Each week, we will feature a member of the HBNC team, giving you a chance to Meet the Neighbours. The goal is to highlight and celebrate the people at the heart of our organisation, who work tirelessly to make the Wide Bay Burnett community a stronger and more resilient one.

This week, we'd like you to meet Rob Attenborough, our Social Enterprise Coordinator. Rob oversees The Wandering Teapot cafe, venue hire and events management, while delivering valuable hospitality training to at-risk young jobseekers.

Social Enterprise Coordinator, Rob Attenborough.

Tell us a bit about yourself. 

My name is Rob Attenborough. I am the Social Enterprise Coordinator at HBNC. I love taking on things that challenge me. Being the parent of two children, aged six and eight, definitely ensures I am constantly challenged at home to be the best example for them I can be. I enjoy challenging myself physically with high intensity workouts including weightlifting, gymnastics and cardio exercises as well as previous training in Kickboxing and Jiu jitsu. Throughout my professional life, I have always had a strong passion for learning in many different forms. I love speaking to a crowd and excel when I am put into unfamiliar situations that would cause most people a lot of stress and anxiety. I don’t like to sit still and tend to move at 100 miles an hour!

What is a quick summary of your professional background?

Throughout my career I have worked across a broad range of business management and HR roles. I have experience in marketing and have a passion for business development and team building. My career started with Operations Management and HR in the Fraser Coast region and progressed to a consultative role for McDonalds QLD/NT Corporate Office. My creative desire led me to move to self-employment, opening a specialised fitness training facility in Hervey Bay, as well as delivering business and leadership coaching. I enjoy roles that allow me to combine vision, creativity and business principles

What drew you to work with the Hervey Bay Neighbourhood Centre?

I truly believe that when you have a goal to achieve something great and make a big impact, you are much more powerful surrounded by a team than you are by taking on the challenge alone. I was drawn to work at HBNC because I believe the team we have developed, supported by a strong vision and commitment to continuously improve in what we deliver is a successful formula to make a lasting impact within the community. 

How do you see your role making a difference in the lives of the community’s most vulnerable?

Give someone a fish, they will eat for a day. Teach someone to fish and they will eat for a lifetime. Although this old saying may seem a little cliché, within my role at HBNC I am focused on finding the root cause of problems within our community to develop and deliver long-term, sustainable solutions. Although many services that we provide at HBNC are of a supportive nature, Within our social enterprise initiative that I lead, we look to not only support but to empower those involved to continue to thrive not just for a day, but for a lifetime. 

What’s one thing you hope to see happen or change for our community?

I hope to see people within the community become inspired and empowered. Inspired people empower communities. Inspired communities empower people.  If we can change the energy with which members of our community dream of the future and set goals to move forward, we will start to become more aware of what we are all capable of. If we don’t believe in ourselves, no-one will. We are the authors of our own destiny. When our community as a collective can embody this, the sky is the limit.