It’s 4.30 am and we’re awoken by the quintessential Aussie sound of crows squawking and kookaburras cackling in the backyard.
A huge, much anticipated day lies ahead of us. Today, the team at Avas support is attending the Buy from the Bush Festival at Summerland Camels, way out west in Harrisville QLD… Well, just half an hour from Redbank Plains and our Head Office for Avas Support. But, by the time we got there, it felt like we were way out in the bush.
The early start got us off to a busy morning… We packed the trailer with our comfy lounges and drove from the Redlands where our regional office is based and out to our main office in Redbank Plains by 6 am.
There were no stops for drive-thru breakfast or coffee and frankly, with our packed trailer, we wouldn’t be able to fit anyway.
So, we pushed through the urges for caffeine and packed the remainder of our festival gear. It included two arcade gaming tables, popcorn making equipment, kiddies’ camel craft items, an esky full of ice and drinks to keep us cool and hydrated, and all our information flyers and banners.
We headed out to the dusty road that led to Summerland Camel Farm — the perfect place for Avas to promote our essential care support services to families in the bush and to families in the city… all of whom have come to the fantastically inclusive community event that Avas Support was proudly the major sponsor for 2021.
The Avas road train rolled into the Buy from the Bush event by 7 am with a warm greeting from event organisers. They quickly rallied around us to ensure that we had everything we needed for our setup. As with all corporate events, there is always something that is forgotten… Today it was the bollards to hold up our signage…
Of course, as happens with these local events, we had the support of the local legends in the stand next to us… The Scenic Rim Tourism Board chipped in with sticky tape and Velcro to save the day. We proudly stretched our banner along the farm fences and across the huge spanning white tent, which was going to be our home for the day.
Like ants building a nest, the Avas team unpacked the trailer and set up an atmosphere like none other in the festival.
It was a space where families could come, sit and chat about life, a space where all were welcome, and a space where you could rest your weary feet from all the walking and shopping.
Just like that our team efforts came together. Mats out on the floor, cushions on chairs, arcade games plugged in, tables with sparkling, sequinned, show-stopping table cloths all set and adorned with kiddies’ camel craft activities. And of course, with freshly popped bags of aromatic popcorn to give away to the 4,000 passers-by our Avas digs for the day. It was only 8.30 am and it felt like it was noon already… Where was that coffee again???
Time for a quick team photo with those crazy camels and then all systems go with sunshine and lollipops… Okay, there were no lollipops but there were plenty of rainbows of joy as we welcomed the multitudes of Queensland adventure seekers to a fun-filled day of camel riding and spending their hard-earned dollars on essential items for their household, in the spirit of supporting the community.
From tooled leather handbags, turned wood bowls, and crocheted tea towels through to jars of pickles and jams, potted plants, soaps of every kind and gifts for absolutely every family member. There was something for everyone and every occasion… Not to mention the amazing food stalls, the smell of which permeated the air from the start of the day to the end.
It was wonderful seeing the joy on their faces as they swayed back and forth while riding on the back of the camels’ humps and moseyed down the well-beaten camel trail.
We came back to the Avas tent, where people from all walks of life came to find out what we do and how Avas fits into the community. Our Avas staff were only too pleased to advocate for those living with a disability and talk about how our essential service helps NDIS participants to live a full and happy life, achieve personal goals and participate in society. From Short Term Accommodation to Supported Independent Living and community access options — Avas Support can make lifelong goals a reality for those living with additional needs.
By the end of the day, the wind had kicked up a dust storm with tents blowing like tumbleweeds down the dusty fields. Avas staff dusted off their boots, sat on our comfy chairs and had a nice long drink with strangers that had become friends, enjoying a yarn with the locals.
As the sun had set once again, our staff packed the trailer and head back down the trail to the Avas office to unpack the day’s events.
With memories and new connections in mind we are so pleased we were asked to sponsor such a wonderful community event that brings everyone joy.