Spring Fest is Returning to Flinders University!

Spring Fest is Returning to Flinders University!

Flinders University is calling all explorers to experience their spring garden of fun, education and entertainment!

Get ready to meet the animals, roll around in the ball pit and get those thumbs green, because once again Flinders University have partnered with Nature Play SA to cultivate a packed program of free activities and experiences for the whole family to enjoy this October!

Come and be amazed by the weird, wacky and exciting wonders of science live on stage, construct your own cubby house overlooking the picturesque lake, or brew your own nature potion… SpringFest is a great day for all kids big and small!

This is the perfect day out for the family to enjoy the wonderful Flinders University grounds and a range of free activities!

This day will be jam-packed with activities including:

Thinking Caps Science Show
Interactive Animal Shows
Market stalls
Two stages featuring live music
Arts and crafts
Activities are free and so is parking.

Keep reading for more information on the Spring Fest program below!

Artists on the Main Stage

Amelia Ryan

Amelia Ryan is a multi-award-winning Cabaret Artist, Writer, Presenter, Mentor and Mum. A Musical Theatre Actress by trade (Victorian College of the Arts), she swapped ‘Song and Dance’ for ‘Comedy and Cabaret’, when she realised her ability to do a time-step (or ANY step) paled in comparison to her knack for cracking a quip.

Adam Page

Adam Page is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, music educator and record producer based in Adelaide, South Australia. Known widely for his critically acclaimed solo multi-instrumental looping performances, Page has carved his path internationally as a composer. He has written major works for the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra (which he has also conducted), the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Wellington, Zephyr Quartet and has collaborated with John Psathas, NZ composer of the 2004 Athens Olympics ceremony music.

Page’s other musical collaborations stretch far and wide, working with artists and groups such as The Australian String Quartet, Slava Grigoryan, Noel Gallagher, Katie Noonan, Riki Gooch, Jamie MacBen Todd, The Wizard Tone Art Orchestra, The Shaolin Afronauts, 1.1 Immermann, Ross McHenry, Thomas Oliver, The Adelaide Sax Pack, Darren Percival, Mal Webb, Zephyr Quartet, Lisa Tomlins and Dr. Chandrakant Sardeshmukh. He has also recorded with artists such as Electric Wire Hustle, Julien Dyne, Julia Deans, Mark de Clive-Lowe, Christoph El’ Truento, Oisima, Spook City, Ben Todd, The Shaolin Afronauts, Nico Suave and Dave Whitehead (recording various sounds for The Hobbit films).

Liz Calahan

Founder and Director of Bey Dance, Liz Calahan is about empowering and encouraging people to engage with each other through dance.

Working with Make A Wish foundation Liz has taught dance to children that want to be on stage or find the confidence to dance ‘like everyone is Watching’ which was her aptly named show at this years ‘Dream Big Festival.’

Bortier Okoe

Bortier sings messages of peace, anti-poverty, connections, resilience, and tolerance – communicating across boundaries and countries. His unifying lyrics convey strong messages for humanity while his dynamic live performances are exhilarating, delivered with power, grace and a sense of humour. Bortier’s music is unique and irresistible – making a significant contribution and progression to World Music.

Bortier Okoe has performed around the world, and is revered as one of the most talented multi-instrumentalists in the African music genre. Well-known for his extraordinary musical gifts and exciting innovations.

Nathan May

Multi-talented emerging singer-songwriter Nathan May descends from the Arabana, Yawuru and Marridjabin clans. Nathan writes in memory of his friends and family and as a reminder that there’s always hope. He sings with a wide-open smile from deep within his soul and has an innate ability to craft songs and express feelings of wide appeal to a broad audience that are way beyond his 24 young years. Nathan has recently been nominated and a finalist for the South Australian Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander Artist of the Year Award.

Activities: Hub | SpringFest

The Collections Project: Jake Holmes
Screen Printing Workshop
Activity: Have a go at making your own hand screen printed poster with South Australian artist Jake Holmes. Pick out designs and experiment with text, shapes, colour, layers and textures to make a poster of your own.

Artist Bio: Jake Holmes is an Adelaide based visual artist working across a variety of mediums including; screen printing, mural painting, illustration, audio and collage. Jake is currently in residency at Flinders University and will respond to the University’s extensive collection of political posters, one of most diverse poster collections in the country.

