To be an outback resident of Western Queensland is synonymous with tenacity, endurance, and a generosity of spirit. Like the seasons, outback residents have weathered and endured many changes – personal setbacks, natural disasters, changes in market trends and the economy. They do not take anything for granted. They know how to celebrate the good times and to appreciate the small things in life. They have learnt to draw upon each other for support and in doing so, instinctively knowing that their strength is in their unity – the sum of the whole truly is greater than its parts.
In some respects the character of these outback communities is like its terrain. Situated above a tremendous artesian basin, communities have to dig deep for water in order to sustain them. In the same way, outback residents and communities have to dig deep during the tough times. They do this by drawing upon their own instincts and the wisdom and experience of others, many of whom have endured the demands of outback life time and time again and have learned to thrive. In doing so, they make many heartfelt connections that will nurture and sustain them.
These digital stories were an opportunity for these communities that are affected by drought to share their stories. By assuming that a community has healing knowledge, by providing them with a relevant audience, and by offering them the opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to others; we were able to facilitate in sharing their own solutions with mutual encouragement, against a common social issue. Exchanging these stories with others cultivates a sense of self-determination, a feeling of solidarity and belonging, and a sense of hope and enthusiasm. Sharing their stories and giving them a voice allows others to learn and grow from what they have experienced and overcome.
We, at Anglicare, hope that you enjoy watching these stories; we hope you hear the voices of each individual, their collective community knowledge and their lived expertise.