CRE­AT­ING CHANGE

Central and North Burnett Times - - FRONT PAGE - JU­LIAN LEHNERT ju­lian.lehnert@cnbtimes.com.au

A se­ries of work­shops for the North Bur­nett’s cur­rent and fu­ture com­mu­nity lead­ers went into its se­cond stage this morn­ing in Mun­dub­bera, promis­ing to teach lo­cals the means to make a dif­fer­ence in their so­cial cir­cles.

The North Bur­nett Lead­er­ship se­ries – a joint ini­tia­tive by lo­cal and Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment as well as re­gional com­mu­nity and de­vel­op­ment or­gan­i­sa­tions – at­tracted 16 of the re­gion’s res­i­dents to the Bil­l­abong Mo­tor Inn in Mun­dub­bera for a work­shop on cre­at­ing so­cial change.

The six-hour ses­sion was pre­sented by Lisa Ryan, the di­rec­tor of Adap­tive Lead­er­ship Aus­tralia, who trav­elled to the Bur­nett from Syd­ney.

“[The work­shop] is a com­bi­na­tion of so­cial im­pact – the dif­fer­ence that we will make for our com­mu­ni­ties – and what it takes to get there,” Ms Ryan ex­plained.

“My fo­cus is on build­ing col­lab­o­ra­tion and the mind­set of lead­er­ship.”

The Mun­dub­bera work­shop was the se­cond in a se­ries of four aimed at ex­plor­ing dif­fer­ent as­pects of lead­er­ship.

Or­gan­is­ers made the de­ci­sion to come to the re­gion af­ter a sim­i­lar pro­gram gar­nered great suc­cess in the South Bur­nett in 2018.

Ms Ryan took part in the 2018 work­shops and was asked to re­turn, to which she gladly agreed.

The for­mer so­cial worker, con­sul­tant and lead­er­ship spe­cial­ist said that know­ing the needs of one’s com­mu­nity was cru­cial to bring­ing about real change.

“One of the things that’s re­ally im­por­tant is to ask your­self: ‘What do I mean by so­cial change and im­pact?’” she said.

“The clearer you are about that, the more it helps you think about what you need to do to get there.”

Ms Ryan ex­plained that be­ing a change-maker came down to ne­go­ti­at­ing both com­mon ground and com­mu­ni­tyspe­cific as­pects; lead­ers must be aware of a va­ri­ety of is­sues at any given time.

“I think there are some com­mon­al­i­ties in terms of be­ing able to work with dif­fer­ent threads – be­ing able to think about all of the po­ten­tial de­vel­op­ments,” she said.

“It’s about not get­ting de­railed by con­flict, be­cause con­flict is go­ing to hap­pen ev­ery time you bring pas­sion­ate peo­ple to­gether.

“How­ever, it’s also re­ally spe­cific re­gard­ing who is in our com­mu­nity and re­gard­ing the things that mat­ter most to our com­mu­nity.”

The third work­shop in the North Bur­nett Lead­er­ship se­ries will take place on March 23 in Biggen­den and will be led by ABC jour­nal­ist Pete Lewis.

The fourth and fi­nal work­shop will take the form of a study tour to Toowoomba, where com­mu­nity lead­ers can learn more about so­cial en­ter­prises.

Sarah Shaw (left) and Sarah Aberdein (right) from Bur­nett de­vel­op­ment or­gan­i­sa­tion BIEDO to­gether with Lisa Ryan (cen­tre) at the Mun­dub­bera work­shop. Pic­ture: Ju­lian Lehnert

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