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Sunny Liu, assisting local and international communities in Darwin



In this week’s episode, Geoff is talking to Sunny Liu who was a Winner in the 2021 7NEWS Young Achiever Awards for Victoria.

Sunny Liu passionately serves the local and international communities in Darwin. Sunny is the Vice-Chair of Kindness Shake Inc., a charity that has handed out over 6,000 free meals, assisted 800 individuals and raised more than $200,000 in grants and donations. An international student, she is also a committee member of the Multicultural Council NT and 2022 Youth Advisory Group at Headspace Darwin.



Want to connect with Sunny? – she’s active on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/sunny-liu-ba023b123/

OR follow Kindness shake on fb: https://www.facebook.com/KindnessShakeNT/ and on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kindnessshake/?hl=en

The Kindness shake website is: https://kindness-shake.com.au/


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[00:00:05] Annette

Welcome to the inspirational  Australians podcast  with a  chat to  people, making a difference in their communities and in the lives of others.  And  here is your host for today. Geoff Griffin.

[00:00:21] Geoff

Welcome to the inspirational Australians podcast stories of inspiring achievements  and community contribution. Every week we will celebrate an award program category,  winner or finalists. We hope you’ll be inspired and encouraged to know that Australia is in good hands,  together with our corporate partners and not for profit partners, Awards,  Australia. Showcase ordinary people from right across Australia are doing  extraordinary things. If you enjoy hearing the stories of our inspirational Australians,  please subscribe. Write us and review us. We really appreciate it.

[00:01:12] Geoff

I’m delighted to be chatting with this week’s podcast guest. She’s  a community champion who gives her time so freely across multiple community causes.  Sunny Lui epitomizes the values of the Northern territory, young achiever Awards. Her main goal in life is to make  a difference for others. For a significant contribution to many causes,  Sunny nominated for the 2022 Northern Territory Young Achiever  Awards and was chosen by the judges as a finalist in a Somerville Community Service Award. Sunny  Sunny it is such an honor to have you on the podcast. Welcome.

[00:01:50] Sunny

Thank you. Thank you. Geoff

[00:01:52] Geoff

You’re always smiling is I think you’re  a ray of sunshine for everybody. You have that personality and that Smile that  warms people no matter how they feel. So thank you for that Sunny,  you’ve done so much already in your life. I want to unpack some of that starting with your study. Now,  why did you choose Australia to come to study and how long have you been in the territory now?

[00:02:21] Sunny

Sure, thanks for having me on the show. It’s  a great honor to speak to you and share my experience with other young people. So I  came to Australia at the age of almost eighteen to study my bachelor’s degree at  Monash University in Melbourne. That was back in twenty fourteen. So it’s been  a bit over eight years now. And now fast forward to five years later I moved to  Darwin from Melbourne. It was  a pretty bold move at the time because I’d never been in Darwin before. I didn’t  know anyone in Darwin or in the nt at all,  but it’s always this almost mythical place in Australia, the Australian outback,  where people don’t tend to know much about. And I was obviously driven by my  curiosity and also the prospects of exploring more of Australia,  the country that I’d been living in for years at the time. So I just packed up my  stuff and moved up north with my dog Molly. And yeah, it’s been  a great journey so far. I’ve been living here for three years. And during this time  I completed my master of teaching degree at Charles Darwin University here in  Darwin. And I was teaching in secondary schools for  a little while. And now I’m working for Charles Darwin University as  a media and communications officer doing a lot of media stuff for the University, which I really enjoy doing.

[00:03:45] Geoff

Well, I can say that’s well suited to your personality and to your skills as well.  And  Charles Darwin, University is a sponsor of the Awards, as you know,  and we’re very proud to have them involved in the program. So it must be,  must have been very daunting to have moved to  a new country to study as it would be for anybody. How did you find things in  Australia and Melbourne in particular? And what were some of the hurdles that you had to overcome?  And did people make you feel welcome when you arrived?

