Celebrating Women in 2019

Young Women of Achievement Winner (centre)

Over the weekend many people, woman and men, celebrated International Women’s Day.

It’s held to recognise how far women have come towards gender equality

We’ve come a long way since 1911 when women couldn’t vote, faced employment restrictions and workplace conditions.

Now in 2019 we’re running corporations, leading countries and have rights our grandmothers could only have dreamed about.

Where I live the Mining Industry plays a big role, so large in fact that it is right out our back door.

Mount Isa’s history began in 1923 with the discovery of lead, and over the past 96 years it has transformed into a community with one of the most productive mines in the world.

I wondered how far women had come in this male dominated industry because mine workers are known for their tough hard-working qualities.

Just as the Police force is still very male orientated.

The Woman of the Year winner speech

From all my research, the most interesting piece of information I found was about an Aboriginal women, who in 1910, along with her husband found the first samples of gold near a town Cape York Peninsula.

Her name was Kitty Pluto and although she was not explicitly mentioned as a miner or prospector, she was involved in the industry.

Kitty continued to prospect and made significant finds and is the only woman credited with discovering a goldfield in Australia.

Today women are being employed across the mining industry as truck drivers, engineers, geologists and more even though it is the most male-dominated industry in Australia.

It’s true we still have a way to go but we are doing better than many other countries around the world and as we continue to tackle the big issues and achieve wins, let’s celebrate who we are and how far we have come.

This year I attended the Zonta International Women’s Day dinner held at Buchanan Park in Mount Isa to celebrate resilience and strength of women in the Outback.

I had the opportunity to present both the awards and speak about the nominees.

My husband and I at the awards

The two woman who won were inspirational community members who aspire to goals that create balance and equality. However there were many deserving women nominated and I believe they should be congratulated too.

Special guest speakers Bronwyn Blake, the editor of the well-known book titled Gulf Women and Cath Walker from the Royal Flying Doctors Service delivered extraordinary talks about their individual journeys.

Storytellers Polly Kim, Tess Arnold, Kylie Camp and Sue Clarke shared their remarkable stories of surviving and thriving in the remote Gulf country.

The women spoke about how they coped with almost everything life and the environment threw at them including floods, drought, sickness and emergencies.

It was a pleasure to be part of such an amazing night and to listen to and met these truly passionate women.


Melissa Coleman View All →

I’ve always been passionate about storytelling and impressed by the influence it has on people and the decisions they make in life. I love engaging with the projects I work on, diving headfirst into the research, investigation, and production of stories and articles I feel are worth writing about.

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