Sym to share secrets to overcoming obesity

STG logo (purple&pink)Australians are continuing to get fatter with the percentage of overweight and obese people increasing from 38% in 1990 to 53% in 2005.
That’s a huge increase and with 68% of men and 55% of women now overweight or obese Annette Sym is more passionate than ever to help people lose weight and improve their health.
With more than half Australia’s population now overweight or obese, low-fat cookbook icon Annette Sym is continuing to help people fight the battle of the bulge with an exclusive one-day Weight Loss and Wellbeing Workshop in August.
Having just returned from the ‘fattest’ nation on earth – the US – the best selling author of the Symply Too Good To Be True series of low-fat cookbooks, Annette is even more dedicated to ensuring that Australia, the second ‘fattest’ nation does not win that particular race.
Annette, who has already helped thousands of Australians to lead healthier lives, will spend a day with workshop participants sharing her weight loss secrets.
“While launching my first US book this year I have done a lot of travelling so I am really excited to be home for a few months and to be presenting this workshop,” Annette said.
The Symply Too Good To Be True Weight Loss and Wellbeing Workshop is an opportunity to discover how to turn frumpy into fabulous, just as Annette did more than 17 years ago, losing 35 kilos.
“Losing my weight really turned my life around because then people encouraged me to write my cookbooks and now I really love the fact that I am helping thousands of people become healthier here and now in the US as well,” Annette said.
Having maintained her healthy weight range for over 17 years, Annette has also built a multi-million business.
“I turned my greatest weakness – food – into my greatest strength and I want to help other people do the same.
“It is a wonderful feeling to have a positive impact on people’s lives and I feel blessed to be able to share what I have learnt with others, that are struggling with their own weight,” Annette said.
Annette said that it only takes one-day to make the decision to change your old habits and to gain invaluable tools to make new habits for life.
What to expect at the Weight Loss and Wellbeing Workshop:
•    Be taught by Annette Sym on how to prepare an easy 3-course meal that contains less than 11g of fat and learn her invaluable cooking tips.
•    Find out the 4 things you need to know about fighting weight.
•    Gain helpful tips on how to fight your habits and regain control over your life.
•    Become an expert on how much fat & calories to have each day.
•    Learn the secret to making exercise fit into your busy life.
•    Motivational tips on staying on track during your weight loss journey.
The workshop will be at Alexandra Park Conference Centre on the Sunshine Coast on August 2nd and costs just $95 (incl. GST) and includes morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea & workbook.
“I am really excited to be running another workshop on the Sunshine Coast and to be able to share the knowledge that I have gained during my journey over the last few years; particularly my experiences overseas,” Annette said.
The Symply Too Good To Be True workshop will provide the motivation and drive to regain your life, and provide the tools to reach your goals.
For more information about any of Annette’s books or to make workshop bookings, call 07 5445 1250 or visit

Annual Breakfast honours Bloomhill volunteers

Colour LogoBloomhill Cancer Help will acknowledge more than 400 volunteers for their commitment and support of the Sunshine Coast based charity, through a Volunteers Breakfast at the Buderim Centre on June 27.
The annual breakfast will acknowledge those who generously offer their time to support the Centre, by presenting the 28 expected attendees with certificates to recognise their assistance to those living with cancer and their families.

Alex Bert, Volunteer Coordinator said that the Volunteer Breakfast was only a small way of thanking the many volunteers, some who have been with Bloomhill for years and even since its foundation in 1997.

“The volunteers are a vital part of Bloomhill’s work within the community and we couldn’t do what we do without them,” Alex said.

The gourmet breakfast will begin at 8:00am on Saturday the 27th of June at the Buderim Centre and will be followed by a presentation of certificates.

Alex said that certificates would be presented to volunteers of 5 and ten years service, during a special ceremony conducted by Bloomhill President, Geoff Morton AM and Bloomhill Vice-President, Jenny Carroll.

The recipients of certificates for 5 years of service include: Audrey Balley, Pam Buchanan, Cora George, Ruth Buchanan, Beryl Bugenhagen, Rosemary Clark, Anne Clemens, Ellen Copenech, Marlene Ferguson, Judith Laws, Heather Michelson, Barbara Turner, Ethel Weston, Shirley Dalley, Val Porter, Ann Thornton, Carole Williams, Jennifer Fisher, Rob Matchett, Lynn Menzies, Lorraine Quinn, Maurice Rowson, Elaine Thompson, Christine Winn and Bill Van Motman.