[00:04:20] Sunny

Yeah, I would say there were two brand new journeys of part of my life as an international  student in Australia. The first one was when I came here for the very first time to  study a bachelor’s degree at Monash Uni. I was just turning eighteen at the time,  very young and very excited about the whole future ahead. I was just naturally  a little adventurer at heart. I wasn’t sad to leave my family. I was just happy to  be in Australia to have that experience of a lifetime. And during that time, as  a very young person studying at University living with  a homestay and then later on with friends, I know it’s just been  a very fun journey and exploring a lot of new things, learning about a new culture,  making friends from different national backgrounds and nationalities and cultures.  It’s just, everything’s new, I just try to take it all in as a young person,  and it’s been very rewarding. I think this experience has definitely shaped who I  am so far. And then the second part of this journey as an international student  would be my move from Melbourne to Darwin. Darwin and Melbourne are very,  very different places even though they are in the same country. So different climates, opposite temperatures, and also the,  the communities can be quite different as well. So Darwin is smaller definitely in size,  but people tend to be from different parts of the world or different parts of Australia.  And there is a very big Aboriginal community. Up here as well,  so that’s shaped the culture and the landscape of Darwin.  And it’s been very,  very interesting for me having always been living in big cities before, to live in a small,  smaller regional place. And I found that overall I’ve been really embraced by the  local community here. Everyone has been so welcoming, so friendly,  to have me to be part of their community. And over the three years I think I have found  a second family in Darwin. And now three years on I think it’s about time for me to  start again on a new journey. So that’s why I recently made the decision to move back to Melbourne  for my own career development and also another chapter in my life.

[00:06:39] Geoff

Well that all sounds very exciting too,  and we wish you every success in your return to Melbourne. How did you find  Melbourne compared to Darwin in terms of people being friendly, warm and engaging?

[00:06:51] Sunny

I think melburnians are very cultured and they’re very knowledgeable about other  places in the world. I think people tend to be very well travelled. So when I say I  come from China, I quite often I find that people already know  a lot about China and the Chinese culture. So it’s no surprise to them, you know,  the way that we communicate or some of the cultural traditions or even the food.  They are very accustomed to Chinese food over there because there’s already  a very big Chinese community well established in Melbourne. So there wasn’t much of  a cultural shock to me to move directly from China to Melbourne.  And people are  always very open minded. They want to learn more about different cultures. Even  languages. So many people Australian students study Mandarin Chinese as their  second language. And I can even communicate with some of them just in Chinese is  just incredible to see that open mindedness and that that level of knowledge about  the Chinese culture and other nationalities. So I really appreciate that when I was  living there and studying as well. And then in Darwin, there is also  a long history of Chinese immigration in Darwin. So we have some older Chinese immigrants, and we also have  a new wave of Chinese students and young skilled workers. So it’s always wherever I go, I feel there’s always  a little piece of home in that place.

[00:08:19] Geoff

Are your family still in China or have I moved to Australia to be with you?

[00:08:26] Sunny

Both of my parents are still in China in our hometown of jonquil,  in central China. And I do have a sister like closest family friend,  but she’s my sister. She lives in permanently. So yeah,  our family is kind of all around the world. We have family friends in North America  or Europe. So we, our family is very international, I would say,  where we encourage people to go out and explore.

[00:08:54] Geoff

Yeah, well that’s the beauty of the world these days, isn’t it?  ? You can be anywhere in the world and it’s not too far to get back to your roots or  to see mum and dad. Except for the last few years during covid made it much more  complicated.  And you certainly, you know, your heart goes out to any and everyone who has family overseas,  that they have not been able to say for some time. So now you’re not only  integrated into community view beautifully, but you so personally committed to make a difference for others,  which you certainly done over the past few years in the Northern territory. You’ve been  a member of the multicultural Council in Turkey. How did you get involved and what  is the council’s problem and what has been your involvement?

