From the CEO

QantasLink Sprit - - Contents - John Giss­ing CEO, Qan­tasLink

IF YOU think of Aus­tralia as a liv­ing or­gan­ism, our re­gional towns are the ar­ter­ies pro­vid­ing life to the heart of our ma­jor ci­ties.

That’s es­pe­cially ob­vi­ous as we ap­proach Christ­mas and ta­bles pile up with re­gional pro­duce. But the likes of our Cof­fin Bay oys­ters, Mil­dura or­anges, cen­tral Queens­land beef and Swan Val­ley wine aren’t just pro­vid­ing for the ta­bles of Aus­tralian fam­i­lies; they’re also mak­ing a name for them­selves around the globe.

As a re­sult, our re­gional pro­duce is help­ing to power the na­tion’s econ­omy, with farm­ing ex­ports fore­cast to reach

$44 bil­lion this fi­nan­cial year.

There is, how­ever, an­other side to the story. Our volatile cli­mate means that farm­ing in Aus­tralia can be dif­fi­cult. With floods and bush­fires to con­tend with, many farm­ers have been do­ing it tough. And when we’re given the chance to lend a hand, most of us will jump in feet first.

Qan­tas and Qan­tasLink em­ploy­ees have re­cently vol­un­teered their time and skills to help the farm­ers of Charleville in South West Queens­land. While a wet win­ter has helped lift spir­its, the state is still more than 80 per cent drought de­clared.

Charleville holds a par­tic­u­larly spe­cial place in our hearts at Qan­tas: it was where our first mail flight took off on its way to Clon­curry in 1922. So when we were asked to help fly our vol­un­teers to the farms in need, we were very happy to as­sist.

To­gether with the Out­back Links pro­gram, vol­un­teer pi­lots, engi­neers and cabin crew helped paint sheds, mend home­steads, fix machin­ery and pro­vide as much help to the farm­ers as they could. It’s a fan­tas­tic cause and we’re re­ally proud to be in­volved.

If you’re read­ing in­flight, take a peek out the win­dow. Whether you see rocky moun­tain tops, stun­ning reefs, golden shore­lines, sprawl­ing deserts or cityscapes, it’s ob­vi­ous that Aus­tralia has some­thing to of­fer ev­ery kind of trav­eller. And there is much to ex­plore in this edi­tion of Spirit.

On be­half of ev­ery­one at Qan­tasLink, I wish you and your loved ones a safe and happy fes­tive sea­son.

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