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Part 2: Along The Yellow Dirt Road To Mildura

He has done it! What an achievement! Bernie has finally crossed the Victorian border and into the sweet town of Mildura. It has certainly been another hectic week on the road for our Green Machine, as we previously mentioned in Part 1: Along The Yellow Dirt Road to Mildura. With all the ups and downs of the journey aside, arriving in Mildura is an overwhelming feeling for Bernie. As the only Victoria town he will visit as he clips the top of this beautiful state, Mildura holds a very dear place in the hearts of Neighbourhood Watch Victoria and Neighbourhood Watch Australasia networks.

A founding force behind Mildura Neighbourhood Watch is volunteer extraordinaire Helen Worcester and Leading Senior Constable Joe Clarke. Both Helen and Joe have been heavily involved in the planning of Bernie’s ride into Mildura. Particularly planning Bernie’s welcoming comity into town at Mildura South Primary School. Bernie was welcomed and cheered as he arrived at the local primary school. Children from Prep to 6 watched to catch a glimpse of Bernie, his bike, and hear the stories he had to share. It was fitting too that that day was Harmony Day – a day to embrace everyone, celebrate cultural diversity, and remind those around us that everyone belongs.

Bernie was a part of a special presentation at the South Mildura Primary School. The students were encouraged to ask questions about Bernie’s Ride To Connect, and he could not have been more thrilled! Bernie congratulated the school on the children’s sensible questions, inquisitive nature, and willingness to get involved within their community – it is truly a credit to the school and the community of Mildura. Bernie was presented with a gift from local Indigenous artist Aunty Kath. The traditional Aboriginal artwork depicts Bernie’s travels, his journey across Australia, and how he is connecting communities far and wide. Photos of the artwork will be released soon, so stay tuned to our Neighbourhood Watch Australasia Facebook page for more information. We cannot thank Helen and Joe enough for their continued commitment to and love of their local Mildura community.

As Bernie continues on his Ride To Connect, he crosses into his final state, New South Wales (however he will make a quick visit to the Australian Capital Territory). With his spirits lifted after morning tea with South Mildura Primary School, Mildura Neighbourhood Watch and VicPol supporting him over the border, we know Bernie has enough energy and motivation now to see him onto Bondi Beach. His progress to date puts Bernie ahead of his original riding schedule, meaning he should arrive in Bondi about a week earlier than expected.

As he continues on his journey for another one or two weeks, Bernie grows more and more dedicated to connect communities, meet new people, share stories, and celebrate in the Australian spirit. Show Bernie your support no matter where you are in Australia or overseas! Follow along with Bernie via the NHWA Facebook page, Instagram, and Twitter – share stories with #journeywithbernie #ridetoconnect2017 #nhwkeepingyousafe

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NHWA Journal September 2021
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