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Celebrate Living History Five Year Anniversary Newsletter

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The Celebrate Living History internship program has been running since 2012. This is a special newsletter to showcase the wonderful stories our students from Swinburne University and Griffith University have created. Celebrate Living History's amazing founder Bev has the opportunity of a lifetime to represent Australia at the Generations Remixed Conference in Milwaukee.
The conference is focussed on programs that connect young people with seniors, just like Celebrate Living History which is the only journalism program in Australia, that focuses on connecting university students and high school students with elders to document wonderful stories.
It would be a dream come true for Bev to be able to spread her message and meet with like minded people to help connect the generations of the world! To help fund Bev and for more information, check out our GoFundMe page at

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Celebrate Living History Five Year Anniversary Newsletter

  1. 1. 1 Howdy Folks! It’s hard to believe that Celebrate Living History has being going for five years! I still remember the moment that inspired me to go to the Gold Coast and pitch an idea of an internship program to Stephen Stockwell at Griffith University. Looking back I don’t think many others would believe in something so strongly and take a chance on an idea. I did and I am so glad that since then I’ve had the opportunity to work with many students and seniors. I truly believe we only have one life and that we have to take chances and make things happen. What I love most about CLH is the ability to be the person facilitating the connections between students and seniors. Nothing makes me happier than offering the opportunity for a senior to feel acknowledged and respected for their wisdom. I also love that their stories are showcased online for the community to enjoy a 5Follow our mascot Ava Dognar to Page Celebrate Living History NewsletterSemester 2 2016 Bev with Lisa Messenger Words from Bev the founder of Celebrate Living History Words From Bev Wilkinson Barry Boyd Meet Ryan Book Review Intern Gallery Sponsors Memories of 2012 Contact Details Connecting young people and seniors to celebrate stories for future generations Bev with Griffith University interns Ryan and Jayden
  2. 2. Send Bev to the USA Edition. Find the campaign on Go Fund Me Semester 2: 2016 2 Barry Boyd- A Self-Made man and his birds By Kate Grant Barry Boyd has been a regular customer at the Chinese restaurant I’ve worked at for the last six years. He’s almost the only reason I’ve kept the job for this long. He sticks out as my favorite customer because he is genuinely interested in the little things I’ve been up to during the week, and isn’t shy of a bit of banter. I love hearing about the odd jobs he’s been working on, how his lawn mower is performing, and his vast collection of exotic birds. Over the years the little snippets of conversation we’ve shared while he waited for his Mongolian lamb have painted an interesting, although incomplete, picture of a man who has lived a very full life here in the Tweed Valley. I know it has been tumultuous few years for Barry having lost his beloved wife suffering from dementia. In the brief window I see into his life every Sunday evening, I see an interesting man who has overcome great loss with a strength testament to his character. I went to visit Barry at his home in Duranbah just up the road from Tropical Fruit world in the Tweed Valley. He lives in his own comfortable quarters in a house shared with his son and his family. Barry has lived in this region all his life he tells me, “I was born and bred here. Born amongst all the lucky threes. I was born 31st of the 3rd, ’33. That makes me 83. So I consider myself lucky; number three is lucky for me.” I wouldn’t hesitate to agree with him, but I must clarify that I believe Barry has made his own luck. Growing up on a dairy farm in Condong, Barry was the fourteenth child out of his sixteen brothers and sisters. Being raised on a big self-supporting farm meant he learnt the value of hard work from a very young age. Every morning at daylight he would get up with his brothers and sisters to milk 150 cows by hand before school. Sounds like a lot of hard work to me but Barry assures me, “Kids today wouldn’t really know, wouldn’t have a clue of the good times I had on that farm.” He’s right, I don’t know and something in me is envious of his upbringing because it has certainly awarded him a strong work ethic.
  3. 3. Celebrate Living History Send Bev to the USA: 3 “The day I turned fifteen I never went back to school. I’ve lost count of all the jobs I’ve had but I’ve done really well. The wife was very clever, we worked hard and we put our money aside. I’ve got no worries at all now, can sit back and retire with plenty of money to have a good time.” When I asked what kind of advice he would give to the younger generation, Barry stressed the importance of being careful with your money. “You’ve got to put money aside if you want something. If you want something don’t get it unless you can afford it. If I couldn’t afford what I wanted we wouldn’t get it. That was our motto.” Barry met his wife when he was twenty two at a dance in Parramatta. In their fifty seven and a half years together they worked hard for the things they wanted in life and made do with what they had. Barry shows me a picture of his late wife which he keeps on the wall in his living room. From the way he speaks of her I can tell the gravity of love and respect he still holds for her. “We had a wonderful life and she was a clever lady. Even that dress she’s got on and her wedding dress, she made all that. She worked in a bank, worked in Victor motors. She was a wiz on figures. She’d make the kid’s clothes, my clothes. She was a clever lady. So it’s the hardest part of my life right now, I’m lost without her. It’s hard.” Barry nursed his wife for nine years as her dementia progressed. In this time I can remember Barry coming into the restaurant giving me updates on her health and how he was coping. I