Above: Rural entrepreneur Elizabeth Wharton says connections she made at the Rural Women’s Forum helped boost her business
“Growing up in rural Victoria, I am a farmer’s daughter and granddaughter of a ‘green thumb’. A love of plants and animals runs through my veins. I was the first person in my family to attend university, travel, live and work overseas. It was difficult at times but it built resilience, determination and leadership skills.
After completing a Bachelor of Agricultural Science and Bachelor of Commerce at The University of Melbourne, I worked for 15 years in stakeholder management, education and event coordination in agriculture, emergency management and tourism. This work offered the opportunity to travel to Europe and South America.
Life has not always been easy though. A series of experiences, including the unexpected passing of my father and a bullying episode, led me to lose my way. Attending the Victorian Rural Women’s Network’s (VRWN) forum in Creswick this year encouraged me to rediscover my identity and purpose. I want to help people feel more fulfilled, address feelings of isolation or loneliness and nurture self-esteem. This desire has led to my business, ‘Sebright Adventures’.
Sebright Adventures provides agricultural industry professionals, singles and those in isolated or rural communities the opportunity to get out and about and learn while having fun. My tour business has two focuses: custom agricultural study tours and relaxing trips that highlight agricultural produce or involve craft activities.
I’m developing a website and business strategy and I have held my first tour showcasing the Victorian Potato Industry. Attending conferences such as Hort Connections and joining groups including the VRWN, Southern Business Women’s Network and International Society for Horticultural Science have provided a valuable support network.
I believe that getting out and about to see the world with others improves mental health, happiness and prosperity by connecting people and places. Through my business, I hope to help people explore and achieve, as travel can not only broaden horizons, but also change the world.” To find out more about Sebright Adventures, email [email protected]