The experience has been life changing…

For the cohort, connection is critical as they return to everyday life, knowing there’ll be someone who understands their leadership journey. For nbn’s Tom O’Dea, it’s been life changing. He shares his experience with us. 

My name is Tom O’Dea and I am the Head of nbn Local for Regional, Rural and Remote NSW. I live on Ngunnawal Land, in Yass. I have been fortunate enough to be a part of the ARLF Regenerate Capital Region cohort one program over the past five months, a program that has challenged me like no other. 

I came into program with an idea of what I would be doing and learning but the significant impact this program has had upon me was well beyond my wildest expectations. While it has been a great opportunity to meet and collaborate with some of the Capital Region’s finest humans, the Regeneration, for me, has had to start from within. 

There was an exercise we did in week one that has shaken me to the very core of who I am as a person and the amount of insight that has provided me has been the most significant of the past few decades of my life. While I was not ready for this moment, it was clearly time to tackle some of it now and I will need to continue to do so for some time ahead of me. “Knowledge is power” and now that I have some of these additional insights, into myself and what is driving me, acting on this is the most important thing for me from here.

My Community Engagement Manager team work closely with emergency services before, during and after an event and there are a range of nbn assets that can be deployed to emergency evacuation centres and other community hubs to provide temporary access to voice and broadband services. These include mobile satellite trucks and satellite ‘fly-away’ kits that are easily moved and setup to where the need is greatest. Temporary emergency management solutions are only available for deployment in emergency situations and can be requested by emergency services via the state/territory emergency management processes.

Having a stronger connection to the emergency services personnel on the course will hopefully lead to a better understanding of nbn and the way we can help with temporary comms during a disaster.

I have built some great connections with other participants and facilitators throughout the course, and I honestly cannot believe I have only known these fine individuals for just eight days.

Gratitude is important to me so I would like to thank the ARLF team Grant Cameron and Erin Chesney, and facilitators Ali Wass, Karim Haddad, Benny Callaghan, Mish (Michelle) Richmond, Mel Nicholson, Gus Haddad and Hamish Reid. You are all wonderful leaders and I really appreciate what you do for us on our self-discovery and leadership journey. You are helping craft better and more impactful people that will ultimately benefit us all.

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