Jake Holmes is well known as the printmaker behind the rainbow ‘C’mon Aussie C’mon’ posters. In collaboration with street artists Peter Drew, they transformed the famous cricket anthem into an iconic image in support of Australian marriage equality. This has also transformed into a poster to support the ‘Change the date‘ movement, in collaboration with artist Elizabeth Close. He is also the cofounder of PRINT CULT and Tooth and Nail studio and gallery, a city-based communal studio which opened in 2011 and ran for seven years. “The opportunity to spend time with and research important political works, particularly from recent South Australian history, through my own practice is incredibly exciting.”

Basket weaving

Activity: Learn a new relaxing and engaging handicraft. Basket weaving is a creative, social and meditative process, as any maker will tell you, being mindful throughout the creative process is just as important as the product itself. Discover the joy of this ancient craft, while creating something with your own hands.

Artist Bio: Lakun Mara is an Aboriginal owned business run by Sonya Rankine, a Ngarrindjeri, Narungga, Ngadjuri woman of South Australia. Lakun Mara key focus is cultural revival and maintenance of traditional Ngarrindjeri weaving techniques and cultural practice.

Activities: Anchor Court Stage |SpringFest

The Bone Detectives

Activity: Ever wondered how palaeontologists can identify an animal just from its bones? The Bone Detectives is a casual, fun and interactive lecture that uses modern Australian animals to give a little perspective on how a palaeontologist would look at prehistoric creatures. Professor Flint will even sing a song or two.

Artist Bio: Heaps Goods Productions Creative Director, Michael Mills has written, directed, produced and appeared in many shows as a variety of characters, as well as himself, during the Australian Festival for Young People, the Adelaide Fringe Festival, at Adelaide, Melbourne and Taronga Zoos, the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, the S.A. Museum, the S.A. Maritime Museum, and at hundreds of schools and kindergartens. He has performed his shows to sell-out crowds at the Royal Sydney Botanic Garden. He has also acted as an Artist in Residence in several schools, creating musical productions with the students. Michael wrote songs and music for, and was a regular presenter, on Channel 7’s national children’s television show, “The Book Place” throughout it’s final series. He has also appeared on a number of other local and national television shows in his capacity as a children’s writer and performer.

Flinders University STEM Outreach

Activity: Do you want to learn how to make liquid nitrogen ice cream or explore the Lizard Ecology room in search of 5 ‘lizards’ considering adaptions for survival, lifestyles and habitats. How many lizards can you find before time runs out?

Artist Bio: The Flinders STEM Outreach Program aspires to inspire high school students, teachers and the wider community to understand and enjoy the STEM disciplines of science, computing, engineering, mathematics and the environment. From a hands-on curriculum linked workshop program for students and teachers, to our industry events and participation at expos, conferences, Open Days and a number science related events like Science Alive! You will see the STEM Outreach team making a difference.

Even Extinct Animals have Dental Records

Activity: What do your teeth say about you? Too much sugar, maybe? The same is true of fossils. We can learn what extinct animals ate, if they’d had disease, and how old they were. Using plaster casts, kids will get to a paint a replica Thylacoleo tooth and learn how these fossils can help researchers, museums, and even the general public.

Artist Bio: Palaeontology at Flinders; If you have a passion for uncovering long-buried secrets that deepen our understanding of how life on Earth evolved, Flinders University can turn that passion into a rewarding palaeontology career.

Activities: Nature Play SA

Lakeside Cubbies

Activity: Explore the lawns and wild spaces over-looking the picturesque lake as you embark on your cubby building adventure! Nature Play SA will be on hand with ropes, hessian and tips to get you started.

Location: Lakeside


Activity: Learn how technology can help you find your way through nature. This activity taps into problem-solving, team-building and creative-thinking skills while promoting physical activity outdoors. Geocaching combines a unique blend of ‘screen time’ and ‘green time’ with children exploring the Flinders University grounds on a high-tech treasure hunt using the best navigation technology available.

Location: Lakeside

Wildlife Displays & Shows

Activity: Discover and learn about our native wildlife with interactive displays and shows from the team at Animal Anonymous. Each display will have very friendly Australian animals such as frogs, pythons, dragons, goannas, skinks, geckos, crocodiles, frogmouths, owls, parrots, squirrel gliders, long-nosed potoroos, rufous bettongs, tiger quolls, southern brown bandicoots, western pygmy possums, fat-tailed dunnarts and quokkas. Displays available all day.