The recipients of certificates for ten years of service include: Maureen Clark,Margaret Jones,Marian Silver
Bloomhill President, Geoff Morton AM said that he was extremely grateful to the hundreds of volunteers and said already in 2009, volunteers had contributed more than 30,000 and driven more than 52,000km.

In 2008 the total volunteer hours completed was 41,400 or 863 per week, covering more than 70,000km.
Raelene Boyle, a long-term supporter and Bloomhill patron, offered her thanks to everybody that has supported and offered their time to Bloomhill Cancer Help over the years.

Bloomhill would like to acknowledge the donators, who are making the Volunteer Breakfast possible. Donations have come from: Garry Crick Auto Group; Suncoast Foods;  Mick’s Meat Barn, Warana; Erbachers Fruit & Vegies, Diddillibah; Suncoast Flowers, Kawana; Party People, Maroochydore; Brumby’s Mountain Creek; Tree Houses Restaurant, Montville; Natural Food Store, Forrest Glen; and The Caf @ Coolum.

If you are interested in becoming a Bloomhill volunteer, please phone Alex at the Centre on 07 5445 5794
A special thank you to everyone who contributed to the success of the Volunteer Breakfast.

Bloomhill puts on a show for Christmas in July

Colour LogoLike a ray of warm winter sunshine, Bloomhill Cancer Help are putting on a 60s show for Christmas in July.

The special fundraising dinner at Headland Golf Club on Wednesday 15 July 2009 will include a Christmas buffet dinner and a great line up of entertainment.

Event organiser, Peter McAllister said it would be a great night.

“The line up includes performances by duet ‘Gary and Brian’ who play ballads and Bee Gees music, comedy duo ‘The Drama Elves’, sixties band ‘Pete and the Cruisers’ and ‘Elvis’,” Mr McAllister said.

“Everything will be decked out in true Christmas tradition and the buffet will feature all the favourite Christmas fare so it will be a great opportunity for friends to get together for a great winter Christmas experience,” he said.

Mr McAllister who moved to the Sunshine Coast a few years ago said he organised the fundraiser because he saw the importance of the work Bloomhill did for the Sunshine Coast community.

“The support they give to people with cancer and their families on the Sunshine Coast is vital and I thought organising a great night out for people would be a way we could all support this very worthy cause,” he said.

Tickets to the Christmas in July 60s Party, from 7pm on Wednesday 15 July, are $45 per person and available from Bloomhill Cancer Help, 58 Ballinger Road, Buderim or by phoning 5445 5794. Bookings are essential and must be received by 10 July.

Innovative online training now available for apprentices

IClogo1CMYKThe Innovation Centre has welcomed another new entrepreneurial company focusing on digital technology to its growing hub of innovative businesses. eLearning Australia are the latest company to join the University of the Sunshine Coast’s Innovation Centre and are making an impact using online platforms to make learning in the workplace more efficient and effective.

Prior to August 2008, Graham Rodgers, founder and Managing Director of eLearning Australia worked as a Human Resource Manager for a large electrical contracting business on the Sunshine Coast where he developed a passion for online learning. In this role he implemented a strategic plan of delivering theoretical training to apprentices through online methods.

Graham’s employer utilised this method, which essentially eliminated classroom delivery of the training and employed the world wide web. As a result, they were awarded the ‘Employer of the Year’ in the Australian Training Awards in 2007.

The online training methods provide mutual benefits for the employer and the apprentice, such as flexibility and time arrangements.

After the successful implementation of the online training systems within the company, other businesses showed significant interest in applying the training to their workplaces. As a result the product needed further adaptation, and hence, eLeaning Australia was launched by Graham and his wife Melody.

Graham’s previous company are now one of the key employers utilising the services of eLearning Australia.

eLearning Australia currently provides training for people completing electrical and telecommunications apprenticeships. Mr Rodgers commented, ‘we are currently in discussions with several industries regarding training for other areas and it is likely that the next significant area we will undertake will be an allied trade’.

“We also deliver company specific training packages such as staff induction and occupational health and safety courses” he continued, ‘which brings huge benefits to the company by having consistent information given to all staff and the ease of updating when necessary’.

eLearning Australia is driven by Graham’s background as an electrician, which enabled him to become a trainer in his field, wife Melody’s Science degree which assists with research for courses and daughter Talia’s degree in Learning Management.

