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December Alumni Connect

19 December 2022

By Julia Strang Manager, Alumni Engagement

With the end of the year upon us, we are well and truly in planning mode for 2023. Our plan for next year, amongst other things, is to host a series of smaller alumni events across the country – particularly targeting WA, SA and Tassie. So we are working on finalising dates at the moment and plan to release an Alumni Events Calendar in January. Stay tuned.  

Speaking of planning, I have been working closely with Laura Cala – our newest member of the Foundation’s Alumni team, as we plan for next year. Laura joined the ARLF in late October and will be dividing her time to support both the LARC Team (Leading Australian Resilient Communities) and our Alumni in a Stakeholder Engagement role. She is such a fabulous addition to our team and it’s lovely to watch her start to fully grasp the depth and breadth of our alumni.  

Welcoming new graduates to the network 

We’ve seen a heap of Foundation participants graduate into our alumni network recently. 

I had the pleasure of meeting ARLP Cohort 28 in Melbourne in November on their last session, and also attended their very joyous graduation celebrations.  

But the highlight of my time with them was listening to some of the cohort share their learnings and insights from their ARLP journey. This is such a valuable session to attend as it helps me better understand the full impact of the program and the incredibly strong, lifelong connection that this program helps to create between participants.  

And although we can do much online these days, there’s still nothing that quite compares to meeting face to face. I was again reminded of that while meeting C28.  Just the conversations with participants – and their families. If I could attend every ARLF graduation ceremony, I would!  

But unfortunately, I can’t so I wasn’t there to welcome in person 19 participants from the Regenerate Snowy Valleys Leadership Program in early December. For those of you who don’t know much about the Regenerate program, it’s a place-based leadership development program that enables people from bushfire impacted regions to revive and reinvigorate their communities.  

We also welcomed new alumni into the network from Tassie as 17 participants completed the Drought Resilience Leaders Development program. It’s so exciting to see our network grow in Tassie.  And of course, our Drought Resilience Leaders Mentoring program – Rd 3 also concluded with 37 mentoring pairs graduating into our alumni. Check out a story here to read about the personal impact of the program from a participant perspective.  

So – needless to say – our alumni network is growing.  

Mini Alumni Catch ups  

As mentioned, it’s great to see our alumni numbers in Tassie growing. And while in Launceston, our Program Manager from the Learning team, Simone Carroll-Germech, caught up with a few of our Alumni in Launceston at the start of December. See the photo below. When our team are on the road, we try to use the opportunity to connect with alumni where possible. Thanks to Simone and to those who attended.   We are planning for another alumni gathering to be held in Tassie next year.  So stay tuned for dates.  

Alumni catch up in Inverell – January 12

ARLF staff member and Project Lead, Catherine McGufficke, has plans to meet with local alumni in Inverell in northern NSW on January 12. We know it’s still well and truly in the thick of holiday time, but if you’re in the region, or on holidays there at that time perhaps, Catherine would love to connect with you. If you’d love to attend, please reach out to Catherine at catherinem@rural-leaders.org.au and let her know.   

Where: The Welders Dog, Otho Street Inverell 

When: Thursday 12 January at 4pm 

Christmas Wishes and may a fabulous 2023 await you all… 

Wishing you all the merry festive season and a happy and healthy 2023.  

We’d also like to acknowledge that for some, this time of year can be incredibly stressful and not necessarily a season to look forward to.  

Whatever the Christmas season is for you, we hope you find some time to relax and the chance for you to do something that brings you comfort and peace. 

We look forward to connecting with you all in 2023.