Margot Busch (President)
My move to Ocean Grove in 1997 was a long-awaited sea-change after 30 years living in country Victoria. At first, I simply revelled in living on the coast and enjoyed being a recreational beachgoer (albeit a responsible one!), outside of my working life in community services. Soon after Coastcare started in 2010 I became involved in working bees and education events and joined the committee in more recent years. While I am still a recreational beachgoer, with snorkelling being a favorite summer pastime, I feel I now have quite a connection to and responsibility for looking after the plants and animals we all share this coastal space with. And I’m heartened to see so many other locals join us in taking care of our fabulous environment!
Frances McAloon (Vice President)
I am a social worker, working in family mental health in Geelong and living in Ocean Grove. I joined Ocean Grove Coastcare in 2013 after moving here from Melbourne, having lived in Point Lonsdale 20 years ago and wanted to return to this beautiful coast. Becoming a member of a volunteer group was a way to join the community and contribute to protecting the coast. I believe volunteering is important to both individual’s and the community’s health and wellbeing, it’s fun and we can all make a positive difference, no matter how small – be the change you want to see in the world!
Ross Middleton, (Treasurer)
I made the sea-change to Ocean Grove in 2013 after a few years holidaying in this area. I am now retired after a 40 year career as a civil engineer, and keen to contribute to the local community. Over the past few years I have been an active member of Ocean Grove Coastcare, and was also a member of the Barwon Coast Committee of Management. My particular interest and passion is for clean beaches and dunes, and I am keen to encourage others to be a Local Hero.
I moved to Ocean Grove with my family just over 10 years ago. I love living here, it is such a friendly community. Some of my favourite activities are bushwalking, gardening and birdwatching. I believe that our community needs to work to preserve habitat and our natural heritage for future generations to enjoy. It is wonderful seeing people of all ages getting out into and helping to protect our natural environment.
We moved to Ocean Grove at the start of 2017 and happily discovered Ocean Grove Coastcare a few months later. As a new local, being a member of the OGCC committee has given me a rich and real way to connect with other locals and get to know where I live. When I am not volunteering I'm likely to be found bushwalking or gardening.
With the Southern Ocean on the doorstep, moving to Ocean Grove over ten years ago was an easy decision. I've always loved the outdoors and like many locals the ocean quickly became my playground - be it surfing, swimming or beach walking. Having studied Environmental Science, when I first moved to Ocean Grove, I was keen to get involved with a local conservation group. At the time there was no Coastcare group in town, so we (a handful of naïve, but enthusiastic locals) decided to start one! That was 2010 and since then it's been a privilege to watch the group grow and be part of a collective that is making a positive contribution to our local natural environment. Now I'm a new mum, and more than ever I feel the importance of doing our bit to protect the natural world. There is only one. In years to come I look forward to watching my daughter explore the wonders of the natural world and a coast that is healthy and thriving.
I originally came from county Victoria and traveled the globe before being magnetically drawn to Ocean Grove’s little community - as it was in 2000. I am an Occupational Therapist who is passionate about supporting others to have connection to occupation and purpose. By choice at anytime of day or season I am outdoors, engaging with nature. I care deeply about our role here in our little bit of this magical natural world and enjoy participating in bush and beach walks, cycling and working alongside others in Coastcare’s weeding, planting and community education sessions. I consider it a privilege to be able to call this special part of Australia home.
I returned to make Ocean Grove my permanent home in September 2020 after an eight year hiatus. After living in Canberra for many years, I swapped mountain walks for coast walks. I soon realised the healing and invigorating power of the sea during the intermittent lockdowns. Wanting to do my bit for my community, I put my hand up for a Coastcare committee position. There’s nothing like the camaraderie you get when picking up cigarette butts with friends with the promise of coffee after — and you get your squats in! I have a background in writing, editing, event organising and social media and enjoy using these skills to support the work of the committee. Apart from walking, cycling, singing and yoga, I enjoy running my Meetup group, Bit of Everything Bellarine, in which we enjoy the best of the beautiful environment in which we live.