Location: Humanities Courtyard

Nature Potions and Tinkering

Activity: Natural loose parts, pots, pans and crockery set the stage for a creative, open-ended play. Watch your children engage their senses as they experiment with seasonal plants, water, natural play doughs, clay and other earthy mediums in this tactile play experience with Nature Play SA

Location: Humanities Courtyard

Flinders University Spring Fest 2019

19 October 2019

10am – 3pm


What To Do With The Kids These October School Holidays!

What To Do With The Kids These October School Holidays!

October school holidays are just around the corner, the sun is shining and we have some great ideas for entertaining and also educating the kids!

Here is just a taster of our comprehensive list that we update every school holidays! We are here to help!

For 50+ more ideas look no further than our KIDDO: Top Things To Do With The Kids These School Holidays Ultimate List

In the meantime, check out some of our favourite options below: 


What’s a tube slide? Think of it as a water-less water slide or a snow-free ski run where you slide down synthetic slopes in big rubber rings that turn, accelerate, go up in bends and stop on their own. The Tube Slides are now available as part of the standard day entry. Woodhouse also hosts birthday parties, for more party venue ideas check out our KIDDO Adelaide Party Venue guide!

37 Spring Gully Road, Piccadilly
Woodhouse Activity Centre 

Andy’s Amazing Adventures


Sunday, September 29, 2019 at 11 AM – 12:30 PM BAFTA-nominated presenter Andy Day is on his way down under. For the first time ever in Australia, the star of ABC KIDS and CBeebies Andy’s Wild Adventures, Andy’s Dinosaur Adventures and Andy’s Prehistoric Adventures will delight his Australian fans live on stage. Andy Day is fascinated by all creatures – big and small, existing or extinct. And now, visiting theatres across Australia during the September and October school holidays, he is on a mission to thrill and entertain in a brand-new live adventure. He’ll have some help too – from familiar faces, new friends and hopefully you!

Thebarton Theatre, Adelaide


These summer holidays sees the opening of the new Variety Children’s Zoo! There is also the incredible Natureʼs Playground – a play space designed to create unstructured play for children of all abilities and forms a unique area within the zoo where families can play and discover the gifts of nature. Also, check out Zoocation – the zooʼs holiday vacation care program.

Frome Rd, Adelaide SA 5000


Marvel at one of Adelaide’s most conspicuous animals, the Grey-headed Flying-fox. Local bat experts will delight your kids (ages 5-12) with hands-on creative activities that will highlight the miraculous story of this marvellous mammal. Activities will include visiting the bats at their roost, kite-making, drawing / painting, peering through microscopes in the Bat Cave and even a demonstration with live animals by the Adelaide Zoo! Two sessions daily: 9:30 am to 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm on 9 & 10. Book your place at eventbrite.com.au/e/bat-camp-tickets.

The Santos Conservation Centre

kids art and crafts, painting in hyde park,


Our favourites, Little Picassos are holding a number of holiday classes in their beautiful studios (Glenelg, Magill, Hyde Park & Woodcroft). They have holiday programmes as well as art class which are rich in variety and cater for different ages, skill levels and art curriculum allowing for a hands on, experimental and educational way to introduce your littlies to art, or fine tune their current skill level and techniques. Classes vary in times, materials, themes, art skills and techniques. Art sessions are for children aged 2 -16 years. Prices range from COST: $20– $55 per session.For more info head to their website and select the specific studio.

Glenelg, Magill, Hyde Park & Woodcroft


Let your children get creative with some fun kids craft activities at KID & HUB and Patch Kitchen and Garden while you enjoy a coffee with friends! The concept behind MINI MAD CRAFT classes is that your little ones will make something that they can then take home to play with. In these school holiday craft workshops children will be making 2 large projects which might include a fancy dress costume, mask or an amazing imaginary machine! These workshops are fun, imaginative and encourage creative thinking.

Patch Kitchen, Sterling and Kid and Hib, Maylands
For further information on  classes visit minimadthings.com/collections/craft-activity-classes


Adelaide Central Markets hosts their Big Market Adventures for Little Foodies every school holidays. Get the kids in the kitchen! Whether youʼve got a mini Jamie Oliver on your hands, or just as something fun to do with new skills to build on, cooking classes are so much fun!

