BUNDY BUSINESSES: Succeeding in their chosen fields, a bunch of passionate locals have launched their own business start-ups recently.
BUNDY BUSINESSES: Succeeding in their chosen fields, a bunch of passionate locals have launched their own business start-ups recently.

BUNDY BORN: 21 recent local start-ups that need your support

START-UP businesses are booming in Bundaberg, with plenty of unique, handmade and quirky concepts.

Here are just some of the Bundy locals giving it a go after opening up a new business.

1. The Healthy Entrepreneur

Life balance wasn't always easy for Rebecca Corbett but now the successful businesswoman is passing on knowledge from her own experiences to help other business owners.

After years of working in the corporate sector, Ms Corbett moved to Bundaberg where she struggled to find employment.

When she decided to have children, this only became more challenging and seven years later, she decided to start her business Tally and Tick.

Workload and stress only intensified when Ms Corbett accepted a year-long employment contract, while continuing to build her own business on the side.

Ms Corbett said she started putting her business before her health and her diet started to slip, causing her to gain weight.

After four years, Ms Corbett made the difficult decision to sell Tally and Tick, but it wouldn't be the last time she created her own start-up.

Her contract ended and she launched The Healthy Entrepreneur, an organisation dedicated to helping other business owners to be successful, without overworking themselves.

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PICTURE OF HEALTH: The Healthy Entrepreneur Rebecca Corbett, is using her past experiences to help others run a successful, sustainable business and maintain a healthy balance.
PICTURE OF HEALTH: The Healthy Entrepreneur Rebecca Corbett, is using her past experiences to help others run a successful, sustainable business and maintain a healthy balance.

2. Forever Resin

Some things in life are so beautiful that they are worth preserving, which is why one creative local has built her own start-up, ensuring special memories last a lifetime.

Mother-of-three Nadine Chessell started making her own jewellery pieces, using anything from dried flowers and fruit to polymer clay, which she would then coat in resin.

Starting out as a hobby to do on the side while she studied occupational therapy at university, Ms Chessell never considered selling her unique and colourful pieces, until others began encouraging her to do so.

Creating Forever Resin, Ms Chessell's new side business specialises in handmade homewares and gifts using UV-resistant and food grade resin.

While the second year student has her sights set on occupational therapy because she loves to help others, she said it has been uplifting to be able to create something special that allows customers to remember an occasion or loved one.

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RESIN-ATING PRODUCTS: When COVID-19 meant mother-of-three Nadine Chessell had a bit more time up her sleeve, she decided to start her own business, making stunning resin pieces. Picture: Rhylea Millar.
RESIN-ATING PRODUCTS: When COVID-19 meant mother-of-three Nadine Chessell had a bit more time up her sleeve, she decided to start her own business, making stunning resin pieces. Picture: Rhylea Millar.

3. Thriive

As businesses begin to rebuild, two successful women are offering a service that will assist various-sized companies to thrive.

Over two decades of a special friendship, Monto local Misty Neilson-Green and Jade Kooiker have supported each other throughout their personal and professional lives.

One night over a glass of wine, the pair shared moments they had witnessed through their own careers, where businesses had been restricted by lack of knowledge and financial resources.

So the duo decided to combine their skills to assist other businesses with these challenges.

The pair created Thriive, a company that specialises in empowering not-for-profits, small and medium sized enterprises to improve their long-term capacity, viability and outcomes.

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THRIIVING BUSINESS: Jade Kooiker and Misty Neilson-Green from Thrrive Consulting.
THRIIVING BUSINESS: Jade Kooiker and Misty Neilson-Green from Thrrive Consulting.

4. Tomorrows Earth

Conscious about protecting the planet and providing natural, healthy alternatives, an exciting new business has opened up in Bundaberg's CBD

Specialising in home and beauty products, owner of Tomorrows Earth Evie Roycroft follows a holistic approach with a range that won't harm the environment and wildlife.

Growing up with a mum who worked as a naturopath and going on to study nutrition at university, Ms Roycroft has witnessed first-hand the benefits of selecting natural products.

Selling a wide range of reusable products from keep cups, stainless steel drink bottles and cutlery, to natural toiletries including make-up removal pads, aluminium-free deodorant and handmade and palm oil-free soaps, there are plenty of alternatives to choose from.

Other products include organic tea, septic-safe cleaning products and a naked beauty bar which allows customers to fill jars with clay, butters and oils.

In addition to the products being environmentally friendly, the small business owner said there are many benefits for consumers who use natural products too.