[00:09:44] Sunny

Yeah, so the multicultural Council of the Northern territory is the territory wide peak  body for multiculturalism. Actively advocating for and representing multicultural communities in the entire Northern territory. So it’s  a pretty big organisation has been around for quite a few years. I officially became a committee member of N.S.A.  in the end of twenty twenty. So that was two years ago and I was part of  it because I have always been out and about and participating in and engaging in  all these multicultural festivals and events and activities. And I got to learn  more about multicultural Council and about what they do. So I decided to be part of  the community where I can play a more active role and have more of  a say of providing support for new immigrants, or people of refugee backgrounds,  the humanitarian entrants in Australia. And also are engaging more with people from  different cultures such as not just Chinese, but most are Indian. There’s a big Indian community here in the n.t..  There’s also a lot of people from African communities and also from European community since  being so interesting to get to know more about them,  what they do and what they have done to build this whole territory. And also in  Darwin to how they have pretty much started this whole city by Chinese and Greek  immigrants. So just getting to know more about the cultural fabrics of that community has been a very,  very rewarding experience.

[00:11:31] Geoff

Fantastic. And I think that’s the key is just to get  involved and integrate as best you can.  And I know you’re active in trying to be  inclusive with people coming from whatever culture it might be,  which is really critical and important for people to have access to be able to go  to activities. Just meet with people. You know, we’re a big community, but same time,  we can be very isolated if we aren’t connected yet. You’re also  a youth advisory group member at Headspace. Can you tell us about Headspace and  what the youth advisory group are involved with?

[00:12:14] Sunny

Sure, so from this year I’ve been part of the youth advisory group of Headspace Darwin. Headspace is  a organisation that provides free mental health and wellbeing support and services  for young people aged up to twenty five years of age. I have always been very  passionate about mental health wellbeing and mental health issues among young people,  mainly because I see people’s experiences around me all the time. And I hear those  stories and I feel like there’s so much more that could be done to support their  mental wellbeing and their general psychological well-being and having studied  actually psychology at University for my undergraduate degree. I feel like I have  some more in-depth knowledge about some of the issues that people might be  experiencing. So when this opportunity came up to be part of Headspace Darwin,  I immediately just came on board because I thought it’s  a great way to share more about the services available for young people when they  are experiencing challenges in life to be able to know where to seek help and also  to know that they’re not alone was just really important because quite often young people could feel a bit of  a disconnect to the real world. And that’s exacerbated by the prevalence prevalence  of Social media and could be online bullying as well. And negativity,  in general as conveyed in the media, could add to  a lot of physical and mental stress for young people and for the past two years,  covid nineteen has been so stressful for everyone and Headspace is amazing because it’s very open. It welcomes,  all young people. Doesn’t matter if you are Australian or you are an international  student, you can all access the service at Headspace for free,  and it definitely supports people of all sexualities of all cultures as well. So I think it’s  a very inclusive space to be part of. And the group has been amazing. There are  people from sixteen to twenty five as part of the young advisory group of Headspace.  And we come together every fortnight to discuss issues that matter to young  people’s mental health and provide our own youth perspective to the services and operations of Headspace.  So they can gain  a more youth perspective and view of how their services are going for young people.  And it’s been very, very positive, so far

[00:14:53] Geoff

awesome, and such a great organization Headspace. We’re  a bronze sponsor of the Awards run around the country this year that connect and  the synergy between the Awards. And of course young people and Headspace is fantastic. And you’re right, there are  a lot of young people have significant things to deal with. It’s very,  very tough mentally. Have the expectations on young people as opposed to the  realities of what people are able to physically do. Sometimes mounting pressure.  So I think it’s fantastic that you’ve been involved and used your psychology skills and training to,  to good advantage there.  And young people certainly need support. You’ve also been  heavily involved in youth week. What was your role with that youth?