4-60 Gouger St, Adelaide SA 5000
Adelaide Central Market


The Big Wedgie is the world’s TALLEST and most EXTREME inflatable waterslide. With 4 awesome inflatable waterslides, The Big Wedgie has something for perfect for all ages and thrill-levels… The Big Wedgie also hosts birthday parties, for more party venue ideas check out our KIDDO Adelaide Party Venue guide! The Big Wedgie opens 28th September 2019 – 13th October. social followers 10% off online tickets! Please use online code: KIDDOMAG.

Military Road, West Beach (Next to Mega Adventure)


Monarto Zoo is a must! 1500 hectare open range zoo – the largest one in the world – and is home to over 500 animals including lions, giraffes, meerkat, chimpanzees and so much more! Itʼs a beautiful experience to see these animals roam around and you truly do feel like you have escaped reality and been transported to a safari, plus the zoo holds so many activities to check out including ‘meet the keeperʼ. Monarto Zoo is open from 9o30-5pm every day of the year (including Christmas Day and public holidays).

Old Princes Hwy, Monarto South SA 5254


Get up close and personal with roos, koalas, wallabies, betongs and Tasmanian devils – most of which are in their natural habitat – and itʼs just 20 minutes away from the city centre! Itʼs also a great place to have a picnic. For opening hours, information on planning your day, fees and to buy tickets, head straight to the website. Cleland also hosts birthday parties, for more party venue ideas check out our KIDDO Adelaide Party Venue guide!

365 Mount Lofty Summit Road, Cleland, SA, 5152

For 50+ more ideas head to KIDDO: Top Things To Do With The Kids These School Holidays Ultimate List

School Holidays City Bat Camp is Here!

School Holidays City Bat Camp is Here!

Just Wing it and Register for Bat Camp These School Holidays!

On the 9th and 10th of October all kiddos are invited to come and marvel at one of Adelaide’s most conspicuous animals, the Grey-headed Flying-fox! Local bat experts will delight your kids (ages 5-12) with hands-on creative activities that will highlight the miraculous story of this marvellous mammal.

Activities will include visiting the bats at their roost, kite-making, drawing / painting, peering through microscopes in the Bat Cave and even a demonstration with live animals by the Adelaide Zoo!

Morning and afternoon sessions available daily: 9:30 am to 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm

This Bat Camp extravaganza will take place at the Santos Conservation Centre, adjacent to the Adelaide Zoo entrance in Botanic Park. 

Want to learn more about our fury friends? Keep reading more below! 

Is it a gravity-defying dog? Is it a furry pheasant? No, it’s a flying fox! The Grey-headed Flying Fox (Pteropus poliocephalus) has been a guest in Adelaide for nearly 10 years now. But why is it special, where does it come from and why has it chosen to call Adelaide home?

We are lucky to have the Grey-headed Flying Foxes as our guests here in Adelaide, as they are not as common as they once were and normally only live along the east coast of Australia. They are in fact Australia’s largest bat, can weigh up to one kilogram and take flight on wings up to one metre across.

Even though they are not native to the area, they are very important for ecological systems as they pollinate and spread the seed of over 100 native plants, helping our natural areas regenerate effectively into the future. They have joined eight native microbats that already live in and around the city.

Backyard bandits

Many Adelaide residents may have also seen furry flying foxes feasting on fleshy fruit (what a tongue- twister!) from trees in their own backyards. If you’re lucky enough to have had one of these up-close encounters (they’re normally quite shy), you can rest assured that these flying foxes won’t eat all the apples and oranges of your hard-earned labour. They’ll only eat foreign fruits when native food sources (like pollen, nectar and fruit of native plants) are in scarce supply. So why not plant more native flowering plants?

Caring for our charismatic cousins

Adelaide saw its first flying foxes arrive in 2010 in their search for other places to live. Roost disturbance (from logging and agriculture), climate change, urban sprawl and drought in eastern states have been factors leading to their displacement.

Adelaide offers the flying foxes a comfortable climate, access to food and water, and many tall trees in which they can roost. State Government Agencies, the City of Adelaide, private institutions and NGOs are working together to make sure our gregarious guest is comfortable for as long as it wants to call Adelaide home.

How can we find out more about them?

Since their arrival, the Grey-headed Flying Foxes have been regular and welcome guests at some of Adelaide’s most important annual events, including WOMADelaide, Arts Festival and Fringe Festival activities in the east end of the city.