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PLANET PROTECTION: Evie Roycroft has just opened her new store Tomorrows Earth, specialising in natural, organic, reusable and cruelty-free home and beauty products. Picture: Rhylea Millar
PLANET PROTECTION: Evie Roycroft has just opened her new store Tomorrows Earth, specialising in natural, organic, reusable and cruelty-free home and beauty products. Picture: Rhylea Millar

5. Death By Sweets

We all have that one recipe that reminds us of our childhood and for the new owner of a small business in Bundaberg, the memories couldn't be any sweeter.

After a lifetime of growing up in a family full of bakers, it's no wonder Tamekah Smith fell in love with whipping up delicious creations in the kitchen herself.

From swirling her signature buttercream frosting on top of a fluffy vanilla cupcake, to creating the most elegant iced vovos filled with fresh raspberry jam and topped with blushed Chantilly crème, you wouldn't be mistaken by thinking it's more a form of art than cooking style.

And now the talented Bundy local has started her own small business, Death By Sweets, supplying sugar highs to the masses.

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DEATH BY SWEETS: After a lifetime of growing up in a family full of bakers, it's no wonder Tamekah Smith fell in love with whipping up delicious creations in the kitchen herself.
DEATH BY SWEETS: After a lifetime of growing up in a family full of bakers, it's no wonder Tamekah Smith fell in love with whipping up delicious creations in the kitchen herself.

6. Crafted With Love and Joy

A hairdresser turned teacher has just added another skill to her growing list, starting up her own small business to spread love and joy in the community.

Born and bred in Bundy, Rebecca Lovejoy is a woman of many talents.

The former hairdresser and current teacher who currently works at St Patricks Catholic Primary School and loves her job, found herself looking for a new hobby to keep her busy during the Easter holidays.

Named after her surname, Ms Lovejoy created Crafted With Love and Joy and is currently selling her handmade jewellery at weekend markets.

Serving as the perfect gift for someone special, the local maker said she is inspired by her mum who used to make her own polymer clay and gumnut baby jewellery.

Experimenting with different colours, shapes and styles, Ms Lovejoy enhanced her skills by watching YouTube tutorials and tested out quirky ideas at home, even creating a teacher's collection, featuring bright yellow pencils for hairclips and stationery inspired earrings.

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LOVE AND JOY: Bundaberg primary school teacher Rebecca Lovejoy has started her own business Crafted With Love and Joy but said it's her love for the hobby that drives her.
LOVE AND JOY: Bundaberg primary school teacher Rebecca Lovejoy has started her own business Crafted With Love and Joy but said it's her love for the hobby that drives her.

7. Beauty Lounge Bundaberg

Escape to a new Bundaberg oasis and get yourself pampered with their list of relaxing treatments.

Opening the doors to her new business Beauty Lounge Bundaberg last week, owner Tracie Mathison said it was a dream come true to be running her own salon after five years working in the industry.

And after welcoming her second child into the world, Ms Mathison said there was no better time to take the jump than the present.

The beauty therapist who will celebrate her 33rd birthday soon said she wanted to create a tranquil space where people can forget about what's going on outside the salon.

Offering popular beauty services, clients can book a massage, manicure, pedicure, microdermabrasion, dermal filler and waxing treatment, as well as get their brows and lashes done and leave the store feeling their best.

Conscious about protecting the environment, Ms Mathison said she stocks natural, organic products that help natural oils and protect the skin.

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BUSINESS IS A BEAUT: Owner of Beauty Lounge Bundaberg Tracie Mathison said it was a dream come true to be running her own salon after five years working in the industry. Picture: Rhylea Millar.
BUSINESS IS A BEAUT: Owner of Beauty Lounge Bundaberg Tracie Mathison said it was a dream come true to be running her own salon after five years working in the industry. Picture: Rhylea Millar.

8. Hellfire Global Sauces

There is a hot new trend setting fire to Bundy's tastebuds, but the question is are you game enough to give it a go?

After creating his very own range of hot sauce, Dion Forbes opened what has been labelled as the hottest chilli shop, right here in Bundaberg.

While the owner describes the chain of events as a "bit of an accident", Hellfire Global Sauces has been booming since the very first day of trade.

Stocking sauces from across the globe, the one-stop sauce shop stocks items from Ireland, the U.K, Africa and even our own backyard.

Mr Forbes said he is interested in teaming up with other businesses in the region to stock local chilli-infused products.

But the most exciting local collaboration is the one between the chilli shop and Jake's Candy, with a range of sweets available exclusively at Hellfire Global Sauces.

From bonfire honeycomb and lava chilli rocks to coconut chilli ice, fever fudge and fire fluff marshmallow, there is something for all lovers of sweet and spice.

