Mum on write path to chase away the monsters

28 Jul


By Lucinda Bassam and Danielle Moritomo, Bond University Journalism students

A Gold Coast mother-of-two has written a children’s book to help her kids combat severe night time terrors.

Titled ‘Mum’s Marvellous Monster Spray’ the book was written by Libby Want and her family as a way to help her two children Sidney, four and William, 22 months with their night time terrors.

“Each afternoon when we got home we would sit down and write a page of this story as a family,” Mrs Want said.

It wasn’t long until Mrs Want started to see a change in her children’s sleeping patterns.

“The story started to work, Sidney was having less nightmares and we were all getting a lot more sleep,” she said.

Mrs Want said that she hopes to inspire other families that have children distressed by night terrors.

“This book aims to make night time a fun, easy experience for families by helping their children make friends with the monsters under their bed,” she said.

Lismore State School teacher Joan Geihe received an overwhelmingly positive response from her class when she read the book to her year two and three classes.

“I read the book to them and they wanted to come up with different ideas to work more with the book which surprised me,” Ms Geihe said.

“The thing that stood out to me was that the children really understood and connected with it, with one kid even asking if we had it in the library as he wanted to take it home and show his parents.”

Sally Thibault, a councillor who works with children, regularly agrees that the story is a valuable resource for parents.

“This book is a valuable resource as it gives parents who may not know how to handle night terrors the means to help their children,” Mrs Thibault said.

“I would recommend parents to read to this their children as this is a wonderful tool that can help families work toward recovery from night terrors.”



‘Disco Boobs’ trend at Splendour gets the cold shoulder

28 Jul


By Caitlin Lee, Bond University Journalism Student

Glitter returned as a trend at Splendour in the Grass this year but rather than adding sparkle to festivalgoers faces and outfits, for many it replaced upper-body clothing.

Described as ‘Disco Boobs’ by the online community, pictures and footage of people embracing this trend over the weekend went viral online.

A popular stall at the event this year called ‘Glitoris’ was where many paid to take on the trend of body glitter.

At the tent, the process had to comply with the Festival’s regulations against nudity.

Bond student Nikky Johansen was camping with a girl who had opted for Glitter Boobs on the Saturday of the festival and said the cold weather eventually took its toll.

“Yeah she was cold, she went back to the camp to get a jacket once the sun went down” said Ms Johansen.

“I would never do it but I wouldn’t judge someone on how they want to dress at Splendour.”

Local grandmother Joan Colman saw Disco Boobs and other Splendour trends on Facebook and said she didn’t like the concept.

“I would be so disappointed to see a photograph like this of one of my grandchildren,” Ms Colman said.

Ms Colman also said she worried about the girls’ safety in opting to dress like this at Splendour.

“There are so many creeps around and these girls aren’t leaving much to the imagination,” she said.

“I just don’t understand why would their mothers let them out of the house like that, especially in the middle of winter.”

Model and Social Media Influencer Laura Evans has worked with many brands and said that this trend could damage a participant’s self image and future job opportunities.

“Just from experience, agencies and brands look a lot at a girl’s self image when scouting them for shoots or ambassadorship and if you are dressing like that, you are not giving yourself a good self image,” said Ms Evans

“Splendour is a great place to make a fashion statement but there are so many classier ways to do so.

“It was freezing over the weekend and I was wearing proper clothing and two jackets, so I can’t even begin to imagine how cold they must’ve been.”


Film festival a lost opportunity for students

28 Jul

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By Luke Nicholas Freeman, Bond University Journalism student

Staff of the Gold Coast Film Festival are frustrated that the event remains an untapped resource for film students.

Every year the Gold Coast Art Centre hosts the festival which contains many panel-based and networking opportunities that would benefit students wanting a career in film, said Festival Advisor and Bond University Academic Darren Fisher.

“Film festivals generally are unutilised by students,” he said.

“It’s a global thing and as an educator it is always fascinating and sometimes depressing to see fantastic opportunities go wanting.”

