Farmer Dave is youngest of 11 kids and grew up on a beef cattle, cropping and sheep station that has grown to almost 100,000 acres. Like many restless bushies who deal with the intensity of droughts and floods he's tried to pack as much into his 40 years as possible.
He walked the catwalks and graced the billboards of Europe at 19, travelled to over 80 countries on a quest to understand the people and places of the planet, used reality TV to change people's views about gay Australians and raise awareness of the plight of drought stricken farmers, built a lamb business that changed the consumer producer relationships, built the worlds premier dog Disneyland and education facility, became an internationally recognised dog training expert and MC, introduced a plethora of dog sports to doglovers around the world and runs a host of education and entertainment platforms to build relationships between the city and country.
Let's just say he has done a lot, seen a lot, shared a lot and is able to articulate complex issues to people who are often unaware of what is going on outside their lives.
After working with the incredible team at BackTrack he has taken on their amazing philosophy of empowerment to young people in the city.
Director & Co-founder
Farmer Dave Graham
Will Clark hales from Western Australia, growing up with a large family including foster kids, on a small farm south of Perth in a place called Banjup.
Will studied his electrical trade, and then went on to become a marine engineer, working on some of the largest ships in the Australian waters. Throughout this career however, Will always found something was missing.
After spending some time in remote indigenous communities in WA and the NT, Will found a passion for working alongside youth and those in need. Young people who desperately need positive role models, skills and the idea that they can be whatever they want in life.
Moving to the east coast and coming across the ‘Back Track’ program based in Armidale, Will found a platform for sharing his practical skills and knowledge with young people in the community.
After visiting Armidale, Will was put in contact with Farmer Dave. With such an incredible skill set background and sharing the same alignment of 'being the change you want in the world' Will jumped ship to join the transformative Western Sydney project that is RuffTRACK and immediately became an integral part of our leadership team.
Mandy's bio coming soon!
Support Volunteer & sheep herding expert
Police Constable Belinda Flynn is a ten year veteran of the NSW Police Force across Eastwood, Mt Druitt and Hawkesbury Area Commands. As the Youth Liaison from Hawkesbury saw a massive need in the local community for the innovative and changing work of Bernie Shakeshaft and the BackTrack program and moved hell and high water to implement this unique approach in the Hawkesbury to ensure the gap in services was filled.
As a passionate advocate for building trust between youth and the police she believes that the BackTrack approach delivers on breaking down barriers and reduces anti-social behaviour within the community while empowering young people to re-engage in a safe environment with authority figures and reduces their involvement in the criminal justice system.
A Kamilaroi Man from Northern NSW Trey 'Ducky' Fernando brings not only his understanding of traditional culture but the lived experience of the BackTrack success story.
As a youthworker Ducky guides the RuffTRACKers through our programs, empowering them through education and community.
Ducky performs our school outreach Program 'Connect to My Country', which allows for a deeper connection of primary school aged children across the whole Australian story. Sharing his experiences, knowledge and sense of belonging.
Uncle Ducky Fernando
Hailing from the heart of Australia Zac brings a deep connection to country and an appreciation for working together to bring us all up. He is a brilliant speaker is able to bridge the gaps that can exist between groups in a way that forges a sense of togetherness.
Having graduated through the BackTrack program, Zac has lived through what our young participants are currently experiencing and gives them guidance through a share journey.
Zac manages both our Connect to my Country and Outback Challenge which gives city based kids an appreciation for life west of the Great Divide.
Uncle Zac Craig
Elaina is studying animal science at Western Sydney University and has a strong background in volunteering with young people around the globe and shares our ideals of the 'village raising the child'.
Elaina brings so much to our program including animal preparation for showing which will allow her to lead our livestock teams at shows, an ability to assist the self study days in animal science for our young people's qualifications this year, an absolute love of dogs and a whole lot of belief in education being the keys to unlocking your future and our shared journey.
Elaina is really excited us about what she can bring to our young people's lives. We can't thank her enough for helping with everything we do, not just all the stuff at RuffTRACK Farm... but our school incursions, our excisions to agriculture shows, circle work conversations and just being a non judgemental ear to hear what needs to be said.