Fiona Rossiter, Permaculture
“I've got a real passion for permaculture, because I think permaculture is going to save the world,” says Fiona Rossiter, registered nurse, café owner, former Orange City Councillor, children’s author and mother of eight.
“I know that is a big call, but I do dream big! The future is looking quite bleak because we live in such a throwaway world and the Earth won’t be able to cope with it. We need to regenerate the Earth; we need to care for it!
And that, says Fiona, is where permaculture comes in. Permaculture is essentially a set of design principals for creating a more sustainable way of life.
For Fiona, her introduction to permaculture came about when she was creating her own backyard garden to feed her family.
“In the garden we built, we put lots of food and vegetables, because it was a much cheaper way to feed the children and it was healthy and the kids were involved in it,” says Fiona,
“Then we had an open day and let people come through our place and one person said it was such a great permaculture garden and I didn’t know what that was. I looked it up and realised it was permaculture that we were doing!”
From then on, Fiona has been hooked. She sought out courses and is now a qualified permaculture consultant and teacher. She has spread her love of permaculture to a demonstration garden at Bissy’s Café and a permaculture education centre at Cargo.
“I love talking about it,” says Fiona, who holds monthly free introduction to permaculture sessions and will help anyone with an interest to get started.
“I thought, it is all well and good holding paid courses, but that will only get to so many people and I think everyone deserves that opportunity to learn and understand it… and taste how sensational the food is when it comes straight from the ground!
“My passion now, into the future, is to educate people and teach them about permaculture.”
Fiona runs information meetups at Bissy’s Café as well as hands on activities at their Cargo permaculture education centre, which is also home to a community garden, open for anyone who wants to get their hands dirty.
“I’ve always loved bringing people together and creating community. There’s so many people out there who are quite lonely and don’t have anywhere to go or things to do — so how do you meet other people? You can go to the pub, but it is not always the best place to meet people… so that was another reason for this,” says Fiona.
“This is an opportunity for people to come together, get skills and it is really quite therapeutic… It is physical, you can take in what nature is providing for you, you've got other people to talk to, you learn great things and it is just so good for the body and for the mind!
Anyone interested in learning more about permaculture is welcome to call Fiona on 0409 662 525 or ask for her at Bissy’s Café.
“Be warned; it is addictive!” says Fiona. “That’s one thing about it; you just can't get enough! But I love the permaculture world and if I can help people to do this and live this way that would be great. I'll help anyone learn about this, because I think it is good for the world and good for the future.”