But you don’t need to wait for festival season to have a look – take your children and a pair of binoculars to get a great up-close view of them in the western side of Botanic Park, south-west of Plane Tree Drive. Just be sure to avoid standing directly under them – you might be in for an unpleasant ‘gift’ from above!

Flying fox fun!

Keep your eyes and ears tuned, as later this year the City of Adelaide is running fun and educational activities with partners including the Adelaide Zoo and South Australian Museum in which you and your family will be able to get ‘hands-on’ in learning more about this incredible winged mammal and their fascinating fable of survival!

Bat Camp – 9 & 10 October 2019, 9:30 am to 12 pm or 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm  

For more information visit: cityofadelaide.com/GHFlyingFox


September is Biodiversity Month and over the coming months we'll be shining the spotlight on one of our most helpful pollinators and seed dispersers, the Grey-headed Flying-fox 🦇 A highly intelligent, social and caring mammal, the Grey-headed Flying-fox is a keystone species, meaning many plants rely on them to spread pollen and seeds. Throughout October and November you can visit the self-guided Bat Trail along the River Torrens, or take part in a Bat Ramble hosted by local bat researchers and experts. For the kids, we'll be hosting Bat Camp! – a fun-filled educational event, perfect for curious little nature-lovers 🌳Visit our website for all the details http://ow.ly/An0530pv5nq

Posted by City of Adelaide on Sunday, 8 September 2019

A Chat with Phil Cummings: Journeying from Page to Stage with ’Space Race’

A Chat with Phil Cummings: Journeying from Page to Stage with ’Space Race’

Author Phil Cumming’s ‘Touch the Moon’ journey from the page to the stage ’Space Race’…

Travel back in time to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing as the ASO brings to life award-winning author Phil Cummings’ new book with music composed by Glyn Lehmann.

When the Soviet Union’s Sputnik 1 became the first satellite to orbit the Earth – the race was on! Caught by surprise the US was determined to stay in the race. As the world watched on in fascination, there were also many unforgettable personal moments. Experience the drama and excitement of this incredible time and, amidst it all, relive Phil’s own heart-warming childhood recollection of 21 July 1969.

We chat to Phil about his inspirations and the upcoming performance: 

Apart from the moon landing itself what inspired you to want to retell the Moon Landing story as a children’s picture book. Can you recall what you were doing on the day of the moon landing? (Extract taken from book)

July 21 2019 will mark the fiftieth anniversary of the moon landing. The first step was taken at 12.56pm Australian Eastern Standard Time on Monday July 21 1969.
I remember very clearly the day man landed on the moon, as many people around my age do. I was living in a country town called Peterborough 260 kilometres north of Adelaide, in South Australia. It was a bitterly cold day and just as Neil Armstrong was preparing to walk down the ladder and place his foot on the moon, something else incredible was happening outside my window. The wind dropped and my world was suddenly gripped by an unnerving stillness. Then, to my utter amazement, soft gentle snow began to fall. It fell like feathers shaken free from a pillow and floated down without a breath of wind. The only other snow I had ever seen there – and ever did see in all the years I lived there – could hardly be called snow, because it melted before it hit the ground. This particular fall, however, was thick. It was steady, it was gentle, and for a child of eleven, it was magical. And because it was such an incredibly rare event, I found it very difficult to decide whether to stay inside and watch man walk on the moon, or go outside and play in the snow. In the end, I did both. As I watched Neil Armstrong take that step, the snow continued to fall and lay a thick white blanket, about 15 – 20 centimetres thick. It continued to fall long enough for me to be able to finish watching Neil and then go outside, build a snowman, throw a snowball, and leave footprints in the snow just like the footprints Neil Armstrong was leaving for the moon.

I have written this piece, my strongest recollections of that day in the hope that others will share with children their experiences and memories, and encourage children to ponder and be excited by the endless possibilities in their future. Just as everyone was, particularly children, back in 1969.

Describe the journey of how your book ’Touch the Moon’ was transformed from the page to the stage in ‘Space Race’?

