Plenty to celebrate in the most challenging of years

It has been another year of unprecedented unrest and turmoil, not only for our industry but our country and the world. 

TWAL has not managed to emerge unscathed as two of our initiatives had to be set aside during the Covid-19 pandemic, Women Driving Transport Careers which is now being renewed and the first programme will take place in February 2022 and the Learning Initiatives Breakfast series. 

Although we did plan three of these in Sydney, Melbourne, and Perth, they were ultimately cancelled. We will set plans for, and a theme for these early in the new year.

The Creating Connections Mentoring programme continued with the commitment from those involved; and membership also continued to build, and we were able to continue to seek more benefits for members.

We nominated several members for various awards this year, Merry Manton in the Women in Industry awards, she is a finalist in the Safety Advocacy and the Excellence in Transport Awards; Annastasia Denigan who won the Queensland Trucking Association Woman of the Year. Unfortunately, the ATA awards, the Women in Industry awards and the AFIA awards were postponed until next year.

The Trish Pickering Memorial Award was awarded at the end of year Melbourne dinner to Hazel Whitmore, the recipient is chosen by the board and is confirmed by the sponsor. 

This year we took the Father’s Day raffle online as many of our members especially corporate members were working from home. This worked really well and were able to run the raffle at minimal cost to the organisation, we will continue to use this option in the future.

The Driving the Difference scholarships were offered once again this year and we were able to offer six scholarships, as always to very deserving winners. We hope to offer the scholarships again in 2022.

We had some changes to the board during this year with Jodie Broadbent resigning in February and Cinzia Chu in June. We also lost life member, Steve Post, who passed away in June this year.

We held events for International Women’s Day in Melbourne and Sydney and joined the QTA in Brisbane. Also in March, we were part of the NTI Lunch and Learn which focussed on the Creating Connections Mentoring programme. Jacquelene also presented at the ARTIO, Women in Transport Breakfast in Sydney. 

In April, I was invited to present at the Snowy Monaro Regional Heavy Vehicle Freight Forum, the Senate RRAT Reference Committee and become a member of the Victorian DoT Women in Transport Steering Committee. 

In May True Ross took part in the LOGEX Career Expo at Prairiewood High School and in June I attended a careers day at Campbelltown Performing Arts High School. This was part of a Inspire Australia Programme.

We also had our usual stunningly successful Brisbane Truck Show breakfast with Coralie Chapman, Elizabeth McGrath and the Manton Family.

In August, none of the board was able to attend a pared back function at the Alice Springs Road Transport Hall of Fame but we did hold the opening breakfast and provide the lucky door prize and other information. 

In September, the Women Driving Transport Careers Programme was a finalist at the Victorian Training Awards in the Industry Collaboration Category.

In October, we commenced our new research – Women Working in Transport – A Snapshot! Revisited.  

From January to June, we hosted the successful Driving the Difference Show on IETV but the board decided not to continue with the show into the new financial year. We have grown our social media presence substantially; launched an Instagram account and a YouTube channel. This adds to our Facebook group, Facebook page and our LinkedIn Page.

We also had meetings with Young Professional Women Australia and Women in Marine, and had an article in Trading Places Magazine. 

Unfortunately, our Driving the Difference conference which was to be held in May has been postponed until June 3-5, 2022. 

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