The team now consists of six staff, incorporating significant growth since beginning in August 2008, including one Information and Communication Technology graduate from the University of the Sunshine Coast.

The Innovation Centre Sunshine Coast provides attractive office space packages and is currently home to around 30 businesses within the Digital, Clean-Technology and Creative sectors.

‘We chose to locate our business from the Innovation Centre because of the vast variety of innovative companies based here’ Mr Rodgers said.

‘It allows us to network with other companies and work in an environment that is conductive to forward thinking, which keeps us on our toes’ he continued.

Innovation Centre CEO, Colin Graham said, ‘eLearning Australia are another great company taking traditional businesses into the future of online technology and allowing them to compete in an increasingly competitive business world’.

For more information on eLearning Australia visit or for more information on the Innovation Centre visit, phone +61 7 5450 2600 or email

Smiling For Smiddy

From 5-12 September 2009, 50 cyclists and support crew will tackle a gruelling 1600 kilometre cycle through Queensland in only eight days. It’s our way to raise funds for cancer research and remember our mate Adam Smiddy who lost his life to melanoma.

More than 100,000 Australians are diagnosed with cancer each year and too many good lives are lost to this devastating disease. We are united by a passion to make a difference.

I invite you to join the fight against cancer. Support our team as they tackle one of Australia’s most demanding endurance events knowing your donation goes directly towards world-class research which will one day save lives.

This video was created from footage shot in 2008 and provided to Reflected Image. We scripted and edited a fifteen minute “mini documentary” which was presented and voiced by Duncan Armstrong. The video will be used to promote the Smiling For Smiddy charity ride and to encourage donations at various events as well as being streamed on their site

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Strong Arm Strap

The Strong Arm Strap is an innovative yet simple device that helps prevent injury for transport workers opening and closing tautliner curtains. Produced for the clients website


RIPR among first in Australia to have new Panasonic HD camera


Reflected Image PRoductions are one of the first owners in Australia of Panasonics new full 1920 x 1080 progressive scan HD camera. Capable of shooting in the highest quality AVC intra format which is full 1920 x 1080 progressive it ensures we are capable of acquirung the highest quality images suitable for todays high resolution displays.

Movie goers raise much-needed funds for Coast cancer charity

Bloomhill Angels and Demons Movie night team, Chloe, James, Gigi, Jacinta & MichelleGuests at Wednesday night’s ‘Angels & Demons’ premiere event raised much-needed funds for local charity, Bloomhill Cancer Help.

The event which started at the Pig’N’Whistle with drinks and nibbles and finished with the premiere screening of ‘Angels & Demons’, attracted more than 130 Sunshine Coast movie goers and raised more than $2, 900 for the charity.

Mentored by Michelle Smytheman from Reflected Image PRoductions, four University of the Sunshine Coast PR students, Chloe Sollom, Eugiena Pratley, Jacinta Krause and James Caffery, started planning the event in early March as part of a ‘Production Workshop’ offered by the university which allows PR students to apply their skills in a real-life situation.

‘Previous USC PR students have been offered great jobs in the industry largely because of their Production Workshop and Internship experience’, said USC lecturer, Dr Amalia Matheson.

‘We actively involve industry professionals in our teaching to make sure the degree is relevant and integrated with both business and the broader community’.

‘This approach which underpins our new public relations degrees, has resulted in a 66 per cent increase in enrolments in the program’.

‘These industry elements set the Public Relations degree apart from others so our graduates have recent experience working on high-profile projects. It gives them an edge with employers.’

It is the first year that Bloomhill have partnered with USC students through the Production Workshop program.

Bloomhill president, Geoff Morton, is encouraged by the group’s progress and feels this mutually beneficial partnership for both Bloomhill and students is one that could continue into the future.

‘The students get to put their newly-found PR skills to practice while raising much needed funds for Bloomhill so it really is a win-win situation’, he said.

‘These students planned this event with no budget so to have raised $2, 900 for Bloomhill is a great achievement.’

One of the event organisers and USC PR student, Chloe Sollom has thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

‘It has definitely been an invaluable learning experience and I feel really fortunate to have been involved in planning an event that is going to benefit such a worthy cause’.

