Author Archives: Jenny Gates

Australia’s New High Commissioner to Canada

We are delighted to welcome Australia’s new High Commissioner to Canada, Her Excellency Natasha Smith. High Commissioner Smith is a senior career officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and was most recently First Assistant Secretary, Multilateral Development and Finance Division. She has previously served in Jakarta and at Australia’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York. High Commissioner Smith looks forward to furthering the #AusCan relationship, and we look forward to more formally welcoming her in Winnipeg when her schedule allows.

Although we didn’t get the opportunity to personally meet the outgoing High Commissioner Tony Negus, we did meet with others during his time in the big chair and appreciate the efforts made to extend the HC’s reach all the way to Manitoba.

Burrumbuttock Hay Run

This post was originally published in the February 2018 issue of the monthly newsletter of The Down Under Club of Winnipeg, The Southern Yarn – http://downunderclub.mb.ca/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Yarn2018_02-Feb.pdf

On January 26, 2018, the 13th Burrumbuttock Hay Run headed west to provide essential resources to drought-stricken farmers across regional New South Wales and Queensland. What exactly is the hay run and how did it get started?

Photo: http://hayrunners.com/index.php/photo-gallery/

The Burrumbuttock Hay Run (BHR) was founded by Brendan Farrell in 2014. When he heard about a farmer in Bourke, NSW, struggling in the drought, Brendan offered to take him a truck load of hay to help him out.

There have now been 13 successful hay runs delivering donated hay to drought-affected farmers all over NSW and Queensland.

BHR is about mates helping mates in times of need. Farmers impacted by drought often struggle to ask for help, and many also battle mental health issues because of the financial strain of trying to keep the farm afloat.

Although the hay delivered only provides temporary relief, it’s about showing fellow Australians that someone cares about them. Awareness and education are also important for Brendan and the team because they believe “Aussie farmers are critical to our future in Australia”.

Drought doesn’t just impact farmers. It also impacts local businesses and schools within that community. Although the primary focus is taking hay to farmers, runs have also included trucks of dog food, fruit/vegies, pantry essentials, toiletries, household items, and other donations from community groups and local businesses across Australia.

Burrumbuttock Hay Runners arriving in Ilfracombe. Photo: www.weeklytimesnow.com.au

All the hay is donated from generous farmers across Australia, and money constantly being sought to fuel the trucks transporting the hay.

No one in the BHR is paid a wage. Everyone volunteers, including all the truck drivers who also donate the use of their trucks and machinery to load and unload the hay.

To give you an idea of what’s involved, the following are stats from a run in 2016 from Burrumbuttock (southern NSW) to Ilfracombe (central-west Qld) — 258 trucks, 406 trailers, 6 million dollars worth of hay, 1,800 km travelled, $2,500 to $3,000 in fuel and other costs per truck, more than 13,500 rounds and square bales of hay, 800 farmers feeding 300,000 animals, trucks from NSW, QLD, VIC, SA and TAS, and more than 500 volunteers.

Members of the Down Under Club of Winnipeg with the Burrumbuttock Hay Runners banner. Photo: Charlie Powell.

The motto of the Burrumbuttock Hay Runners is ‘keeping the dream alive’. They believe in doing whatever it takes to help keep the dream alive for Aussie farmers. And for that, we say THANK YOU!

For more info or to make a donation, visit http://hayrunners.com/.

You are invited to attend …

Thanks to Winnipeg immigration lawyer Bashir Khan for bringing this event to our attention.

The Winnipeg Branch of the Canadian International Council is holding an event on Tuesday October 31 at 5:30 pm, at the Jekyll & Hyde Pub, 437 Stradbrook Avenue.

Dr Wil Hoverd will speak on “Five Eyes” from a New Zealand perspective. The smallest Five Eyes country has a thing or two to teach Canada about how a small country can hit above its weight in the world.

Free to attend and no RSVP is required. Everyone is welcome to attend.

The “Five Eyes” refer to an intelligence alliance comprising Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States. These countries are bound by the multilateral UKUSA Agreement, a treaty for joint cooperation in signals intelligence.

AFL Grand Final in Winnipeg!

Crows or Tigers? Who will win the AFL GF?

Join us on Friday September 29 from 9:30 pm at Boston Pizza on Henderson Highway in Winnipeg.

Members of the DUCW will join AFL fans and players to watch the greatest game on the AFL calendar.

We will likely go until around 2:00 am on Saturday morning, so catch up on your sleep now because it’s going to be a fantastic event not to be missed!

Possum Magic

Woolworths is co-launching a limited-edition of colourful $2 coins featuring characters from the iconic Australian children’s book, Possum Magic.

The coins are minted by The Royal Australian Mint but will be released to the public through Woolworths tills and feature Possum Magic’s main character, Hush, along with a colourful “magical dust” rings.

A limited-edition Possum Magic Coin Collection album will also be sold through Woolworths and the Royal Australian Mint. The coins are designed to mark the Children’s Book Council of Australia Children’s Book Week.

“We hope the release of the coin collection provides more opportunities for grandparents, parents and children alike to engage with this iconic story and perhaps even try recreating the famous dishes contained in the book,” said Woolworths Program Manager, Sarah De La Mare.

The first $2 design in the coin series has already been released into Woolworths registers. The second design will be released 22 August 2017 and the final design 29 August 2017. The coin collection album can be purchased for AUD $15 from Woolworths supermarkets and the Royal Australian Mint.

Thanks to Charlie Powell for bringing this to our attention.