Meet the speakers for TEDxKinjarling 2023.
Born in South Africa, Charles moved to Perth at the age of 11 with his family. This was the first of many life-changing adventures for Charles, who grew to focus on three key passions: family, adventure and making a difference.
His passion for outdoor adventures started at a young age growing up in South Africa, and these days Charles can often be found doing multi-day hikes exploring the Australian outback.
Charles strongly believes in always finding opportunities to make a difference. This was his motivation behind starting Inkwazi Adventures three years ago.
Through unique and immersive adventures, to date they have changed the lives of over 100 school students in South Africa. These life-changing impacts are long lasting and far reaching, improving communities and encouraging the conservation of nature.
In turn, these adventures also have a life-changing impact on Inkwazi Adventures supporters, encouraging them to reset, reflect and reconnect with what is important in their own Australian life… all part of power in the circle of change.
Charles works as a strategist and specialises in helping organisations navigate and adopt emerging technologies to transform their businesses and meet the future needs of their customers. He is also currently studying a Doctorate in Business Administration, looking to research the impact of digitisation and technology on work-life wellbeing.
Canadian born Rob Cridge moved to Australia at age 23 as a chef following an Albany girl he met in Paris on a Contiki Tour. They’ve now been married for 27 years and have two children.
Diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 1995, Rob has taken on the challenge of a TEDx talk the way he deals with pretty much everything.
“I won’t lie, I enjoy being in the limelight, and if I can make a difference for one person then that’s motivation enough.”
His achievements to date include:
• Carrying the Olympic Torch in Albany 2000
• UWA Pat Fox Memorial Winner for the Positive contribution towards study 2008
• MS person of the year 2012
• 2014 Competed for Australia in International Federation of Sailing World Titles to try to get qualification for the Rio Paralympics. He didn’t make it to Rio, but apparently, “had a great time trying!”
• Being named City of Albany Sports Person of the Year with a Disability 2014
• President of the MS Great Southern Outreach Group 1998-2012
Rob has been a practicing Hospital Social Worker for the past eight years and while he had to give up his passion for playing golf a few years ago, sails regularly, plays bowls with his mates and likes to win board games. A lot.
Tamala Ridge is the Founder and Director of the Institute for Spiritual Companioning. Tamala provides mentorship and training for coaches, practitioners and therapists to support greater transformation for their clients and teams through the processes of detoxification, spiritual development, professional skill development and trauma informed practices.
Her mission is to inspire others to connect with their hearts, intuition and divine wisdom and to trust that everyone already has all the answers within. After her own battle with addiction, and then a 10-year career as a drug and alcohol counsellor, she has become a self-confessed detox junkie who now gets high on the sobriety of her untainted soul.
Tamala believes that truth, love and courage are virtues required for leaders to create a positive impact in the world. She is committed to a spiritual path of integrity, unity and heart-driven leadership. She loves to spend as much time in the bush and at the beach as possible deeply immersed in nature as the medicine for her soul.
Known for her energy and enthusiasm, Tammy-Anne, known as ‘The Mind-Brain Lady’ – is a passionate teacher of young and old who has developed a brain-based holistic approach to wellbeing, teaching and learning. She is also a social entrepreneur, a business owner, a teacher, consultant & motivational presenter, and a social-emotional trainer and co-author.
Tammy-Anne is a qualified teacher and has taught at schools, homes, organisations and universities across Australia & New Zealand. She was a 2020 semi-finalist in the Western Australian Regional Achievement/Curtin Teaching Excellence Awards, and received Government funding to share her brain-based workshops at regional schools. At 28, Tammy-Anne left work to pursue her dream of educating and inspiring people to realise their true potential and to make a positive difference in the world. Tammy-Anne is passionate about teaching young people, teachers and parents and helping to create a better world, while playing a role in revolutionising education.
She appreciates the magic of nature, laughs every day, is fascinated by the unexplained, tries to always be better than she was yesterday, and will never stop learning.
For Dr Jonathan Ramachenderan, solving problems and relieving unnecessary suffering has been his north star and touchstone throughout his career, leading him to develop skills in pain medicine and anaesthesia, and to specialise in palliative medicine in his work as a General Practitioner.
Jonathan has worked in the Great Southern for 11 years, at the Great Southern Palliative Service at Albany Health Campus and on the Albany Community Hospice board.
Life at home is busy, boisterous and full of adventure with a wife and three sons. They love their “slow Saturdays” as a family and attend Albany Baptist Church.
In addition to clinical work, Jonathan loves to write as a reflective exercise in self-care from the stresses of medical work. He has published both academic and thought pieces on self-care, spirituality, pain medicine and palliative care.
In 2021, Jonathan won a national Palliative Care award recognising his clinical work and contribution to advocating the importance of self-care. Jonathan is deeply interested in the spiritual dimension of medicine and how this can be integrated to provide whole-person care.
Jennifer grew up on a farm in the shadows of the Porongurups where she learnt how to drive at 12 and how to drench sheep. At just three years of age her mother told her she was adopted. Nothing would ever be the same again.
In 1978, Jen started school at brand new Flinders Park primary and later attended Albany Senior High School, where she was then quickly dispatched to the big smoke to become a nurse.
After decades of working in the remote corners of Australia she returned to Albany to raise her young family. After an almost 30-year career as a clinical registered nurse, Jen left the world of caring for others in 2019, to finally care for herself.
Jen is now studying history at university with the aim to document Western Australia’s forced adoption era. In her ‘spare time’ she is lobbying the state government to hold a parliamentary inquiry to investigate the human rights violations of the forced adoption era.
When her brain gets too tired, she likes to chalk paint old furniture, garden and scrape 100 year old paint off the old doorways of her house.
Asha Bhat OAM migrated from India to Australia in 2004 with her husband and son before making Albany home in 2008.
Ms Bhat has led Southern Aboriginal Corporation as chief executive since 2013, providing family and domestic violence legal services, housing and homelessness support, employment opportunities, suicide prevention and health promotion for the Noongar community.
She is a vocal advocate for marginalised communities, not only in her work but also as a volunteer and has spread her time across a variety of community initiatives and committees. She leads with integrity and provides an example that is both inspiring and motivating to her people.
Asha is regularly sourced as a media spokesperson on matters relating to Indigenous and multicultural issues and even AFL and cricket. She enjoys classical Indian music, traditional Indian cooking, walking and watching sports.
Asha is self-motivated and tenacious in the face of adversity. She rises above problems with resilience and self-confidence, which is integral to her success as a business and community leader.