Mr Fisher said that attending film festivals for students is a great tool going to waste.

“Getting your first network is so important, to get some runs on the board…It’s fantastic to unitise that,” Mr Fisher said.

“I would argue that it’s a good indicator of who’s really serious.”

Festival Director Lucy Fisher makes it her job to provide festival goers with interesting and unmissable experiences.

 “As a festival our strategy and direction has shifted to be more about bringing films to life through film experiences that are uniquely Gold Coast,” she said.

 “This year’s festival was the most successful to date, we achieved our goal of over 15,000 attendees.”

 Despite the success of the 2017 festival Mrs Fisher still wants to see more young filmmakers attending.

 “We’ve had uni students being offered internships in the industry,” Mrs Fisher said.

 “There’s this missed opportunity for students to actually see what their peers are doing and gaining a critical analysis.”

Mrs Fisher also commits to giving women of the film industry a voice during the festival.

“We commit to having 50% of all of our speakers being women,” she said.

“It’s something all festivals should really be looking at because if you don’t make those small changes nothing’s going to change.”

Bond University Student Declan Caruso interned during the festival and said festival environments are essential for young creatives.

“I was in charge of anything related to media content across the board,” he said.

“Everyone knows that you’re playing the game and that’s the kind of unwritten rule as there’s just a certain courtesy that we all have to abide by.

“I was actually disappointed that so few people from my cohort turned up.”

Mr. Caruso’s graduation film Skin Like Bark has also benefited thanks to the exposure he gained while interning.

“One of the Producers on my project I met at the festival and the fact that her and I hit it off so well is why she is coming to help.”

The Gold Coast Film Festival occurs annually and for further visit:


Kids to learn basic life saving at Palm Beach Aquatic

28 Jul


By Sophie Walker, Bond University Journalism Student

Five-year-old Roxy Wessels will be one of the first children in the country to be taught CPR in an initiative led by Palm Beach Aquatic Centre in July.

The aquatic facility is leading the way in water safety education by holding family based CPR training aimed at teaching children.

Cara Wessels, mother of learn to swim student Roxy, said that she is impressed with Palm Beach Aquatic Centre for being the first centre in the country to hold a course like this and will attend the course with Roxy.

“If you start teaching children these skills when they are young, they will know what to do and not panic in an emergency situation,” she said.

Ms Wessels said that it is critical that children know some basic CPR from an early age.

“A lot of people probably think they never need to know these skills as they will never face these situations,” she said.

“But a lot of unexpected accidents do occur around the house.

“Your child may be the only one there in an emergency situation, if they’ve received training in CPR, they may be the one to save your life.”

Stuart Casey a trainer from Royal Life Saving Society Queensland (RLSSQ) will host the course.

Mr Casey said that although RLSSQ has been providing community run CPR programs for over a century this is the first time an aquatic centre has promoted and led a CPR course.

“I congratulate the team at Palm Beach Aquatic Centre for the effort in getting this program up and running,” he said.

Mr Casey said RLSSQ hopes that the whole community will benefit by educating all family members about water safety.

“Our motto is everyone can be a life saver,” he said.

“The more members of our community trained in water awareness and the dangers in and around the water the more it will benefit everyone.

“In the past young children have administered CPR on other children and infants and it has proven the difference for those people in need of help.”

About 300 people drown in Australia each year and most of these deaths are preventable.

Palm Beach Aquatic Centre manager Joanna Hogg said it is important children learn CPR skills as early as possible.

“With the amount of drowning’s the media reported on last summer, I wanted to encourage our lean to swim families to learn CPR,” she said.

“There is documented evidence of young children calling emergency services and saving lives, not just in aquatic environments but in the home and community.”

Mrs Hogg said she would like to see all aquatic centres offer the program to help put a stop to emergencies that can be prevented with the correct training.

The course will be held for all learn to swim families on Friday July 28, 2017 from 11am-1pm.

