Turia Pitt - School of Champions

Turia Pitt - School of Champions

I know that there can be so much crap in the online space, but there is so much good, if you look for it.

So now my Facebook feed and instagram feed is full of beautiful uplifting things - not in a woo-woo what at all - but in real, concrete, actionable - this is really happening right now kind of way.

Right now I am participating in Turia Pitt - 7 day Champion challenge. It is a precursor to her School of Champions Program

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Share the Dignity #itsinthebag Campaign

Hello all - Got a spare bag lying around? I am sure we ALL do, but more on that later

Wow, summer almost here and that means one thing, Christmas craziness is in full swing.

I love Christmas, love it a lot.

From the house decorating, the excuse to catch up with friends for drinks, the choosing of present wrapping paper, the trying of new Christmas dessert recipes and cocktails to the reflection on the birth of one small baby who changed so much.

And for me that is the real thing here - how one seemingly small thing changed so much.

But it does.

So this month's #goodontheground post is focussing on a campaign I came across in my instagram feed from the wonderful team at Share the Dignity

This year has seen (and rightly so) some much needed practical effort, media awareness and leadership from the PM down focussed on the disgraceful state of violence against women. 

Share the Dignity's brief is outlined below

Our aim is to provide homeless and at risk women nationally with sanitary products to allow them a sense of dignity at a time when they need it most
— Share the Dignity

So during the year, they had a great campaign to provide sanitary products to homeless shelters and domestic violence refuges for women in need. These products are often the last to be donated but the first to be needed. And when you are fleeing from abuse or on the street/couch surfing these necessities often become luxuries.

Did you follow the story of the young woman in WA who was arrested for stealing a $6 packet of tampons? That is what she stole, tampons and she was actually arrested for doing so.

I am not advocating shoplifting, but that is truly sad

At Christmas time, it can seem to be so much about money and it is often easy for wealthier people to poo poo consumerism that they see.

However when you don't have a lot of money, you so desperately want to be like everyone else and buy presents for children and people, spending money that you don't have. Not because you are necessarily caught up in a consumer spin cycle, but rather you just want to be the same as everyone else. You just want to give to your children and family - what other people take for granted. Simple gifts at Christmas time.

So as women often put themselves last, making sure they give to all others first, the Share the Dignity organisation has this wonderful campaign called It's in the Bag.  You can read more about it at their website.

My office is a collection point in Dubbo. But there are more and more collection points being established across the country - you have until the 11th December to drop off your bag.

This is the small thing I am talking about here - small things repeated a lot - make a huge difference. 

What do you need to do?

  1. Get that spare bag out of your cupboard that is taking up space
  2. Buy a few sanitary and hygiene items - ie
    1. Pads, Tampons
    2. Shampoo/Conditioner
    3. Subscreen
    4. Lip Blam
    5. Dry Shampoo
    6. Soap
    7. Shower Gel
    8. Bandaids
    9. Cotton Buds
    10. Babywipes
    11. Toothbrush/Toothpaste
    12. Deodorant
  3. Maybe buy a few nice things too - i.e.
    1. Lipgloss
    2. Nail Polish
    3. Handcream
    4. Emery Boards/Nail File
    5. Shower Puff
    6. Foot scrub
    7. Body Scrub
    8. Moisturizer
  4. Drop a little card in there too!
  5. Drop it off at a collection point - locally at Dubbo at the Big Blue Digital Office - nationally, visit the Share the Dignity website for
  6. Sorry no phamaceuticals ( ie panadol ) no food, no alcohol and no razors ( so in my shot below I have removed the chocolate and razors). This is a request from the centres that your bags will be going to. 

It is always the small things. Here is mine with a few ideas for you.


Remember that little baby boy born in a stable 2000 years ago. Believer or not, his story is one of kindness and compassion for ALL regardless of background.

So this Christmas why not #sharethedignity and join the #itsinthebag campaign.

You can make a different to one woman this Christmas and it will mean a lot to her. 

NB. Big Blue Digital - 2/1 Commercial Drive, Blueridge Business Park is an official collection point for the 2015 It's In the Bag Campaign. Bags must be received by the 11th December at the office for distribution. 


Why music makes us feel good

Did you catch Australia Story about 3 weeks ago?

It profiled Jenny Morris ( remember her from the late '80's early 90's?)

A great fun female musician. She was profiled because she wanted to bring awareness to a particular disorder that can affect people, where they start to get spasms in their voicebox, with affects their speaking and singing voice. It is very sad if singing is what you do, as you can no longer sing to the standards ( or at all) that you have done in the past. So effectively her career as a professional singer ended in 2005.

The episode was great, and if you can catch it on iView, I recommend you do.

However this good on the ground post is to highlight the charity work that she does. She is very active still in music, being on the board of APRA, but I was particularly interested in what she actually does for Nordoff Robbins.

Heard of them?

I imagine not.

They are a registered charity that specifically works in the music therapy area. 

What is music therapy?

Well, music has been known to provide a number of brain based benefits for people. We enjoy it, it helps children learn - but if we just look at what it does to the brain, here is a definition.

According to the American Music Therapy Association...

“Music Therapy is the clinical and evidence-based use of music interventions to accomplish individualized goals within a therapeutic relationship by a credentialed professional who has completed an approved music therapy program.”

Why is it so effective? Well this article lists 12 reasons as to why music is so amazing - http://blog.brainhq.com/2010/04/22/top-12-brain-based-reasons-why-music-as-therapy-works/

But it is the Nordoff-Robbins group in Australia that works specifically with children or adults ( but mainly children) to build their full potential as a human being in spite of their physical or mental challenges. 

It build neural pathways in the brain, it enhances learning, it helps with speech ( because it uses the same area of the brain that is part of speech), it helps us relax and helps our muscles move due to our inate responses to music. We cannot help to move!

And it is enjoyable. Music just makes people happy..

All reasons why it is my Good on the Ground feature for this month.

Jenny Morris has raised in excess of $1 million dollars for this charity.

What a lovely way to give back to something she loves and just knows as fact the huge benefits of music in anyone's life. Even though she can no longer perform (which must be a huge point of sadness for her) she can and does  contribute an enormous amount of her time, both as a volunteer and also as a key fundraiser for them to keep their programs running.

I see what music has brought to my children's lives.

I see it in what our local Conservatorium does each and every day with students, young and old. Music brings huge joy to many people. It is not about how good you are, it is always about how you feel when you play, how others feel when they listen. It is not about being the best, it is not about hours of practice, it is about that feeling when you take time to listen, when you loose yourself in a piece, when you sing along to a tune. 

It is the sheer joy of rhythm and melody, of memories and of fun. 

I hope you enjoy music in your life whenever you can.

The charity that Jenny Morris supports is this one - Nordoff Robbins.

You might what to help them out here!