Main Talks Stage
MOVERS - SHAKERS - CHANGE MAKERS!
On the main stage we'll be showcasing sustainable changemakers set to inspire you. All of these presenters are extremely passionate and highly knowledgeable in their topics, have lived and breathed it and are happy to not only share their knowledge and skills, but their personal stories and hopes for the future as well.
FREE TALKS ALL WEEKEND!
Chiltern Local Elder
WELCOME TO COUNTRY
Gather at the Main Stage to join Bpangerang Elder Uncle Dozer to open the festival with his Welcome to Country speech and digeridoo performance.
Mark La Brooy - Discovered Wildfoods
WILD. SUSTAINABLE. DELICIOUS.
Join renowned chef Mark LaBrooy to learn why Australian Wild Game is the best meat for you & the planet and how you can embrace locally hunted and foraged ingredients in your life.
Discover the untapped potential of Australian wild game as Chef LaBrooy unravels the environmental impact of this alternative meat source. From reducing carbon footprints to promoting biodiversity, he'll highlight how incorporating wild game into our diets can contribute to a healthier planet. As an advocate for ethical and sustainable choices in the kitchen, Chef LaBrooy's talk encourages a thoughtful reconsideration of our meat consumption habits, presenting Australian wild game as a compelling option that balances the desires of food enthusiasts with a genuine commitment to environmental well-being.
Mark is passionate about subsistence hunting, advocating to eat everything you catch and honour the animal by using all parts of it in cooking, wasting as little as possible. For Mark, hunting is an important way of engaging with the environment, and becoming an advocate to protect it.
Jade Miles - Black Barn Farm / Author Futuresteading
Living today like tomorrow matters.
Futuresteading is a book, a podcast and a movement for living today like tomorrow matters.
Join Jade Miles, founder of Futuresteading to hear stories from her life on Black Barn Farm. With an insight into the challenges, personal fulfilment and wider benefits in achieving this lifestyle, and how rituals to connect with environment and community and embracing a simpler, steadier way of being have improved her families life .
Then get inspired by looking at the bigger picture - how can you incorporate these ideas into your own life and that of your community to help create localised fair food systems.
Anthony Smith - Water Wally
FLOWING TOWARDS SUSTAINABILITY
The Ripple Effect of Reusing Wastewater
After finishing a degree in Environmental Engineering, Anthony Smith travelled around Australia working and living on remote self-sufficient properties where he saw first-hand how living off-grid was an exercise in survival, and how water conservation was essential to this. Things like waterless toilets and reusing greywater played vital roles.
His passion for the environment and water conservation led him to start a landscaping business and specialising in water-wise gardening. Not surprisingly, smarter gardening practices led him back full circle to saving and recycling water by incorporating greywater irrigation and compost creating waterless toilets.
If you want to learn more about Composting Toilets, Greywater Management, Septic Tanks and more, this is the man to talk to. Sit back relax and take in his world of knowledge about wastewater management in an off-grid setting with a look at the range of various off-grid wastewater management systems from Septic systems to Vermiculture Systems and Reed Beds to Aerated Treatment systems – understanding your site and soil conditions and how to decide which system is right for you.
David Holmgren- Holmgren Design
The Downshifter's guide to a resilient future.
Want to hear how we can retrofit our reality to survive and thrive tough times while avoiding the multiple grids that threaten to enclose our lives?
Is it really necessary to move from the city to a rural block to be off-grid? Could buying an existing property (including the dependencies and mistakes of previous owners) be a better option? A move to a country town might be an easier stepping-stone to off-grid living. Is it possible to be off-grid in the suburbs in a well-chosen property or even in our existing one?
Maybe we should sell up, get out of debt and be off-grid - Mobile Minimalists? And if you’re young, fit and quick to learn and contribute but don’t own anything, maybe there are opportunities to go off-grid by partnering with older owners facing challenging transitions?
David Holmgren, permaculture co-originator and author of RetroSuburbia; the downshifters guide to a resilient future, and long time Central Victorian, has a lifetime of experience looks forward to discussing all these issues, options and more with our enthusiastic crowd.
Amelie Vanderstock - Amelie Ecology
DOING OUR BEST FOR BEES
Discover diversity & ecology of native bees.
There are over 2000 species of native bees in Australia? Who might live in your patch? And how can we make that space the best it can BEE?
Join Dr Amelie Vanderstock (Amelie Ecology) in discovering the diversity and ecology of native bees as well as what you can do to improve your own space (big or small!) for pollinators. Amelie combines her ecological PHD research with a passionate flair for interactive insect conservation!
This will be a great talk for all ages, with plenty of opportunity for Q & A.
MAKING MONEY ON YOUR FARM PATCH
Becoming economically self-sufficient
Have you ever dreamed of breaking free from the conventional and embracing a self-sufficient lifestyle on your own land? The allure of off-grid living is undeniable, but the journey comes with its challenges, particularly the ongoing costs associated with land ownership.
Join Gamila in an eye-opening talk that will help you develop a realistic dream, avoid hurdles and setbacks and thrive long-term.
Explore the untapped potential of your patch of land, and think about practical ways to make it not only a haven for self-sufficiency but also a source of income. Delve into a thought-provoking discussion where Gamila addresses key questions, prompting you to assess your skills, resources, and ambitions. This insightful talk aims to empower you with the knowledge needed to make informed decisions about your land's future.