It will focus on the behaviours associated with drowning, how to look for and identify a distressed swimmer and how CPR can lead to positive outcomes for the patient.

To find out more please contact Palm Beach Aquatic Centre on 5534 4188.

Coast family save children around the world

28 Jul

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By Jacinta Franks and Dinushka Gunasekara, Bond University Journalism students

A Gold Coast family turned their back on corporate life 11 years ago  to establishs themselves as a successful charity saving children around the world.

Founders Andrew and Julie Colquhoun started their organisation, Captivating International, in 2008 after they took a trip to China with their son, Tyler, and saw the many disadvantaged children living in poverty.

Administration manager and close friend Daniella May said the family, who are in China and were unavailable for contact, is determined to break the cycle of poverty.

“We say this child’s problem stops here with us,” she said.

The charity has projects running in China, Nepal and Kenya where they work with local organisations to find where they can best help.

“There is so much that needs to done in the world and it can become quite overwhelming sometimes when you see how much,” Mrs May said.

“They’re asking for help here and they need help there and it’s really hard to say no sometimes and unfortunately that sometimes does occur.”

However, Captivating International’s main focus is on improving the life and future of girls.

“We do a lot of work in Nepal and that’s again focusing on girls and young women who are at risk and possibly even already in trafficking,” Mrs May said.

Every year, the charity intercepts about 5000 Nepali girls before they can be lost in the human trafficking world.

“It’s heartbreaking the things that these girls go through and it’s just not fair,” Mrs May said.

“You sort of see this and think there are girls that are just suffering who shouldn’t have to experience this inhumane treatment.”

They also run a child sponsorship program with about 250 girls and, in Kenya, they have placed 267 orphans in families.

The charity will also be rolling out 200 greenhouses to single mother families so that they can grow food to eat and sell.

“There are days when you sort of really wonder if you’re making a difference in the world but there are days that it becomes really obvious,” Mrs May said.

“I see stories and letters from our people who are on the ground and they’re from the girls – whether it be in China or Nepal – who are incredibly grateful for the opportunity that they’ve been given because of Captivating.”

Captivating International will host the annual 5km walk/run global event, ‘Stop the Traffick’, for anti-human trafficking as well as an auction gala night in China as fundraising.

More information on both events can be found at



Seaside Sounds brings together community

28 Jul

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By Emma Griffith, Bond University Journalism student

Local artist Polly Snowden is bringing the community closer together for live music, dancing, food trucks, and family fun with an event called Seaside Sounds.

Polly began Seaside Sounds three years ago in Mudgeeraba and has extended the event to include Burleigh Heads, Coolangata, Kirra and Palm Beach, which run similar events throughout the year.

“The best part about these events for me is seeing what I have created for my three-year-old daughter, I have brought together the sort of community that I want to live in,” said Mrs Snowden.

Mrs Snowden’s inspiration for the event was to bring people together and take advantage of the parks and public spaces in the area.

“We spent all these council funds on creating these beautiful public spaces but aren’t actually utilizing them too much.

“The continued success of this program has kept it growing and moving to other parts of the city.”

Mrs Snowden said that Burleigh Heads has had the most successful series of shows because of its location and popularity.

“Everyone loves to go to Burleigh point it’s the most iconic headland of our city so it’s really exciting to see it grow there,” she said.

These events are all council funded, but without a very big budget Mrs Snowden and her production assistant have had to get creative with the stage.

Mrs Snowden is also the music director for Swell Sounds, so with all her running around for various events she needed a portable stage to connect to the back of her car.

Her small team came up with the idea of a converted wagon that they have decorated to fit the energy of the event as their stage.

Seaside Sounds supports local musicians who perform inside the miniature stage.

“It’s a balance of creating opportunity for local artists and showcasing their talent,” Mrs Snowden said.

Gold Coast local Alex Heil goes to the event with his friends every Sunday in July for the music and entertainment.

