Monto girl wins ABC’s Hey­wire

Bre­anna rid­ing with no re­straints

Central and North Burnett Times - - NEWS - Jack Lawrie Jack.Lawrie@cnbtimes.com.au

MONTO’S Bre­anna Cook was one of 41 young re­gional Aus­tralians to win the ABC’s Hey­wire blog­ging com­pe­ti­tion.

The com­pe­ti­tion, which was open in Septem­ber to any­one aged between 16 and 22 liv­ing out­side cities, gave young Aus­tralians the op­por­tu­nity to share their sto­ries.

Miss Cook’s en­try, ti­tled “No re­straints mean my horse and I share a unique bond” fo­cused on how she de­vel­oped a pas­sion for trick horse rid­ing.

“Be­cause of our out­back lo­ca­tion, pro­fes­sional tu­ition was non-ex­is­tent and our in­ter­net was not up to speed to watch YouTube videos, so I had to go “old school” and con­tinue my learn­ing from a book,” she said in her en­try.

When asked how she felt about her win, Bre­anna said she was bowled over.

“It was a very good feel­ing to know,” she said.

Bre­anna got in­volved with the com­pe­ti­tion be­cause of the pho­tos she had made on her busi­ness Face­book page BJ Horse­man­ship.

A friend of a friend saw these posts and sug­gested she en­ter.

“I didn’t re­ally get ‘in­spired’ to do it, like when I got told about it, my friend kind of in­spired me by mak­ing me feel my like my story was im­por­tant,” she said.

“But other than that, it’s all from my own ex­pe­ri­ences.”

Like her horse-work, the 17-year-old’s writ­ing was self-taught and off the cuff.

“I looked at a lot of the en­tries from the pre­vi­ous year and when I first started writ­ing I didn’t think it’d ever be a win­ner,” she said.

“For the story, be­cause I knew what I wanted to write I could just write it.”

Even af­ter win­ning, Bre­anna said she was not given any feed­back as to what had made her story ap­peal­ing. The win­ners also pro­vided an au­dio tran­script of their writ­ten en­tries, recorded by the ABC.

“I hadn’t done any­thing like that be­fore, I was pretty ner­vous,” Bre­anna said.

“It took a few tries to get it done.”

On Fe­bru­ary 4, Bre­anna will travel to Can­berra with the rest of the win­ners for the Hey­wire Re­gional Youth Sum­mit, to brain­storm and pitch ideas to im­prove life for re­gional young peo­ple to the Foun­da­tion for Ru­ral and Re­gional Re­newal.

“The main thing I want to fo­cus on is ex­pand­ing the knowl­edge of re­gional com­mu­ni­ties for city peo­ple who don’t have an un­der­stand­ing of what goes on in the coun­try,” she said.

“That’ll be my as­pi­ra­tion for while I’m there.”

Com­mu­nity or­gan­i­sa­tions are el­i­gi­ble to ap­ply for a grant of up to $10,000 from the Foun­da­tion for Ru­ral and Re­gional Re­newal.

PHOTO: CON­TRIB­UTED

HEY­WIRE: Monto's Bre­anna Cook was named a fi­nal­ist in the ABC's ru­ral youth blog­ging com­pe­ti­tion.

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