‘Helping to plan this event has made me feel more confidant about my PR capabilities and much more self-assured about entering the workforce.’

All funds raised from the event will go directly to Bloomhill Cancer Help so they can continue to provide their many invaluable care and support services to local people with cancer, their carers and family members.

Matching your product with potential customers is vital for new businesses

IClogo1CMYKJust thinking you have a great product or service is not enough when it comes to setting up your own business, according to the experts at the Innovation Centre Sunshine Coast.

According to Innovation Centre entrepreneur-in-residence Nigel Hall ensuring you have a potential market might seem obvious but for many business founders failing to research this aspect of their business results in early failure.

Nigel will be one of five experienced and successful Sunshine Coast entrepreneurs presenting at the Innovation Centre’s one day intensive Start It Up! program for people wanting to launch their own business.

“Researching your product and potential customers is a vital step in business planning,” Nigel said.

Nigel said once business founders had identified and matched their personal goals with specific business
ones, it was important for them to ensure they would be fulfilling a market need.

“It’s all very well to have a great idea and think you know what people want but you need to do some
research to ensure what you think about your target demographic is right.
“Without a clear idea of who your potential clients are and their habits you could completely miss their needs.

“Having the support of family and friends is great but business people really need to get some good honest
and unbiased feedback and some hard facts about who their target demographic is,” he said.

“To do this you need to identify what benefits your potential clients receive from using your product or service
and use that to create an appealing pitch around the product and value proposition you can market. Most
people do no buy on technical features, they buy on utility. Its this message of utility you need to find within
your product description to attract clients.”

The one-day program will also include presentations by Sixty Second Parent CEO and founder of the internationally successful automated software development company Typefi Systems, Steve Huff, Innovation Centre CEO Colin Graham and founder and author of the ENACT suite of business programs, Trevor Holmes.  There will also be an Open Forum with Steve Huff, Trevor Holmes and pioneer of the start-up Proscribe Medical Communications Dr Karen Woolley.

The intensive and practical one-day Start It Up! Program, on Friday 5 June, will cost $295+GST per participant.  In addition to the one-day program, the cost includes a complimentary 1-hour Start It Up! Consultation with Innovation Centre entrepreneur-in-residence Nigel Hall (valued at $250), a complimentary initial consultation with either Hemming + Hart or Redchip Lawyers to assist you in setting up your business legals (valued at $200) and a 20-page Start It Up! Booklet – 10 Action Steps to Realising Your Entrepreneurial Ambitions (Valued at $49.00).

Numbers are limited so to book or for more information call 07 5450 2600 or visit

Mooloolaba Triathlon raises thousands for cancer services

Colour LogoWhile it was a wet weekend, there was strong support from Mooloolaba Triathlon Festival organisers USM Events, competitors and the crowd for the nominated charity Bloomhill Cancer Help.

In addition to the fantastic race events throughout the weekend of events from 27 to 29 March, there were several fundraisers for Bloomhill, with competitors also encouraged to donate to the worthy Sunshine Coast charity.
The Sunshine Coast organisation that assists people living with cancer, is very grateful to USM Events for supporting the work they do which includes offering practical as well as emotional support for people with cancer and their loved ones, including counselling, support groups, complementary therapies and transport.
Bloomhill, which relies on the generosity of the public and funds generated by its seven Op Shops, offers a “safe haven” for people with cancer and their families.  We focus on survival and quality of life and walk with our clients from the day of diagnosis, through treatment and on to the survival stage or for some the final stage of grief and loss.
“The public has shown amazing support for us over the 11 years since Bloomhill was created which has helped us to build an organisation that supports and assists over 700 clients,” Bloomhill Committee Member and Triathlon competitor, Brett Graham said.

“And it was great to see that support extend to the Mooloolaba Triathlon Festival,” he said.

Brett said not only were Bloomhill volunteers collecting donations and selling raffle tickets throughout the weekend, people also supported the organisation at the Bloomhill Brekky BBQ at The Courier-Mail Superkidz event.

“Bloomhill is able to provide services because of the generosity of the public so we would like to thank USM Events for their strong support and for the opportunity to raise funds and awareness at the Mooloolaba Triathlon Festival,” he said.

He said everyone at Bloomhill was very excited about the thousands raised and were looking to being presented with the funds on Tuesday.

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