“It’s a great atmosphere where people of all ages come together even in the winter time and can relax and enjoy the sunset in an epic setting,” Mr Heil said.

The event has brought people together from all sides of the city, and it has turned out to be more successful than expected for Mrs Snowden and her small team.

“It’s a free event that is not consumerism based, so if you don’t want to spend a cent you don’t have to, the community responds well to this,” Mrs Snowden said.

For further information you can go to Seaside Sounds Facebook page at “Seaside Sounds – Burleigh Point.” The last show in Burleigh will take place on July 30 at 2pm.


Raindrops make a splash at Broadbeach restaurant

28 Jul

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By Sarah Wyness, Bond University Journalism student

A local restaurant is the first in Australia to serve the famous ‘Raindrop Cake’, and since its release it has made a splash among customers.

The ‘Raindrop Cake’, a desert that looks like a raindrop, was originally created by Darren Wong and served in Smorgasburg in New York.

Since then the desert has gone viral.

Harajuki Gyoza was the first Australian restaurant to do their own take on the desert.

Local foodie Luke Holtham was drawn to trying the desert after seeing it on the Harajuku Gyoza Facebook page and then on the news.

He was finally able to try the famous desert after it being sold out at his local Harajuku Gyoza at Broadbeach every other time he had gone.

Mr Holtham said it was very different and definitely worth the hype.

“It had very clean flavours which is what you would expect from a Japanese desert but the molasses brought some western sweetness,” he said.

“It was such a unique eating experience and from all the Masterchef hype people generally in Australia are a lot more adventurous in their eating.”

Since trying the desert Mr Holtham has recommended it to many.

“It fits with what people are looking for, a unique eating experience with a cultural flair,” he said.

The desert, which is a spin on a traditional Japanese dish Mizu Shingen Mochi, is made from mineral water and agar to create the look of a raindrop.

The Harajuku Gyoza serves a version made with spring water, kinako (roasted soy flour), ground sesame and kuromitsu (Japanese sugar syrup), as well as a fruit variation.

The desert served at Harajuku Gyoza costs $6.


In The Bin goes M-rated to gain broader audience

21 Jul

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By Sarah Wyness, Bond University Journalism student

A fresh approach to this year’s Varsity Lakes In the Bin Short Film Festival is being taken to attract a broader audience.

The film festival that travels around Australia will be at Varsity Lakes for the third time this year as part of the Winterfest on Saturday, July 29.

Winterfest coordinator Sue Horkings said that while the last two years the films have been geared towards children, they are now aiming for a more mature audience.

“The last two years have been G or PG rated, so they were more targeted at kids and we had that as an outdoor space, and it hasn’t been that well received in Varsity,” she said.

“We thought that targeting it at more mature audiences might get a better response.”

In the Bin Festival Director Jed Cahill said that moving towards an older audience allows for better quality content to be showed.

“Previously we’ve done it more as a family festival but this year its for a mature audience, and that means it opens it up to the higher quality program,” he said.

“We really believe the Gold Coast deserves to have the fully professional program.”

In the Bin Film Festival started in 1999 as there was no other film festival on the Gold Coast, said Jed.

“Since starting we have put a primary focus on quality because we feel as though there’s no short film fests on the Gold Coast that demonstrate that level of quality,” he said.

“It’s an opportunity to showcase the best short films from right around the world.”

Having recently been at Currumbin in May, the film festival will be showing the same program on July 29 at the ‘Nighthawk’ theatre at Varsity College.

More than 400 entries from around the world have been narrowed down to 12 to be showcased at varsity College’s Nighthawk theatre.

Sue said the festival filled a void at Varsity.

“You’ve got the university right there at your doorstop, you’ve got the biggest public school in Queensland right there, so you can imagine there’s that demographic,” she said.

“This year we are trying to make it a bit quirkier and edgy so that’s why we’ve gone for M rated films.”

Tickets for In the Bin are $13 per person and can be booked on the website, with each ticket entering into a competition to win a three-day cruise.