could tell it was wearing on him strongly but he refused to put her into an aged care home despite himself being hospitalised three times as a result of the stress. “I nursed her right up until a week before she passed away. She didn’t know much, didn’t know what was going on but she knew what a nursing home was and she’d break down and cry and beg me not to leave her there. I vowed and declared that I would never put her in a home, I refused point blank.” The love and dedication Barry had for his wife is an indication of the indomitable strength in his character. Here is a man who never gives up and stands by his morals. Learning of just how much his wife’s illness and passing ‘knocked him around’ over the past nine years has made me appreciate even more his happy-go- lucky demeanor and warm smile which I’ve known him for. Even now in what he calls a lonely period in his life, he is keeping busy on his family’s property tending to his birds and maintaining the impressive aviary he built with his son. Barry has always had an interest in birds ever since he was eight years old and his father brought him back some budgerigars from Sydney. At this time in his life I believe these birds and his family give him the strength he needs to carry on living a fulfilling life. From what I know of Barry, he is happy when he’s got some work to do and with so many birds and fruit trees to look after I can see him being quite content here. “It’s good company here. I got my birds and my five acres to play with. It’s like being back on the farm where I was born.”
  4. 4. Send Bev to the USA Edition. Find the campaign on Go Fund Me Semester 2: 2016 4 "Elizabeth is missing. Did I tell you?" How do you solve a mystery when you can't remember the clues? How do you convince people that your best friend is missing when no one takes you seriously? Elizabeth Is Missing follows the plight of Maud, who is trying to track down her missing best friend Elizabeth all while slipping further into the clutches of Alzheimer's disease. Maud tries to piece together small snippets of her ailing memories in an attempt to not only track down her missing friend, but to also convince those around her that she knows what she's talking about. Emma Healey captures the daily frustrations and struggles people with Alzheimer's and their families face on a daily basis. Having known someone with Alzheimer's, Healeys depictions of the disease are accurate and believable. Small pops of humour break up the frustration of Mauds disjointed memories and the story flips back and forth from the present day to Maud’s childhood where she tries to track down her missing sister. This breaks up the story nicely and keeps the book flowing along at a good pace. Elizabeth is missing was a captivating read and I desperately wanted to know what was going to happen next the entire time. It also gives those who aren't familiar with the debilitating effects of Alzheimer's an insight into what it must be like to both have the disease and the way other people respond to it. Over all Elizabeth is Missing was an enjoyable read which opens up discussion on a disease we, as an ageing society should be talking about more often. Book Review Elizabeth is Missing – Emma Healey By Melissa Haber What attracts you about being an intern for Celebrate Living History? The opportunity to further my PR and writing skills while supporting an organisation that truly cares for all in our communities. I’ve always loved history and what better way to learn than to meet those that truly live it. Who is an older person that you admire and why? My Nana Sadler. She’s been through some hard times in recent years and she is still pulling through with a smile on her face. Meet Ryan our Griffith University intern
  5. 5. Celebrate Living History Send Bev to the USA: 5 Mike Continued from page 1 2 different insight into history. Do you remember last semester I applied for the Winston Churchill fellowship? Well I stumbled across the Generations Remixed Conference, which celebrates people, organisations and projects that focus on connecting elders with young people. Which is exactly what I am excited about. I applied to be a speaker and would love the opportunity to chat to such a great audience who connect with all generations. Also to attend the conference and bring all the knowledge I’ve gained back to Australia. It would be wonderful to get the community involved and in a sense follow me on this journey. So I have set up a Go Fund Me Crowd Funding campaign at I was really hesitant to get this campaign up and going. For those that know me well, I’ve applied for so many grants and have tried crowd funding before. Every time I’ve come close but I’m never the one. But I thought maybe third time is a charm with crowd funding? We hear all these stories about people that succeed but never about those who continue to struggle and despite the odds keep going. So I’m doing this for those that keep getting knocked back. If I keep trying then you can too. Persist and one day you will get there. Speaking of idols this semester I met Lisa Messenger who is the founder of The Collective Magazine. I attended the Kick. Start. Smart event in Brisbane and stalked her silly to grab a photo with her! I loved that despite the odds she decided to launch the Collective Magazine, which is very inspiring to anyone who wants to start a business or movement from scratch. Till Next Time! Keep dreaming big! Founder of Celebrate Living History Bev Wilkinson Every year I head up to the Gold Coast and meet my student interns. I’ve had the greatest pleasure of helping them create wonderful stories to be shared within the community. But most of all I value the connections they make with an elder person that they otherwise would not have. Top- Madison 2016 Below – Trine and Helana 2013 Mike 2015 Meeting interns Gallery
  6. 6. Send Bev to the USA Edition. Find the campaign on Go Fund Me Semester 2: 2016 6 34 Thanks to our sponsors and supporters!
  7. 7. Lorem Ipsum Dolor [Street Address] [City], [State][Postal Code] [Web Address] Celebrate Living History PO BOX 11253 Frankston 3199 Visit Send Bev to the US ON GO FUND ME. Contact: Flash Back the Year 2012 (Where it all started!) Bartiste Frankston