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Rustic Life Crew Blog Series

Welcome to our Rustic Life Crew blog series! Each month, a Rustic student who has travelled with us will share their inspiring thoughts and incredible stories. These students have been invited to join our Rustic Life Crew where they have opportunities to attend events, get involved and become ambassadors for Rustic Pathways. We are currently seeking motivated, passionate and inspiring young people to assist us in the growth and development of the Rustic community in Australia. If you’re interested in joining Rustic Life Crew, please email

This month’s blog is written by Elissa Veitch, who is a student at St Columba Anglican School, in Port Macquarie, NSW. Elissa travelled to The Fiji Islands with Rustic Pathways in 2016 and had an amazing time. She is now part of the Rustic Life Crew and was invited to join us at the National Young Leaders event in Sydney where she had the opportunity to attend inspirational talks from leaders around the world. She also helped us get the word on the street about Rustic Pathways!

Elissa has shared her story of the day… Get ready to be inspired…

From Elissa Veitch:
Imagine a world with no hunger, no poverty and peace throughout.
What about defeating inequality so that everyone has opportunities made available to them and they have the capacity to explore and take advantage of them?
Imagine this perfect world filled with our big ideas and you having a chance to make a change and be a leader in making the world a better place.

Every year Halogen Australia provides the opportunity for student leaders of schools and other organisations to explore their ideas and encourage change in their school, state, country and even the wider world.

This year in Sydney I had the privilege of attending the ‘National Young Leaders Day’ offered by Halogen, in support of Rustic Pathways.

At the event, I was given access to inspiring speakers and a bunch of kind hearted students wanting to make a change for the better.

We spent the day listening to each speaker’s words of wisdom, learning from their experiences.

The words that left me most encouraged were from Andrew Scipione, Ex- Commissioner of the NSW police force. He said: “It doesn’t matter how big the step is, it is a step and that’s all that matters.”

Those words stuck to me, because they really opened my mind, leaving me with a new perspective.

The inspiration I have from that is: If you have an idea for a change you want to make, all the small steps add up, so don’t stop, you are going somewhere. If you have the passion, work with it, there is no harm in trying.

Having had the privilege of helping Rustic at the event’s expo ignited my passion for change. Talking to other teenagers just like me, hearing their aspirations, their passions and their possible future career choices gave me a massive boost. I was able to share my experiences and gain positive feedback from the other individuals I met, pushing me in a positive direction to strive for goals in life.

In the end this experience meant I was able to gain connection with awesome people and a wider range of creativity when thinking of steps to move closer to my goals.

The day was incredible and I could not recommend it enough. It created a space where teens were able to express their ideas, share them with one another and offer support in an encouraging way. It allowed us to open our minds as young people who want to make the world a better place.

Even if you don’t have a badge or may not be recognised that doesn’t make you any less of a leader, reach out for opportunities. Events like this are very beneficial. They allow you to express your ideas and create ways to chase those big dreams. Don’t stop striving to make the change you want to see.

Keep doing you,

Elissa Veitch