Coast manufacturer builds Australia’s first electric buses

21 Jul


By George Lysnar, Bond University Journalism Student

Australia’s first electric buses are being designed, engineered and built on the Gold Coast.

Coast manufacturer Bustech, with Precision Components Australia, was granted $2 million by the South Australian government to build two e-buses, which are being live-trialled in Adelaide.

Bustech General Manager and Chief Engineer Marc Cleave said two entirely Australian designed and manufactured e-buses were built within six months.

He said the Adelaide department built the e-bus frames, while the Gold Coast department designed and assembled everything else.

“98% of the parts are bought from Australia, with a lot of the supplies bought around Queensland,” Mr Cleave said.

He said the e-buses have key advantages over regular diesel buses, including severely reduced environmental impacts and maintenance time and costs.

Using cutting-edge Toshiba batteries e-buses can be charged up to 80% within just 10 minutes with correct infrastructure.

The two trial e-buses were launched in Adelaide on June 23 and are currently undergoing non-passenger testing, Mr Cleave said.

Bustech is the bus manufacturing arm of Transit Australia Group and is based in Burleigh.

TAG Chief Commercial Officer Damien Brown said there is a massive opportunity in e-transport for the economy and jobs.

“We project it’s going to be a $22 billion market by 2020,” he said.

“There’s a massive global push toward e-transport, especially in Europe and Asia.”

He said the response from the South Australia government and Department of Transport for the two trial e-buses has been overwhelmingly positive so far.

“Currently we’re employing software engineers fulltime, which is something we’ve never done before,” Mr Brown said.

Mr Cleave said the next step would be large-scale production.


CEOs sleep rough to raise aid for homelessness

21 Jul

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By Sophie Walker, Bond University Journalism Student

Gold Coast executives spent a cold and uncomfortable night recently at the St Vinnies CEO Sleepout to fundraise and bring awareness to homelessness on the Gold Coast.

Dr Rebekah Doley, Director of the Centre for Forensic and Interpersonal Risk Management (C-FIRM) at Bond University, took part in the event.

Dr Doley said that it was a great event that gave some insight into what it is like to be homeless.

“It was uncomfortable but it is supposed to be uncomfortable,” she said.

“I was in the army so I’m used to camping but going to sleep hearing people walk around you and knowing that you only had a piece of cardboard over you it was just a weird experience.”

Dr Doley said it had been a long time since she had volunteered and she wanted to give back to the community.

“Homelessness is something that you see when you go to big cities and something I’ve encountered overseas so I thought well that’s a good start,” she said.

Dr Doley raised $3000 and said that she was exceptionally grateful for the support that she received from her sponsors.

She said she will return again next year, hopefully in a team with her colleagues.

“I’d really encourage people to do it,” she said.

“I think it’s a great opportunity to support your community.

“It was hard enough to be memorable but not too hard to be off putting.”

Shane Klintworth, Executive Officer at the St Vincent de Paul Society’s South Coast Branch, said the event was a success this year with 228 CEOs participating, almost double last year’s participation.

“We were rapt with how engaged the participants were with the whole event and that is really important to us because it indicates that people are understanding the message, and then they become advocates with their families and their friends in their communities so they can start talking about homelessness and what the issues are and how those people can become involved,” Mr Klintworth said.

In 2016, 1300-1400 people per night slept on the streets of the Gold Coast.

Mr Klintworth said this year homelessness figures have increased to 1500 people.

“Homelessness can be a really big issue that people don’t know how to address and through the CEO Sleepout St Vinnies aims to debunk myths about homelessness,” he said.

“It’s not just about the old wine-o with the bottle on the corner with the bottle of wine and the bag that sleeps rough.

“Most people on the Gold Coast who are homeless are actually women and children who are escaping domestic and family violence or people who are experiencing financial hardship or family breakdown.”

Fundraising efforts are still running.

To donate to the CEOs or see how to get involved in next year’s event visit Out Photo.jpeg.


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