[00:15:45] Sunny

I was the twenty twenty one, one of the twenty,  twenty one u-20 youth week ambassadors. So as an end to youth week ambassador,  my role was to Actively engage with young people throughout the Northern  territory. During that April youth week in April school holidays. That’s  a week where this full of fun, engaging and informative, helpful activities,  and workshops and events for young people around the territory. And people can  attend all of these for free and be part of the community during this process. And  the theme of that year was it’s your future. So we really want to invite everyone,  every young person in the n.t.  to think about how they can take charge of their future and how they can shape the  future of the Northern territory in general.  Because youth engagement is definitely  very, very crucial to the future development of Northern territory because we have  a quite young population. And people’s involvement are so important  to how the territory can develop into the future. And the more young people that we  can engage with, the fewer there are, there could be less youth crime,  there could be less violence and there could be more positive engagement and more  positive impacts that we see. People going into further education. We see people  doing great work doing great job in their community. It doesn’t matter whether they  live in the metropolitan area or they live in remote communities. There are  activities throughout the Northern territory during this week,  and it’s not just limited to that week. It’s like a long term involvement,  a long term project to get young people on board. I was very proud to see that this  year in 2022 that the Northern territory youth week has also got more  young people on board with brand new anti youth week ambassadors from  a younger age group as well. To engage with people from that school age up until  they are the twenties. And it’s great,  fantastic to see so many people getting to know more about the talents and the  abilities of young people in the know what they can do,  what they are capable of doing. And people will have that more confidence in young  people to empower them to do more things for their future.

[00:18:21] Geoff

It was certainly great to see so many young people together at the Awards night earlier at minda beach  casino resort. And just to watch you all, everybody was really connected, warm and engaging,  proud and Encouraging of each other’s achievements and admiration. And they gave me  a lot of pride too, to be able to bring people into  a room like that to acknowledge and celebrate the great things that young people do and youth week, of course,  as the same time and objectives to bring people together. And as you’re alluding to  the great thing about youth week is it encourages them to stay together to keep doing things,  to keep participating and being involved and to grow. And it is always good to see  new young people involved in youth. But also working beyond that in roles that  encapsulate others so well done to you. As I said at the beginning of the chat,  you’re so heavily involved in community and doing things for young people. So  congratulations for that. You’re also in fact of course the vice chair and very  passionate about kindness sake. So what is kindness like and what are the main aims?

[00:19:47] Sunny

Definitely I can speak  a lot about kind of shaking. I can talk all day long because I am in fact one of  the founding members that has been with this organization from the very beginning. So kind of Sheikh is  a not for profit organization and charity that started in April twenty,  twenty, at the very beginning of the covid nineteen pandemic. And we started by  a group of us getting together. And this group is made of international students  and international alumni based and in the end,  we got together to talk about what we could do to for fellow international students who have been experiencing  a lot of financial difficulties and challenges in life during the pandemic.  As you  know, when we had the lockdowns shops, restaurants all closed,  things will put on hold. And many international students lost their jobs and lost  their financial income. And they were not eligible for any government welfare and  any government funding support. So as a result,  we came up with the idea to hand out free meals to international students  every single week ever since April twenty twenty. We started at Charles Darwin  University, handing out a one hundred to one hundred fee,  free meals every Friday to anyone who needed it. And we just wanted to make sure  that no one would go home at the end of the week,  feeling hungry or not being able to bring to the table. And over time,  over the months it just grew so,  so much and so fast. And we started having all levels of support from the local  government, from anti government, from the University, from community groups,  from restaurants and businesses that all came on board to support us either  financially or providing us with the meals and the ingredients to support those  international students. And over the years that we have evolved to provide different kinds of support to international students,  and that turned into networking opportunities, employability workshops, and social events to form that connection. And also of course,  the annual kindness festival, which is a massive major event in the n.t.  that showcases the diverse talent and multiculturalism in the nt from international  students who will bring them on stage to show the general community of who they are,  what they can do and what they have done for the nt,

