Empowering First Nations women through culture and connection in Alice Springs
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Angie lives with her children in a stunning region of the New South Wales mid-north coast. She is fit and healthy.
She has also just launched her own business based on her great creative love, playing and producing electronic dance music. An outsider might look at her and think: some people have all the luck.
Rewind a few years, however, and Angie’s life looked a lot less idyllic. She was a young mother who was confined to hospital for months at a time with a chronic pain condition.
She had no use of her left arm and struggled to move her neck. Her ambitious business venture as co-owner of a bakery had come to an end. Life was super-tough, and the future looked bleak.
It has taken a lot of people to help rebuild Angie’s life The most important of those people? Angie herself.
“A lot of hard work has gone in to get me to where I am,” Angie says. I am grateful to a lot of different people for what they’ve done. It is a holistic approach.
“I’ve done a lot fitness-wise, starting from zero movement in my arm through to having a full range of movement and remission of symptoms.
“That’s a big process. I’ve made dietary changes, going from eating whatever, to a very healthy plant-based diet now.
“Mental health is a big part of it too, and that’s important for people to understand.
“I had to work through a lot of repressed trauma, go through all sorts of things, but it was worth it.”
Twelve months ago, another important part of the support network was put in place when Angie was signed up for the ParentsNext program.
Working with Bamara staff in Laurieton, she has been assisted to complete a range of music courses. Bamara has offered financial and other support for aspects of establishing her new business, from printing business cards to working out the legal requirements.
“As soon as I heard about it, I thought ParentsNext was a fantastic opportunity,” Angie says.
“From day one they have given me additional support to get back into the workforce.
“I haven’t been able to work for the last five years or so due to Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), but the things I am doing with Bamara have enabled me to get back into the workforce and start my own business.
“The CRPS stopped me living my life. Now I feel like I’m back living again.
“It wasn’t easy, but it makes you appreciate your life.
“And I’m very grateful for everything now because of what I’ve experienced.”
One thing that never changed through her life’s ups and downs was Angie’s devotion to music.
“I have always loved music, always loved singing, but I never viewed it as a financial option,” she says.
“However, I’ve spent the last two years studying the theory and business sides of music.
“I will launch my EDM (Electronic Dance Music) on YouTube and other platforms. I am also recording vocal presets, which are loops that other DJs or artists add into their performances.
“I will be starting out doing covers, then move into playing more of my own original material. I mix a lot of genres.
“I want my music to be a bit unique!”
Angie’s spare room has been converted into a music production and performance studio, with a keyboard, microphone, speakers, computer and DJ deck.
Her children – aged eight and almost two – love to muck around in the studio playing music together.
They also love the beach and the lake and the outdoors. Most of all, they love having a Mum who is back living her best life.
“It has taken a lot of work, but it’s sure worth it.”