Explore topics and Gamila's personal experience with:
- Financial Sustainability
- Assessing Personal Skills and Resources
- Land and Climate Considerations
- Industry Awareness
- Homework for Success
Whether you're on the brink of embarking on a self-sufficient life or considering turning your property into a business, this talk is an invaluable resource.
Natasha Stafford - Beingreen Permaculture
VEGGIE PATCH PLANNING
Cultivating Abundance in your own backyard.
Embark on a journey into the world of sustainable gardening with Natasha, as she delves into key aspects of veggie patch planning, ensuring you have the knowledge and confidence to create a thriving edible oasis right in your backyard.
Garden Positioning: Selecting the optimal location for your vegetable garden, taking into consideration sunlight, wind exposure, and proximity to water sources. Learn how to maximize the natural elements to enhance the productivity of your veggie patch.
Soil Health: Discover the importance of soil quality and how to create the perfect foundation for your plants. Natasha will share insights on soil composition and the role of composting for a nutrient-rich environment.
Plant Choice: Navigate the vast world of vegetable varieties and the process of selecting plants that thrive in your specific climate and soil conditions. From heirloom tomatoes to leafy greens, learn which crops are best suited for your veggie patch.
Weed Management: Practical strategies for effective weed control, including natural methods and permaculture principles that contribute to a low-maintenance and sustainable garden.
Time Management: Balancing a busy schedule while maintaining a productive veggie patch can be challenging. Natasha will share time-saving tips and strategies to ensure that even those with hectic lifestyles can enjoy the rewards of homegrown produce.
Matt Charles Jones - Totally Renewable Yackandandah, President and Co-Founder.
ONE TOWNS JOURNEY TOWARDS A 100% REWEWABLE ENERGY FUTURE
The Victorian town of Yackandandah, with Totally Renewable Yackandandah, has set an ambitious goal to transition their energy supply to become 100% renewable.
This talk will explore the conception of an energy transition, describe successes along the journey and consider the vision for localised and interdependent power supply.
- An amazing 100% volunteer led initiative
- Transitioning Towns
- Clean, local sources of energy
- Virtual Power Plants
- Community Batteries
- Micro-grids / Virtual Power Plant
- Energy Efficiency Programs
The Yackandandah story is a real-world examples of a successful community-led initiative. And this talk will likely inspire you to start thinking about whether your home town could also implement a similar program and help you get started.
Matt Charles Jones is a wealth of knowledge on renewable energy with practical and scalable solutions for communities. He'll share his insights and expertise on a vision for a more empowered and sustainable future with loads of take home tips.
Don't miss the chance to be part of this inspiring conversation and discover how local power can shape the future of our communities from the ground up.
David Arnold - Murrnong Permaculture Farm
ORGANIC ORCHARDS & FRUIT FLY
Growing great organic fruit despite Qld Fruit Fly
Speaking from hard-won experience with QLd Fruit Fly in his diverse organic orchard at Violet Town, David will explain 6 work-around strategies for growing really good fruit with Qld Fruit Fly around, without poisoning or trapping Qld Fruit Fly.
David has been a permaculture farmer and educator for 27 years. He purchases his land in Violet Town in 1996 and has since developed it into a thriving hub of sustainable food production, community and education. His talks are always well-thought out and very inspiring, we invite you to come along and join him for another great hour of insight.
Anna Axisa - Home Grown Health
HOME GROWN HEALTHY LIVING
Anna, her Husband Peter and their children live on a ten-acre hillside farmstead in the Manning Valley NSW. Living off-grid, they've been running a successful worm farm, Worm Biz, for a decade while transforming their hillside property using permaculture design principles. Anna is passionate about working towards self- sufficiency and homestead living. She is the author of "Homegrown Healthy Living", a book that tells their story from her perspective, and includes practical skills, recipes and projects for living a homestead lifestyle, no matter where you call home.
Come along and enjoy her life stories, tips and insights into homesteading projects, niche farm businesses and worms!
Mark Mathieson - ECOPSYCHOLOGIST
THE PYSCHOLOGY OF NATURE (RE)CONNECTION
Why being off-grid is good for us!
Join renowned Psychologist Mark Mathieson in a thought-provoking talk that transcends the conventional discourse around off-grid living. In "The Science of (Re)Connection," Mark will illuminate the intricate relationship between human well-being and our connection with nature, showcasing the profound impact of being off-grid on both individuals and the planet.
While discussions surrounding off-grid living often revolve around economic and environmental advantages, Mark takes a unique approach by delving into the scientific aspects of (re)connection. Discover the profound psychological benefits that come with aligning ourselves with natural principles, transcending the traditional narratives of financial savings and environmental sustainability.
Explore how the pursuit of an off-grid lifestyle isn't just a personal choice but also a collective one that reverberates positively through the planet. Mark will discuss how individual well-being contributes to a more sustainable and interconnected world, fostering a sense of responsibility for the environment.
This talk promises to inspire a deeper understanding of the symbiotic relationship between human beings and the natural world, illustrating that by reconnecting with nature, we not only improve our lives but also become stewards of a healthier, more sustainable planet.
Regen Team - Regenerate Earth
GROWING SOILS, COMMUNITIES & FUTURES
FULL DETAILS COMING SOON.