[00:22:25] Geoff

when is the festival held, what time of the year

[00:22:28] Sunny

is held during the dry season. We just had the second kind of festival just  a few weeks ago in June at the waterfront. And we’re going to have it again next  year in June. Again. It’s going to be every year during the dry season at our waterfront,  and we’re so proud of what we can do for international

[00:22:48] Geoff

students. Absolutely brilliant, I love it. And I think what you’re doing with the condensate and through the  condensate is absolutely amazing. So you needed it so critical. And how many  free meals would you say you’ve given out over the period

[00:23:05] Sunny

throughout from April two thousand twenty to up until twenty twenty one. We have given out at least six  thousand free meals to international students and temporary residents who needed  those most. And over the time that we have assisted more than  a thousand people during the process and of course we as a nonprofit,  we also raise funding to support our operations and to help our target  international students. So during that time we have raised one hundred thousand in support in funding from different organizations.

[00:23:42] Geoff

Awesome, would you say they are your greatest achievements as an organization?

[00:23:48] Sunny

I think it’s also about putting international students in the spotlight. So we have received quite  a lot of attention and support from all walks of life from  all communities. And what people previously may not know about international  students. Now they get to know more about who our international students are, where they’re from, what they’re doing,  and also the value that they bring to Australia. And it’s tremendous to see that  the level of support that international students can have. Once they get  to, once more people get to know more about them, because previously, there may just be  a number to many people. They may just be one of the many international students  around universities, but they are, they can be your neighbor,  they can be your friend. They can be your co-worker, your colleagues,  and they can be seen everywhere. And everyone has an amazing story to tell.

[00:24:54] Geoff

Absolutely, and I think we’re starting to realize how much international students contribute to  the economy, but also to the job sector, where there are so many organizations struggling for workers. So our  international students have such a contribution to make across multifaceted,  including community size, the social fabric of our community. They bring a blend of culture. And you know,  it’s just quite fascinating and brilliant to see the different types,  even the different types of dress that people have. You know that I might dress  differently to someone else. We just,  the way we blend the way we meet together and learn is just fantastic. And we certainly,  I think over the past few years have missed having our international students fill our lives with joy for  a range of reasons. What do you think are the future plans and goals of the Sheikh?

[00:25:59] Sunny

We definitely want to make shape very sustainable. We want to make it a legacy,  an ongoing strong non-profit organization for everyone in the Northern territory.  So we have recently secured sustainability funding from the Northern territory  government for the next three years. That will make sure that we continue to do  what we do and expand more of our services over the next three years. At least. We  have also just signed a partnership agreement with Charles Darwin University to have ongoing partnership,  and that level of exchange from Charles Darwin University who has been  a big supporter of us since the beginning. And we also have a partnership agreement with melaleuca, Australia,  which is an organization that provides settlement services for refugees and  humanitarian entrants in Australia. And it’s been so many great partnerships and  collaborations with different organisations. And they will make sure that we continue going strong as an organisation,  and we are going to keep recruiting more international students to be part of this amazing project.

[00:27:09] Geoff

Sounds fantastic for the future. Congratulations on those successes. Now Sunny, I had the pleasure of meeting you  a number of times and having a chat and  a few of the young achiever award gala presentation dinners over the past few years  at the beautiful minda beach casino resort. It’s always impressed me that you have  a Smile on your face.  Smile to offer everyone in the room, the room lights up. When you’re there,  you’re always happy upbeat. And you’re always looking to engage with other  people because you’re very passionate. So I thank you for that firstly and your passion, I think, to make  a difference might be part of the reason that you were announced this as this  year’s young achiever Awards hall one hundred people’s choice winner. Congratulations. You received more votes than any other finalist?  ? Clearly your peers, friends and your supporters must feel that you are amazing,  and I can understand why so well done for that.

