Hanging with Royalty

Last month Bianca, aka The Fish Chick, was fortunate to be a participant of the 2014 Emerging Pacific Leaders Dialogue (EPLD) along with about 100 other individuals from across the Pacific region.

As the Australian Study Tour’s Liaison Officer, Bianca spent one week visiting businesses, community groups and Government operations across Sydney, Canberra and Alice Springs with ten team members from across various Pacific Island countries, including New Zealand.

Together they met some incredible people and learnt about various styles of leadership. They also discovered achievements and uncovered challenges on various issues including the environment, economic development, good governance, sustainability and, overall, strengthening communities.

Despite being on the Study Tour that visited my home country, this trip was more culturally enriching than any other single thing I’ve ever done. This was partly due to spending time with an Afghan family in their home in western Sydney and meeting Indigenous Australians in remote communities in Northern Territory, but also because of the dialogue had and relationships built with my incredible team members from nine different countries across the Pacific,” said The Fish Chick.

A highlight of the trip, of course, was meeting and presenting to HRH Princess Anne as part of the closing plenary in Vanuatu. Spending time in an Indigenous community was also a stand-out experience, as was attending a function at Government House in Canberra and meeting Australia’s Governor General, Sir Peter Cosgrove.

EPLD was an incredible, life-changing experience that, without doubt, has changed my attitudes about certain issues, expanded my horizons on others, changed my way of thinking about leadership, and perhaps more than anything, given me a greater thirst for knowledge and drive to create change in our beautiful country ,” The Fish Chick said.

The Fish Chick thanks the Commonwealth Study Conferences and Emerging Leaders Pacific Dialogue committees for making such an experience possible.

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