Main Stage Talks
Proudly brought to you by: Ovens and King Builders
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 knowledge and skills, but share their personal stories and hopes for the future.
FREE TALKS ALL WEEKEND!
Uncle Dozer Atkinson - 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.
Gamila MacRury - Gamila at Beechworth
MAKING MONEY ON YOUR FARM PATCH - Becoming economically self-sufficient
Dreaming of purchasing land, going off-grid, becoming self-sufficient? There's so much to benefit from in this lifestyle, but owning land comes with ongoing costs. Join Gamila to start thinking about ways you could make your patch start to pay it's own way?
She'll discuss key questions to ask yourself, concepts you should research before choosing a path - weighing up your personal skills and resources, considering what suits your land and climate, what is happening in the industry around you, and you might even leave with some homework.
This is a really insightful talk and a must for anyone looking to start a self-sufficient life or turn a property or hobby into a business.
Jade Miles - Black Barn Farm / Author Futuresteading
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.
Dr Rachel Goldlust & David Flanders + Panellists.
REALITIES OF GOING OFF-GRID: How to navigate planning and regulations
This panel brings together planners, surveying engineers and people embarking on an off-grid house project to talk about their experiences and share tips on how to navigate the regulations in Victoria. A must for anyone looking into buying land and figuring out the planning and owner building system.
With plenty of time for question and answer come along if you're building or looking to build in the near future. Be sure to bring your notebook as this panel will offer invaluable insight into the building industry with tips that might save you hours of time and thousands of dollars.
Convened by Dr Rachel Goldlust (planner, environmental historian and founder of Natural Building Australia) and David Flanders (civil engineer and building surveyor).
Daryl Taylor - Kinship: the Kinglake Earthship
COMMUNITY REGENERATION &
COMMONS-ORIENTED POLITICAL ECONOMY
We all know our first trillionaire tech-bro can't and won't produce an app or a silver bullet that threads our planet's diverse climates, ecologies, other species and future generations through the eye of a needle. How might all of us, turn to, rather than on, or away from one another, engage in transformational dialogue and enact regenerative life and complex living systems-centred futures that catalyse, broaden, deepen and co-produce democracy, governance, equity, justice, respect, responsibility, learning, healing, creativity, co-liberation and agency?
Huge shifts are required for community regeneration on a large scale and it's something that Daryl Taylor thinks about and problem solves constantly. Join him for this insightful and inspiring hour that will open up a new way of thinking.
ALL-ELECTRIC HOMES - Getting Off Gas Campaign Australia
An estimated 200,000 new homes are built in Australia each year. Renew’s analysis has consistently showed that energy efficient, all-electric homes are already cost-effective and that converting an existing dual-fuel home to all-electric is almost always an economic benefit for households.
Come along to a talk that will answer your electrification questions and learn how to start getting off gas.
Turning earworms into earthworms and art into action, Formidable Vegetable's Charlie Mgee presents an inspiring and thought-provoking introduction to the ethics and principles of permaculture and how to apply them in your daily life. Come and get a sneak peek into the world of permaculture and start thinking up some ecological solutions to the World's problems in the funkiest way possible.
A fun and uplifting permaculture workshop for all ages.
Karen van Huizen - Permaculture Farmer and Emergency Management Coordinator
FUTURE-PROOFING - Emergency Preparedness
Future Proofing - “Anticipating future events and implementing ways to minimise the impacts.”
Karen (and Paul) are the founders and farmers of Elderglen Elderberry farm in NE Victoria. But it’s not just about growing elderberries...it’s also about future proofing our farm, our family and supporting our community.
As a permaculturalist with lived experience working in emergency management in fires, floods, COVID and landslide Karen is passionate about future-proofing to minimize the challenging effects of any disaster, shock or trauma which may happen unexpectedly. A shock could be something as simple as falling off a ladder and being unable to work for 6 months or more. With this in mind, future proofing was a high priority in establishing her farm to ensure their income and basic needs such as food, water and shelter continue to be met. Which are all important for wellbeing and often taken for granted.
Karen shares simple solutions to inspire others to future proof themselves and their family, no matter where they live.
Anthony (Smitho) Smith - Water Wally
OFF GRID WASTEWATER MANAGEMENT
The story of Water Wally began with founder, Anthony Smith. After finishing a degree in Environmental Engineering, he travelled around Australia, often working and living on remote self-sufficient properties. 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, 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.
Mike Haydon - The Off Grid Shop
HOW TO DESIGN AND SETUP YOUR OWN SOLAR ON A BUDGET
At the Off-Grid Living Festival we understand that not everyone can afford to go off-grid with a $20-50K system, although this makes the process very easy, convenient and reliable, there are other approaches to get there on a tight budget.
Mike Haydon has been designing and installing battery based solar systems for over a decade now and seen it all. In this talk he with share his experiences and give you an insight into how you can save money without compromising on a quality system.
Discussing the points of DIY solar, what's required in terms of equipment and knowledge and help you understand how you can get the best system possible for your budget.
And as a bonus will be talking about living Off-Grid with an EV.
David Arnold - Murrnong Permaculture Farm
PERMACULTURE AS A THINKING TOOL FOR TIMES OF RECESSION
When costs go up and money gets a bit tighter, what can we do? Should we go harder on the paid work treadmill to try to keep up?
In this talk David Arnold will discuss how permaculture thinking and design can guide us to find a more regenerative form of abundance and food security, increase community connections and create the world that we want.
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.
Kirsty Bishop-Fox - Sustainability Educator and Changemaker
OPENING THE SUSTAINABILITY CONVERSATION TO CREATE CHANGE
It can feel challenging when you're trying to make a difference, or even just doing your bit. Then you open the conversation with friends, family or community and sometimes it can feel like you are taking the lead on your own.
You know what we’re talking about - living sustainably for a climate safe future, shifting towards low waste, zero carbon and protecting our planet. Maybe they even talk about it, but they don’t act on it, in the way you wish they would.
Leading with conviction and compassion is essential when we’re talking to unconvinced friends and family about climate destabilization, waste reduction and sustainable living. But where do we start?
Join Kirsty Bishop-Fox, from Sustainability Pathways for some tips to open the conversation. She’s a sustainability educator and changemaker, program manager for the Sustainable Living Festival and co-founder of Zero Waste Victoria. Kirsty is in her element when motivating people to live today, like tomorrow matters.
SUNDAY 3.00 - 4.30PM
John Scarinci - Australian Preppers Survival League
BASIC SURVIVAL & PREPPING FOR EMERGENCIES
Part.1 - Basic Survival: Equips you with the fundamental knowledge required to survive in an unknown area or spot of bother. This unit is ever so important, just like learning first aid, making it essential learning for everyone.
Part.2 - Prepping for Emergencies: A quick run down on all the essential equipment you need to prepare yourself for most kinds of emergencies in Australia.
The Australian Preppers Survival League is a civilian operated, non-profit association that was formed to create mutual assistance groups, to survive a potential crisis. As survivalists, they learn new skills and grow storage capacity for emergency response relief in crises. Providing educational courses, products, resources and knowledge, that help Australians with realistic preparedness strategies, promoting a self reliant approach to protecting themselves, families and communities, in the event of crisis.
They are a reality based 'non alarmist' group that has a realistic and correctly built system to handle 'likely' events v unlikely events by prioritisation and active monitoring of constant changes in local and world events.