[00:28:19] Sunny

Thank you so much, Geoff. It’s  a great honor and then expect to win any of the categories and just become  a finalist. Becoming a finalist is already a great,  great honor to me because I attended the ninety yamashiro gala in twenty twenty one  to be there to support my friend, Ben Alfonso, who was actually the winner of that and to achieve  a category. So I was really proud of him and at the time I thought maybe one day I  could put myself in that out there and also be part of this. And the next year I  was on stage taking home that people’s choice award. And that was just so  unexpected. Just a pleasant surprise for me.

[00:29:05] Geoff

Yeah, to become a finalist in the Somerville community service award. Really is an outstanding  achievement. And it’s and must have been a real honor, as you say, to be selected.

[00:29:18] Sunny

Yes, it was great.  A great feeling and also everyone back home in China was really  rooting for me. I think they played  a very big part in getting me that people’s choice award. Good. My family. My  parents have been sharing it a lot. Encouraging everyone from family, from friends,  back home to vote for me and they have been doing that tirelessly probably every  day. And I really can’t thank them enough.

[00:29:45] Geoff

So we need to call it the International people’s choice award. Girl family,  we love our family. What are your memories of the Awards night?

[00:29:57] Sunny

I think just the synergy from the event because there were so many young people,  whether they were there to receive their award or to be there to be for their  friends and family. And it’s just a great feeling in general,  just see those friends and family hug each other to congratulate each other to have  their achievements recognized by the community. And there were people who are sponsors, who are business owners,  who are members of the general community who are there to witness these great  achievements by young people. And that was just great to see. And it’s

[00:30:32] Geoff

so inspiring, isn’t it to hear the stories of so many young people doing extraordinary things  across a multitude of industry activities.  It is such  a thrill to see people come together to share those those achievements and  celebrate with the people that they know well with the Awards launching again. Soon.  Would you encourage our listeners to nominate someone for the twenty two twenty three Awards?

[00:30:59] Sunny

Definitely, I think it shows your support for that young person or people you’re nominating and it’s  a great vote of confidence for young people. Many young people might be quite shy to nominate themselves,  or they may not even think of nominating at all because they don’t think that would  be good enough. Be up there. But actually they are. They’re doing amazing things  that may not be seen by many people. So I think will be  a great way to recognize what they’re doing. Sort of celebrate the unsung heroes of  our community. And those can be anyone around.

[00:31:34] Geoff

Yeah, one hundred percent. And if any of our listeners would like to nominate someone  head to Awards Australia dot com and to your state,  and you will find out more about the program. Certainly for the young achiever  Awards and the community achievement Awards are currently open in all states and territories, as well,  including in the Northern territory. So if you’re in the territory, check out the territory page. Otherwise,  any of the page at all for the Awards around the country, they’re all state based. So have  a look and get your nomination in for someone that you know because you will make  a difference. Or if you’re interested in a sponsored partnership opportunity,  if you like to be part of the team that recognises people just like Sally,  then send me an email at Geoff F. Geoff at Awards Australia dot com, so that we can have  a chat about the opportunities available. There are financial  contributions of low to high that you can get involved in if you want to make  a difference in recognising people like Sally, who is very worthwhile recognising. There are so many doing really Good Stuff,  Sally, on a different note. What’s something that we might not know about you?

[00:32:56] Sunny

This is the most difficult question because I feel like I’m quite predictable. Maybe I’m as you know,  quite outgoing. So I love to try out different things, make friends with different people, and I love travelling,  of course and adventuring. So I’m a lover of maybe extreme activities, high adrenaline activities, soccer, I love going, bungee,  jumping or skydiving. I have a certificate in free diving,  so that just means holding your breath and dive and dive. So I love all things to  do with the Ocean and the water, the sky. So yeah, sky’s the limit. I guess.

[00:33:37] Geoff

Have you been one of those shark tank things?