My co-collaborator in this project is my dear friend, renowned arranger and composer, Glyn Lehmann. It was when Glyn and I were chatting about projects we were undertaking and setting a writing and production schedule that this first came up. When I was working on the first drafts of ‘Touch the Moon’ I had also written a song – I always write a song when working on a book; it is part of my creative process. I never share the songs with anyone though but on this occasion I did. I played the song, which is called Cold July Day, to Glyn and it captured his imagination. We have actually recorded it and it has been released under our ‘band’ name The Lunar Sea. From there Glyn had the idea to create something bigger. So as the process evolved, I took to writing the lyrics for five more songs that tracked the events and excitement of the Space Race in the sixties. Glyn took the lyrics and created this incredible music. These five songs together with Cold July Day are now the ‘Space Race’ song cycle that will be performed with the Orchestra and the Young Adelaide Voices – I still can’t believe it!

Describe your anticipation in seeing your story Touch the Moon take from the page to the stage?

This is very difficult for me to put in words to be honest; A strange thing to say perhaps as a writer but I find myself turning to clichés – it is a dream come true. One of the most overwhelming things is that there are so many strands to this ‘story’. This is not only about the book; it is my childhood. It is the bringing to life – in story, song, image and music – of a strong memory of an incredible time in my life. When put in those terms, all I can see is how incredibly fortunate I am to have this happen. I’m sure anyone would agree that having a childhood memory, that took place in a very ordinary house in a remote country town, presented in such a powerful way is mind blowing! Suddenly the ordinary becomes extraordinary.

Who will be sitting alongside of you during the world premiere performance?

I am the youngest of eight children – so my family is enormous! They are all so incredibly supportive – so they will there!

Did you provide any instructions to composer Glyn on how you wanted the music to sound?

Apart from the song ‘Cold July Day’ which was a finished work when I played it to Glyn, I let Glyn explore his own creative space. I think that space is very important in creative partnerships and I make the analogy of working with an Illustrator when they are working on one of my books – I allow them creative space for interpretation. As things evolve Glyn and I talk things over during the process. I might have made suggestions about the feel and approach that certain songs might need given the lyric I had created and what I was thinking at the time of writing. Some of the lyrics had a certain ‘flavour’ that I felt might need a particular approach or particular ‘feel’ reflective of the time in which the work was set.

What is your first recollection of seeing and hearing the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra?

Many years ago, as a very young teacher, in my first few months of teaching, I took some children to see the orchestra at the Octagon Theatre (now demolished) in Elizabeth. I think it must have been part of the community program back then. It was very exciting for the children and for me!

As a writer do you have a favourite word or phrase?

Enjoy every passing moment … and revel in the living of the next.

The book is dedicated to the Moroney family, who are there are what are the special memories you’ve shared with them?

The Moroney family lived across the street from us. They have always been good friends to me and my family. We had a lot of fun together; including building snowmen on July 21st 1969!

Today children are spending large periods of time in front of screens as an author what would you say to them to encourage them to find joy through books, writing and or music?

As I sit and write the answer to this question I am in front of a screen so it would be foolish for me to denigrate the importance and obvious influences that screens have on our lives. I honestly believe books and screens can co-exist. There was a time a few years ago when the publishing industry was concerned about the impact of screens on the ‘real books’ in our world. As time has gone on though the two platforms have come to work very well together. There will never be a replacement for the feeling a ‘real book’ offers. I have answered from the perspective of an author and have not gone into the importance of physical exercise and outdoor play… that is something for another time and maybe another book touching on that theme!

At what age did you first find joy in writing? What was your first story that had to be told?

Well, I started writing when I was a teenager. The truth is, I wanted to be a rock star! I listened to the likes of Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Van Morrison, Bruce Springsteen and so on. When I bought records I would, like everyone did then, sit and read the record sleeves over and over and over again. I studied the lyrics and started to write some. So, this is another exciting link to the project – what rock star wouldn’t dream of hearing something they create played by an orchestra!

Tickets available: aso.com.au/events/space-race/


Canna Campbell Shows Us Why Money Matters

Canna Campbell Shows Us Why Money Matters

Canna Campbell shows us why money matters

Canna Campbell knows a few things about money. With over a decade of experience in financial planning, including a successful career in banking and running her own boutique finance agency, she is passionate about educating and empowering women and families to create and sustain financial freedom.

Canna’s new book Mindful Money, offers a holistic approach to finance, coupled with her accessible attitude and enthusiasm to share achievable strategies that could affect positive change in your life, the book guides readers through the practical realities of managing finances.