Mr Forbes said the hottest sauce in his store is Highway To Hell, a sauce from his own Hellfire range which has become an instant sell out.

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RED HOT: Business is booming for Dion Forbes after recently opening up the world's hottest chilli shop Hellfire Global Sauces. Picture: Rhylea Millar
RED HOT: Business is booming for Dion Forbes after recently opening up the world's hottest chilli shop Hellfire Global Sauces. Picture: Rhylea Millar

9. Raw Fur Sure

Pets are members of the family, which is why many owners are making the switch to a natural, balanced and high quality raw diet, available at a new Bundaberg business.

Animal lover Debbie Gordon will celebrate the grand opening of her new business Raw Fur Sure at the Bundaberg East store this weekend.

Selling 100% natural treats, supplements and single-protein meals for cats and dogs by brand Raw 4 Paws, the meals are filled with nutritious ingredients and human grade meat.

Ms Gordon first came across the raw food when a local dog trainer from Dog Matters recommended the brand.

She said she instantly saw positive results in her two dogs Bella and Daisy and cat Peppa, which led to her interest in stocking the range locally herself.

With the ability to cater to the individual needs of each pet, Ms Gordon said she supplies meals suited to pets of all ages and dietary requirements.

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BEST FOR PETS: Owner Debbie Gordon is excited for Saturday's grand opening of her new Bundaberg business Raw Fur Sure. Picture: Rhylea Millar.
BEST FOR PETS: Owner Debbie Gordon is excited for Saturday's grand opening of her new Bundaberg business Raw Fur Sure. Picture: Rhylea Millar.

10. Refill Not Landfill

Bargara has started its own war on waste with a local family start-up fighting to reduce landfill by offering a self-serve station filled with biodegradable cleaning and beauty products.

Passionate about protecting the planet, and with the help of her bright seven-year-old son Kelly, Beverley Whip has created a range of ethically and environmentally conscious hair, body and cleaning products.

The mother and son duo have teamed up to create Refill Not Landfill; a self-serve station where customers can bring their own containers or purchase one in-store, with the exception of drink bottles and fill them with natural, biodegradable products.

Made with love in Australia, the all natural, plant-based and vegan products are palm oil, paraben and filler free.

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REFILL NOT LANDFILL: With the help of her seven-year-old son Kelly, Beverley Whip (pictured) has opened a self-serve station with all natural, eco-friendly hair, body and cleaning products. Picture: Rhylea Millar.
REFILL NOT LANDFILL: With the help of her seven-year-old son Kelly, Beverley Whip (pictured) has opened a self-serve station with all natural, eco-friendly hair, body and cleaning products. Picture: Rhylea Millar.

11. The Mummy Haven

On a mission to see mums flourish and rediscover themselves, a personal trainer with experience in how psychology can impact a healthy lifestyle is returning to the Bundaberg region.

Owner of The Mummy Haven (formerly known as Flourish Health and Fitness) Nicole Hay moved to Bargara with her family in 2016, where she started offering her fitness services to local mums.

As a mum to three adult men and two little girls aged one and five-years-old herself, the personal trainer knows all about the busy schedule parents face in their day-to-day lives.

Working as a personal trainer for almost eight years, Ms Hay is also certified in human nutrition, eating psychology and works as an Punchfit and MetaPWR instructor, as well as a pre and post natal trainer.

Passionate about helping others, Ms Hay is also on the way to completing a diploma in counselling, which she believes will allow her to offer more than just a work out and address what may stem some issues.

After a relocating to the Sunshine Coast for her husband's work, the fitness instructor is returning to Bargara and is excited about to move back to the region.

Focused on empowering her clients, Ms Hay said she does not believe in chicken and broccoli meal plans, crash diets, shakes and hardcore workouts, but does believe living a healthy lifestyle takes motivation, commitment and a hard work ethic.

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HARD WORK: Nicole Hay is encouraging Bundy locals to participate in her next six-week challenge.
HARD WORK: Nicole Hay is encouraging Bundy locals to participate in her next six-week challenge.

12. The Cookie Daze

A Bargara resident has traded computers for cookies and you could say it's a batch made in heaven.

Just before COVID-19 lockdowns were introduced across the country, Carmen Delorie relocated from Maitland to Bargara for her husband's work.

Up until the big move, Ms Delorie was working as an I.T systems engineer and with the change of scenery, came a change of heart.

Naming her new venture after her newborn granddaughter Daisy, The Cookie Daze was born.

Describing her unique product as an 'all occasion' cookie, the new business owner said her creations make an indulgent treat and sweet gift.