[00:33:41] Sunny

No, really, any in the Indian Ocean. And we have a crocodile cove, so you can go in like  a giant fish tank and the crocodiles swimming around you. But I haven’t really got  around to it. I did go to a jumping crocodile cruise,  so you kind of hold the meat out of the boat and the crocodiles come up and just  eat the meat off the boat, which is they do that? Yeah,  yeah. They do that giant crocodiles that just open their mouth like almost one hundred  eighty degrees and the meat of the steak. So yeah,  it’s quite exciting to definitely be croc wise as well.  Don’t think they’re your friend

[00:34:18] Geoff

having to fire up the boat when it’s, you

[00:34:21] Sunny

know, don’t stick your arms out.

[00:34:24] Geoff

So you are a bit of a, an adrenaline junkie.

[00:34:28] Sunny

Yes, I am for

[00:34:30] Geoff

sure. Well, there you go. You know that, that’s interesting. Well,  you wouldn’t in winter like in Melbourne where I’ve boots in Darwin,  you wouldn’t have a need for that, but you might have to buy a pair for when you move. Well,

[00:34:44] Sunny

for sure. Yeah.

[00:34:47] Geoff

I believe you recently received your Australian permanent residency.

[00:34:53] Sunny

That’s right. It’s so exciting something I’ve been striving to  get ever since I’ve been in Australia. So it’s been eight years in the waiting. And  then finally got it in May this year so. So exciting. Everyone was really happy for  me as well. It just means there’s  a sense of security that you are in this country. You can finally finally  officially call this country your home and you’re here to stay. And yeah,  it’s just great to be part of the official residence of Australia. Yeah,

[00:35:28] Geoff

,  congratulations. Well, I can certainly say that Australia is so much the better place to have you as one  officially, one of our own. You have been for many years, but officially congratulations. That’s awesome.

[00:35:44] Sunny

Thank you Geoff.

[00:35:46] Geoff

So what are the driving passions that make Sunny tick?

[00:35:52] Sunny

I have quite diverse interests, I would say and passions as well. Over the years I have definitely discovered  through my experience with the countryside, with other volunteering opportunities like with the Headspace with youth week. I  think I’ve definitely discovered my strong passion for serving the community that I  live in and helping people I think helping others is something that’s great for others,  but also great for your own mental wellbeing. So your own sense of achievement,  you feel safer, fulfilled and so rewarded in a way that cannot be measured with any financial contribution,  financial income. That’s something that I think will go a long way in your personal journey. And it’s just  a great feeling to help someone out or give someone the assistance they need.  It can be something very small, like giving them a free meal,  or it can be something big. And regardless of what you do, it will create  a positive impact for them and yourself. And

[00:37:01] Geoff

well, you are very inspirational, certainly I have to say. But there must get times when it all gets  a little bit too much for you, or you feeling  a bit low. What do you do to bounce back and recharge yourself?

[00:37:16] Sunny

Yeah, I think it’s very important to take the time to check in on yourself and take some  time off and set your boundaries as well to make sure that your personal life is  not invited by all the other commitments you may have agreed to. So for me,  I find that taking some time for myself, watching a favorite movie,  listening to some really great music, and I have a dog. As I mentioned, Molly, she’s  a great companion and great emotional support for me throughout the years and spending  time with my dog taking her out to the beach for  a run. It’s just great to have that little bit break.

[00:37:58] Geoff

And what type of dog is Molly?

[00:38:00] Sunny

Molly is a small king Charles cavalier. She is seven years old and she’s little angel.