We chat with Canna about how we can all be more mindful with money, budgeting for families and the best way to set up our children with healthy financial habits.

Tell us a little bit about your journey to discovering your own financial freedom and how that has led you to want to help others on their own pathways by writing Mindful Money?

I’ve been in financial planning since my early twenties, and I also started investing at a young age. I noticed that a lot of my girlfriends were asking me concerning questions like “what do you mean you don’t have any credit card debt?” or “what do you mean you’ve got emergency savings?” and I realised there was a big black hole in basic financial literacy. Basic financial literacy isn’t taught in schools or universities. There are accounting, commerce and business degrees focused around business and corporations, but no one ever shows you how to do a personal budget, why you should never have a credit card debt, how to use a credit card wisely or how to build an investment portfolio. I realised that I needed to help fix this, because financial stress is huge. They say that 30-35% of divorces are caused by financial stress, but it’s actually the one area you have so much more control over, and if I can show people how to make their lives that little bit easier, then I’m proud and happy to do that.

What advice would you give to parents about teaching our kids how to be smart with money and laying the foundations for future success?

Number one is always lead by example. Our children are sponges, and constantly watching us. Always educate, but come from a place of empowerment so your children understand what you’re explaining to them and feel part of it. Don’t just stop at savings. Savings is one third of the big picture; it’s great for your child to have a savings account, but also show them the power of investing because they have the benefit of time. If you can teach a child compounding interest, particularly through investment, not just savings, that’s going to set them up for life.

Tell us a little bit about the importance of having a ‘money mindset’.

It’s about having the right attitude and engagement with your finances and along with it, empowerment. You could set a series of great financial goals, but if you don’t understand why they’re important to you, the benefits and value system that it triggers, they’ll end up being soulless goals, and you’ll either give up, get distracted, or if you do actually achieve the goal it will feel meaningless. There’s no gratification or sense of pride, and they’re really important things to have in creating new habits. The mindset is essential; we all have some form of self-destructive patterns or triggers, it’s the investment of a little bit of time to understand them so you can catch them, and avoid jeopardising your successes.

What do you believe are some of the most common misconceptions about money?

We need to be talking about investing. Building up a passive income stream so that we have a sense of financial freedom in our lives, even if it’s a small amount, will help take some of the stress and pressure off our own mental and physical wellbeing.
Another misconception is that you don’t need to worry about paying off your mortgage any quicker than the 30-year term the bank prescribes. It is significantly in your interest to pay off your home as quickly as possible, so that you free up your cash flow to be able to diversify, invest elsewhere, increase your family’s lifestyle and wellbeing, or start planning for things like retirement. One of the best pieces of advice I can give someone who has a mortgage is to actually pay it off as quickly as possible.

Quick tips to unlocking your financial freedom

  1. Passive income is key. Make sure you’re building investments that pay an income stream
  2. Have a separate savings account which is the financial goal account to put money aside into for long term investing
  3. Learn about ETF’s (exchange traded funds) and listed investment companies because that’s the way to build an immediately diversified portfolio
  4. Always reinvest your income if you can afford to
  5. Try and contribute on a regular basis, through a habit system, so you don’t think about it, you just do it
  6. Always track, review and monitor your passive income and watch it grow

Canna’s guide to family budgeting

  1. Have four different bank accounts:
    everyday account linked to your debit card, where your salary is deposited and most of your expenses withdrawn
    life + emergency money which is your financial float account for recurring quarterly, biannual and annual expenses, and a set amount of money for emergencies
    lifestyle goal account which could be a family holiday savings account
    financial goal account where you put money aside to invest for your family’s financial wellbeing e.g. extra mortgage repayments or money to eventually put into superannuation
  2. Keep all accounts with the same bank, so if you need to quickly transfer money, it’s there within seconds, and also from an efficiency perspective, you can see your entire cashflow situation on one screen
  3. Check your account balances and transactions daily, to keep yourself informed and ahead of upcoming expenses
  4. Even if you can only afford to put $1 into your financial goal account, that’s ok! Creating the habit is the most important principle here
  5. Keep it simple: if you haven’t set up your finances in a really simplistic way, you’re not going to engage, it becomes too hard, it’s too easy to put off and do another day

You can find a detailed guide to family budgeting and setting up your banking ritual in Mindful Money

Mindful Money is available at Dymocks Hyde Park RRP $34.99
@cannasass @sugarmammatv

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