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GIVE AND BAKE: Carmen Delorie has traded in her career as an I.T systems engineer to bake cookies and 'spread the love'.
GIVE AND BAKE: Carmen Delorie has traded in her career as an I.T systems engineer to bake cookies and 'spread the love'.

13. The Beach Mill Cafe

Imagine enjoying a delicious seafood platter as you look out at picturesque views of the beach, which is just footsteps away and you don't even have to leave your own backyard to soak it up.

For Bundaberg residents, it's a luxury we are all too familiar with and thanks to a new beachside hotspot, it's only set to get better.

Passionate about their home and the food they serve, Joey Caruana and his partner Kirsty Rogers are undoubtedly two of Bundaberg's biggest fans and after running their successful business the Windmill Cafe for many years, the pair have brought a brand new experience to the region - The Beach Mill Cafe.

Situated at the Bundaberg Surf Life Saving Club in Bargara and with the stunning beachfront within arm's reach from the cafe, it's no wonder the business owners applied for the tender, which they won six weeks ago.

After undergoing a complete transformation, the look is just what you'd expect, with a reclaimed timber shopfront and shaded seating area on the grass, offering a relaxing venue by the ocean.

Popular options on the menu include acai bowls and bacon and egg rolls and as of next week, the cafe will be partnering with Red Shed Seafood to stock seafood platters and prawn buckets.

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NEW MILL: Joey Caruana from the Windmill Cafe has opened his new venture, the Beach Mill Cafe at the Bundaberg Surf Life Saving Club. Picture: Rhylea Millar.
NEW MILL: Joey Caruana from the Windmill Cafe has opened his new venture, the Beach Mill Cafe at the Bundaberg Surf Life Saving Club. Picture: Rhylea Millar.

14. Purify Air Wide Bay

After a decade of working in coal mines, Chad Pay decided it was time for a change.

Purchasing business franchise Purify Air Wide Bay, Mr Pay services areas across the region, ensuring residents have access to clean air.

Specialising in cleaning all types of airconditioning systems and mould mediation, the business uses natural, non-toxic and eco-friendly products.

Improving the efficiency of airconditioning units and reducing short and long-term costs, the maintenance work will also assist with asthma, allergies and respiratory issues.

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CLEAN AIR: Purify Air Wide Bay franchise owner Chad Pay and his partner Jade Holland.
CLEAN AIR: Purify Air Wide Bay franchise owner Chad Pay and his partner Jade Holland.

15. Married In Bundy

Tying the knot in Bundaberg just got a whole lot easier with an exciting new directory that showcases all local vendors for the big day.

When bride-to-be Alexa Field starting planning her upcoming wedding, she was overwhelmed by the range of quality choices available in the region.

Through assisting her parents with their own wedding venue, Ms Field also witnessed first-hand how challenging the process could be and decided to create a free wedding directory called Married in Bundy.

Designed to create a handy guide for loved-up couples and promote anything from Bundy florists and photographers to venues and catering, Ms Field said she wanted the directory to be a one-stop-shop for all wedding needs.

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WEDDING BLISS: In a bid to assist couples and promote small businesses, Alexa Field has set up a directory which features local vendor options for the big day.
WEDDING BLISS: In a bid to assist couples and promote small businesses, Alexa Field has set up a directory which features local vendor options for the big day.

16. TradeNow
After running his own business for the last decade, a Bundaberg tradie has used his experience to create an app that allows customers to pay for trades and services over time.

Bundaberg start-up and Australian first, the TradeNow smartphone app is supported by Zip.

Founder Matt Brennan said he was proud to release the app in his hometown of Bundaberg and where he currently works as a plumber.

The app allows consumers to find registered trades businesses and services within their area, apply for a Zip account and get the job done without the upfront cost.

Whether it be the installation of an airconditioner, landscaping the backyard, repairs, renovations or the emergency jobs, all work can be paid off overtime using the app.

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PAY LATER: TradeNow’s founder, and Bundaberg local, Matt Brennan, said TradeNow is a great solution for consumers and trade businesses alike.
PAY LATER: TradeNow’s founder, and Bundaberg local, Matt Brennan, said TradeNow is a great solution for consumers and trade businesses alike.

17. Cookie Chips

A student and amateur baker who relocated to Bundaberg last year, has started her own hobby cookie business and her mum says she's a chip off the old block.

Originally from the Philippines and studying to be a nurse, Ella Blanca doesn't have much spare time up her sleeves.

In the midst of working as an aged care worker at Blue Care and studying her degree, the international student has started up her very own hobby business, baking cookies from scratch.

