RAVN Go Back <> Give Back competition!

Last night the Returned Australian Volunteer Network (RAVN)’s Go Back<>Give Back Competition winners were announced at the Australian Volunteers Program’s International Volunteer Day celebration in Melbourne.

Pete Julie and Blake
Go Back<>Give Back competition finalists Peta Owen, Julie Harris and Blake Gardiner awaiting the announcement of competition winners at the Australian Volunteers Program International Volunteer Day 2018 event in Melbourne.
The audience at the Australian Volunteers Program International Volunteer Day event in Melbourne eagerly awaits the announcement of the Go Back<>Give Back competition.

The nine competition finalists attended the event along with fellow returned volunteers, outgoing volunteers, program partners and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade representatives.

Watch the competition finalists’ highlights show reel.

The competition was launched in October by the Australian Volunteers Program to recognise the contribution of returned volunteers to development in our region, to celebrate lasting connections between returned volunteers and their partner organisations, and to mark International Volunteer Day 2018.

All 7,000 network members were invited to enter the competition by producing a short video pitch and project brief. The projects had to be developed in consultation with partner organisations, and the prize included $6,000, return flights and seven days accommodation. 

Originally, there were two prizes up for grabs - enabling returned volunteers to go and give back to their former partner organisations and support their work by completing a small development project together with a $6,000 prize.

But, as the video entries came flooding in, capturing beautiful stories of ongoing connection between returned volunteers and their former partner organisations and colleagues – it became clear that two prizes were not enough.

So, after receiving a total of 72 entries, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade decided to award an extra prize.

The winners of the 2018 RAVN Go Back Give Back competition are:

  • Peta Owen who volunteered in Vanuatu with ProMedical Vanuatu as a Senior Paramedic Clinical Instructor for her project, “Australian clinical observer placement for NiVanuatu ProMedical student paramedics”.
  • Rebecca Mitchell who volunteered in Solomon Islands with the National Referral Hospital as a Clinical Lecturer - Obstetrics and Gynaecology for her project, “Senior registrar and intern supervisor for SIGISSP (Obstetrics and Gynaecology).”
  • Leanne Wicker who volunteered in Vietnam with Save Vietnam's Wildlife as a Veterinarian for her project, “Wildlife Rescue Vietnam - Equipment and training to improve animal care”.

You can watch the winnner's video entries below.

Thank you to all our finalists

We would like to congratulate all the finalists on their high quality and thoughtful entries and thank them for travelling to Melbourne to participate in the Australian Volunteers Program’s International Volunteer Day event.

  • Ania Anderst who volunteered in Indonesia with Perkumpulan Keluarga Berencana Indonesia (Indonesia Planned Parenthood Association) as a Research and Development Officer for her entry, “PKBI library and youth space.” Watch Ania's entry here.
  • Blake Gardiner who volunteered in Cambodia with People in Need as a Geospatial Developer for his entry, “Phnom Penh Air Quality Monitoring Program.” Watch Blake's entry here.
  • Eddie (Muhammad) Ridwan who volunteered in Indonesia with Jaringan Masyarakat Sipil as a Website developer for his entry, “Improving Disaster Response in Lombok Using Village Information Systems.” Watch Eddie's entry here.
  • Elena Martin Avila who volunteered in Samoa with the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries as a Tissue Culture Advisor for her entry, “Supporting the Samoan Banana Industry.” Watch Elena's entry here.
  • Julie Harris who volunteered in Lao PDR with Free the Bears as an Eco-Tourism and Environmental Education Advisor for her project, “Educating to protect, preserve and enrich the life of Lao bears.” Watch Julie's entry here.
  • Kelly Hentschke who volunteered in the Philippines with Daraga Special School (Legazpi) as an Occupational Therapist for her entry, “Play to Progress - Tools and Training to support an Early Intervention Disability Program in Philippines.” Watch Kelly's entry here.