[00:38:06] Geoff

Oh, so cute. And what kind of a brown and white

[00:38:12] Sunny

Molly is the Tri colors and mostly black and white. A bit of brown.  Yeah, I could

[00:38:17] Geoff

call the very cute dogs and I think pets are  a really important part about therapy for Self. Self charging too. I  yes. Yeah. And I think talking to someone is really critical, whether it be  a dog or whether it be to someone just to catch up for  a coffee and just to be in people’s company and be able to listen to other people  to talk about what’s on your mind sometimes to say to someone  what is troubling you is really critical. So it’s really important and thank you  for sharing how you recharge to because it is important  a we’re different meal might do that in a different way,  but it is really important to do so what’s on the horizon for Sunny coming up

[00:39:10] Sunny

my next big move which is  a big change for me is moving from Darwin back to Melbourne, and I’ll be starting  a new job in the communications space in the public sector. So be something new,  a new adventure for me to go on. And also just readjusting to life and in Melbourne,  the cold weather and more different dynamics as well. But I look forward to really  explore different community service opportunities when I go to Melbourne and maybe  get involved in different organisations and still seek ways to support international students because this  a huge number of international students in Melbourne. And I think many of them  could benefit from an organisation similar to kind of Asia. So definitely be exploring more opportunities down there too.

[00:40:03] Geoff

Fantastic. Well, do you have any words of wisdom and encouragement for our listeners?

[00:40:10] Sunny

Some things that I have benefited a lot over the years for me is to think that whenever  there’s opportunity go for us, don’t hesitate too much because the more you think of it,  the opportunity might slip away. So definitely grab that opportunity as soon as you  can. So for me, moving from Melbourne to Darwin was  a great opportunity. And I think I made that decision within a matter of two weeks. And that was  a big move to move all the way across the country,  but then never really regretted it and got so much during the three years in the  territory. And again, similar moving from Darwin to Melbourne. Back again,  is another quick decision which I think could be a bit daunting,  but it’s definitely going to be good for my career development.  And my life in  general are definitely take on those opportunities even if they scare you. That  just means it’s going to be a great challenge, it’s going to be a very rewarding experience.

[00:41:16] Geoff

And it will no doubt be rewarding for all those that  you connect with as well. Have the opportunity and the privilege to come into  connection with you and to partner with you in community activities and in your  employment. So I wish you all the very success in your journey to Melbourne and within Melbourne.  So anyway,  can our listeners connect with you online or get involved with kindness for example?

[00:41:44] Sunny

For sure. So to connect with me,  I’m pretty active. I linked in. So just search Sunny Liu is you all linked in?  You should be able to find me with my Photo in there and for kind of shake. We are  on all sorts of Social media platforms. We’re on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn as well. We have  a website that tells you more about what we do. So just such kind of shake on all  social media platforms or Google the keyword shake down,  and then you should be able to find out more and it’ll be great to connect with everyone.

[00:42:20] Geoff

Well, certainly we are so pleased and privileged that you chose Australia to come and  study way back when you were eighteen. It’s such  a privilege to have you here for all that you’ve done. We thank you and it’s been  an absolute pleasure to have you on the podcast. You are an inspiration and  a powerhouse. Thank you so much for sharing some of your story with us today.

[00:42:46] Sunny

Thank you so much, Geoff. It’s been great talking to you.

[00:42:49] Geoff

Thank you.  As always, and I hope everybody listening has enjoyed hearing Sunny’s story too. Well until  next week. Please be kind and remember that together we make a difference.

[00:43:01] Geoff

I hope you enjoyed today’s interview as much as I had. We would love  you to subscribe to our podcast that you won’t miss an episode. Join us each week  as we talk with ordinary Australians shaping extraordinary things. Did you know  that Awards Australia is a family owned business that proudly makes  a difference in the lives of those that make a difference for others? And we thank our corporate not for  profit partners for making our programs possible. Do you know someone that’s making a difference? Well, maybe your business might like to sponsor an award. Contact us throughout Instagram page, inspirational dot Australians, or head to our website. Awards Australia dot com. Would be great if you could share the site with your network. Because who doesn’t like a good news story, please write and review us. We would really love to hear your thoughts until next week. Stay safe. And remember together we make a difference.