist Adam Smiddy at just 26 years of age from an aggressive form of melanoma. Following Adam’s death, his friends decided to ride their pushbikes the 1600km from Brisbane to Townsville to honour Adam’s memory and raise some much needed funds to assist in the research efforts required to combat some of the most prevalent men’s and women’s cancers that affect the Australian community. 9 years later, the Smiddy riders are still riding, and along the way have raised over $5 million to fund cancer research.

YasminGrigaliunasA mother of two young girls, I have recently undergone a Prophylactic Bilateral Mastectomy, with a view to cheating an almost likely diagnosis of breast cancer in her future.   Rather than be one of the many women in my family who has either lost their lives, or their breasts to the disease, (including my own mother who was diagnosed at just 44) I decided that being proactive was the best option for me and my family. As a Previvor, I now dedicate some of my time to raising money to support cancer research. I have documented and shared my personal journey at www.previvor.com.au

The 2014 Worlds Biggest Garage Sale will be held on Saturday 12 July 2014 commencing at 6:00am.  An antiques and collectibles AUCTION will also take place on Friday 11 July 2014, from 6:00pm.

Venue: Our Lady of The Assumption School 9 Hurdcotte Street, Enoggera, Brisbane

We have thousands of products, including; clothes, toys, furniture, whitegoods, house-hold items, books, sporting goods, LP records, antiques & collectibles and more – we have EVERYTHING!

If you would like further information, please contact Yasmin Grigaliunas directly via email yasming@schoolhours.com.au or mobile 0409 471 170 to find out more information.

Follow the event on Facebook: www.facebook.com/worldsbiggestgaragesale

Posted in Breast Cancer, Brisbane Events, Causes, Community, Ethical Shopping, GIVING, KINDNESS, Pay it forward | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Bread and Butter Project #socent

I have been pouring over the 2014 Social Enterprise Awards finalists, and it is a very impressive and inspiring list indeed! It was great to see some of my favourite social enterprises Expresso Train, Who Gives a Crap and the team at Thankyou in the list.

TheBreadandButterProjectOne Sydney based social enterprise I loved learning about, is The Bread & Butter Project, a wholesale, artisan, social enterprise bakery providing training and employment for refugees and asylum seekers. The Founders of the successful, privately owned Bourke Street Bakery established The Bread & Butter Project when they realised that baking was the ideal profession for people who were hungry for hands-on work.  The bakery supplies a range of delicous handmade loaves and pastries to a selection of cafes, retail outlets and growers markets in Sydney.  TBBP currently employs seven full-time trainees from Burma, Siere Leone and Thailand, and will continue to stagger the introduction of new trainees as bakery sales grow. A team of professional bakers oversee the twelve-month padi trainship and the Bourke Street Bakery manages the social enterprise.

The project’s bread can be found at more than 100 locations in Sydney, including David Jones. All profits from bread sales are reinvested into the project.

Founder Paul Allam was inspired to set up The Bread & Butter Project following a trip to Mae Sot on the Thai-Burmese border, where at the invitation of a local orphanage Paul taught a group of Karen refugee women how to bake bread and helped establish a social business to support these women and the orphanage.

On returning home, Paul along with his business partner and friend, David McGuinness, decided to use their baking skills and community spirit to set up a social enterprise bakery to empower the disadvantaged in Sydney. Their vision was that Bourke Street Bakery would gift its time, baking and hospitality expertise to establish a wholesale bakery where 100% of the profits would go towards training and employment opportunities for communities in need. Paul, along with the rest of the board is working on a volunteer basis, spreading the goodness and growing The Bread and Butter customer base as “the more bread we sell, the more people we help”.

Some ways you can help:

  • Buy some bread! Click here for stockists.
  • Sell some bread! Contact TBBP to see if you can become a seller.
  • Buy their new cookbook, email here for info on how to buy.
  • Volunteer at one of their Farmer’s Market Stalls and tell the story to interested bread buyers at local markets
  • Make a donation towards capital expense start-up costs
  • Sponsor a trainee’s bakery uniform
  • Tell your friends, share this post, like on facebook, follow them on twitter

To learn more about The Project visit their website or watch the ABC story here “People changing lives on a kneads must basis”

Posted in Community, CSR, Ethical Shopping, GIVING, Pay it forward, Social Enterprise | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

play it forward

macmillarDo you think you are too busy, too young, too old, too poor to be a philanthropist?  Whatever your reason (or excuse), please read on about nine-year-old Mac Millar’s project and how he has made a difference in the lives of some of the poorest children in the world.

In October 2012, young Mac Millar from Brisbane saw “kids from Afghanistan on TV and they never looked like they have much to do” Mac said. ” I love soccer, and I think every kid should be able to play soccer too”.  Mac learned that Afghan children were among the most disadvantaged in the world and he knew immediately what he wanted to do:  “My goal is to help kids who can’t play soccer because they are too poor.”

With a little help from his family, Mac set about raising money to buy soccer balls to send them to Afghanistan.  It turned out to be harder than he thought – but young Mac persisted.

Penelope Wensley AC Governor of Queensland describes Mac’s enthusiasm as “infectious” and his appeals for assistance, through a combination of activities – letter-writing, establishing a special website, using social media, speaking at Rotary clubs, and elsewhere – struck a chord in the community, attracting much interest and media for the project he called “Football. Play it Forward”.

In June 2013, Mac’s dream came true and the 7th Battalion, the Royal Australian Regiment Task Group in Afghanistan along with AusAID Advisors, handed out 100 soccer balls to a local school in Uruzgan province.

mac millar play it forward

The lucky recipients were the children of the then new AusAID-funded Salambaba School in the Mirabad valley, Afghanistan.

Since then Mac has raised tens of thousands of dollars to buy more soccer balls for disadvantaged kids in Afghanistan, Solomon Islands, refugee detention centres all around Australia (including Manus Island and Nauru), Cambodia and Zimbabwe. Mac has written a book about his amazing story (so far) titled, Football. Play it Forward.

In October 2013 Mac won a United Nations Association of Australia, Queensland Community Award for his increbile humanitarian efforts.

But still, Mac is enjoying being a kid. “Soccer is my life,” Mac said. “I love playing it, watching it and learning about it. My goal is to play for Barcalona like Messi and be a famous soccer player. Mum still asks me what job I want when I grow up. She really doesn’t get it.”

For more inspiration watch the offical launch of Mac’s book, buy your own copy of Mac’s book Football. Play it Forwarddonate to buy soccer ball, follow Mac on facebook,  visit his website.

Now, what are you going to do.

Posted in Causes, Children, Community, GIVING, KINDNESS, Pay it forward | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment