Women’s Leadership for Our Planet’s Future by Marie



”I am a maths and science teacher at Maffra Secondary College in Gippsland, Victoria.  I completed a PhD in Immunology at the University of Melbourne but was drawn to the communication that teaching offered.  I became more interested in environmental causes over the last few years, and was inspired to apply for Homeward Bound when I surveyed 7 students in my year at the school and found that many of their parents did not believe in Climate Change. This really disturbed me, and I went looking for ways I could best communicate this complex issue to young people.

I hope to come away from the program with a really first-rate project that will enable better communication of climate change to young people – after all, they are the future!  I want my two children, who are one and three, to have a habitable world to show their own children!  I am also working to increase community-owned renewable energy sources with the Wellington Renewable Energy Network.

I am also passionate about promoting STEM fields to female students, having seen first-hand some of the inequity that exists in Science from my work in academia. Women are not being promoted to leadership positions in Science, which is grossly unjust.  Humanity is faced with arguably our most pressing issue in climate change, and we are excluding some of our best and brightest from the decision-making process!

I never thought I would be selected for this amazing global program, as there are so many amazing women who are participating.  Having met some of the other participants already, I am confident that we will all be able to make the world a better place through the program of Homeward Bound.”

To learn more about this awesome cause, check out the crowdfunding campaign page below:


Homeward Bound by TeamWA!

Team WA

Team WA

“We are a team of five women in Western Australia, among 80 participants worldwide, selected to take part in Homeward Bound 2018. This intensive 12-month leadership program for women in science culminates in a voyage to Antarctica in February 2018.

Why did we apply to Homeward Bound? Each of us has a strong desire to strengthen our leadership voice and to influence policy as it affects the future of our planet. One of the appeals of Homeward Bound program is that it focuses on higher-level leadership skills, including visibility, strategic capability, and policy and decision-making. And, of course, Antarctica is definitely a drawcard. We’re thrilled to have a chance to experience the world’s southern-most continent, not as tourists, but as a committed band of women in science with a shared vision to have a greater impact promoting gender equity and sustainability action.

Team WA Homeward Bound 2018 reflects the international makeup of the larger program and represents a wide range of science disciplines, interests and experiences.

We first met soon after we were accepted into the program — brought together by the intrepid group of Perth women who were part of the inaugural 2016 Homeward Bound voyage. Because the program requires a significant financial investment, the five of us teamed up to embark on a collaborative fundraising campaign. From the two-minute video we each produced as part of our application to dining with the Minister of Science and other MPs at Parliament House, our Homeward Bound experience has pushed us to step beyond our comfort zone. In the words of Tara Mohr, author of one of our required readings, “When women play big, we make things happen.”

Our Team WA Homeward Bound 2018 has served as a microcosm for the triumphs and challenges that arise when working collaboratively. While we all have a background in science, each of us has a very different working style and brings different life experiences to the team. We’ve had to learn how to manage expectations, listen, speak up and let our individual voices be heard. We’ve also had to learn how to effectively reach consensus and negotiate in the decision-making process.

These skills are helpful for anyone, but especially for women as we search for new collaborative models of leadership. We’re supporting each other in our search to find our voice and our inner compass as we set off on the journey of a lifetime.”

For more, check out the awesome Team WA Homeward Bound crowdfunding campaign page below, or head to Veronique’s, Jessica’s or Rachel’s individual Team Member pages:

Individual Team Member pages:

Homeward Bound: Jessica’s Leadership Voyage



In February 2018, I’ll join 80 women from around the world on a voyage to Antarctica with Homeward Bound, a global leadership initiative for women in science aimed at building a more equitable and sustainable future for our planet.

As a museum curator, I draw on my background in environmental science and science communication to develop exhibitions that celebrate and inspire people to conserve Earth’s amazing biodiversity in the face of global environmental change. I’m also passionate about sharing stories that showcase the voices of women in science.

I currently live in Western Australia, but I’m originally from the Unites States. Disheartened by the state of politics back home and recent policies that undermine both women and climate science, I’ve been searching for an opportunity to step up and contribute my voice to the larger conversation about these issues. I first heard about the Homeward Bound program through an article in the local newspaper. When I read about the vision of this global initiative and the inaugural journey to Antarctica, I knew this was something I wanted to be a part of.

I’m incredibly excited to be taking part in this once-in-a-lifetime leadership journey and opportunity to experience Antarctica and the affects of climate change firsthand. It’s also quite humbling to be part of this impressive cohort of women in science. What excites me most about the Homeward Bound vision is the chance to help build a network of like-minded and empowered women in science, representing 13 different countries from around the world. In an effort to raise funds to participate in the program, I’ve also teamed up with four other amazing women here in Western Australia to form Team WA Homeward Bound 2018.

Having recently turned 50, I feel a strong desire to challenge myself and to ‘play a bigger game’ by getting involved in a larger global network. Participating in this program will strengthen my leadership voice to speak up on behalf of our changing planet and its most vulnerable inhabitants. As the Homeward Bound tagline states, “Mother Nature needs her daughters.”

Jessica Brainard


Check out Jessica’s awesome crowdfunding campaign in support of Homeward Bound and her voyage to save the environment below: