Rob and I recently spent a week locked up in a farmhouse near Lismore writing a Bushfire Recovery Grant for a client on the North Coast. During our research it came to our realization that we knew just the right person who could help us, someone from 45 years ago: our former Housemaster (a very schoolboy term). As we recently wrote, our business began over fifty years ago during boarding school so it brought us to revisit those days as well.
Roger, as former Managing Director and Board Member of Capilano Honey and Buderim Ginger, was able to offer some great insights into the agribusiness sector that we were able to incorporate into the grant. After a short trip across the border from Queensland (return pass pasted on his front window), we met with Roger at Lismore’s Richmond Hotel to catch up on old times and more importantly to discuss the future of Australian agriculture with the ongoing pressures of Covid, weather events, and the trade relations change taking place.
The work we did involved a solid 100-hour week doing research and finalizing the application. A philosophy we’ve always had within Vebiz is that it is consistently better to have a project ready for a grant, rather than have a grant looking for a project to do. Our Northern Rivers client definitely had this project prepared for some time and we saw that with the speed that they were able to mobilize the information necessary for the grant.
The client: Gather By. They are a regenerative agribusiness producing medicinal and therapeutic honey – a high-grade Australian Manuka Honey and we wish them all the best because it is of utmost importance to their whole industry to be able to recover from the bush fires they endured during 2019 and 2020 then to be followed up by the slowdown caused by the Covid crisis. Gather By is an extraordinary closed-loop, for-profit social enterprise worth supporting and we are very proud to be working with them on several fronts.
Visit them at www.GatherBy.org