Using fresh ingredients and experimenting with different flavours, Ms Blanca currently sells classic choc chip, white choc chip, triple chocolate, smarties and M & M cookies.

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SWEET IDEA: International student Ella Blanca relocated from the Philippines to Bundaberg last year and has now started hobby business Cookie Chips for fun. Ella Blanca bakes her cookies from scratch and her mum has given her flavours a tick of approval.
SWEET IDEA: International student Ella Blanca relocated from the Philippines to Bundaberg last year and has now started hobby business Cookie Chips for fun. Ella Blanca bakes her cookies from scratch and her mum has given her flavours a tick of approval.

18. Wen D's Childcare Educators Resources and Consulting

CHILDREN'S needs vary which is why one former industry worker has started making her own resources, designed to cater to meet all early childhood requirements.

Working in various settings of the childcare industry for two decades, Wendy Doolan discovered there was a demand for resources that catered to the needs of all children.

Ms Doolan also recognised that childcare workers didn't have a time and money required to source the items required, so she began making her own resources and selling them to childcare centres for an affordable price.

But when Ms Doolan became unwell and could no longer work the standard nine to five role, she needed to find an alternative source of income that she was still passionate about.

Her friend who also works in the industry encouraged her to start making her own resources, so she did.

From curtain rings and cardboard rolls, to bits of timber and metal, the Bundaberg local said children loved working with many materials and feeling different textures.

Ms Doolan has resource displays available to view and also offers workshops for childcare centres.

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NO TOY DIVISION: After working in the childcare industry for 20 years, Wendy Doolan discovered there was a demand for children with additional needs, so she started making her own educational resources.
NO TOY DIVISION: After working in the childcare industry for 20 years, Wendy Doolan discovered there was a demand for children with additional needs, so she started making her own educational resources.

19. Jaimee McLeod Art

Known for creating stunning pet portraits, Jaimee McLeod has since released custom hand painted pet earrings and keyrings, as well as her recent addition of mugs too.

Until recently, the artist was serving customers at Rise the Bakehouse but has switched pies and buns for paint and brushes.

It all started when the artist who has been painting for as long as she can remember, made a portrait to serve as a touching tribute to her beloved family pet who had passed away.

Gifting the sentimental piece to her mum and posting it to her Instagram page, the artist's world changed forever with requests popping up from all over the world.

And if that wasn't enough the young artist has also added a new collection featuring wooden decor, which is crafted with love in her grandpa's woodworking shed.

Painting wall hangings and rainbow stackers, the artist paints the pieces available in the new collection, which are made by her grandpa using locally sourced Australian wood.

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ROO-TIFUL PIECE: Bundaberg artist Jaimee Mcleod with one of her stunning pet portraits.
ROO-TIFUL PIECE: Bundaberg artist Jaimee Mcleod with one of her stunning pet portraits.

20. The Planetarian Food Co

If you've got a hunger for plant-based foods, you're not alone.

Many in the region have turned to plant-based diets either for health, the environment or love of animals.

It's a growing lifestyle choice noticed by Marcus and Sharon Hiesler, who are spending this week setting up the Planetarian Food Co in town.

Foods have been sourced from all around, with Bundy's own The Pocket Storehouse sourdough, yeast-free bread from the Sunshine Coast, frozen pizzas from Byron Bay and Billinudgel, Church Farm and Zest products coming from Northern New South Wales.

Lovers of cashew cheeses will be in heaven with a wide range, while the Hieslers swear by the red gum smoked salt seasoning.

The couple will branch out into offering organic milk from the Atherton Tablelands and hopes to eventually stock organic meats for the carnivores.

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PLANT-BASED: Marcus and Sharon Hiesler are opening the Planetarian.
PLANT-BASED: Marcus and Sharon Hiesler are opening the Planetarian.

21. Grow Early Education Centre

The doors of a brand new childcare centre have opened up in Bundaberg, with rooms full of innovative and sustainable concepts to nurture and help little ones grow.

Providing care to children aged from six-weeks to six-years-old, the Grow Early Education centre provides a warm, inviting space with engaging resources and equipment.

Centre director Rayleen Tramacchi said the centre has an experienced team who were passionate about providing a supportive environment for children's development.

The curriculum, which is tailored to suit the needs of all children, will include sustainable practices and gardening programs, encouraging Bundaberg's future leaders to protect the world they live in.

Featuring a spacious outdoor play area, children have access to a mud kitchen, water pump, tipi sandpit, herb garden, chicken coop and many pathways to ride bikes and trikes.

A large playground has also been installed with a fort and slide allowing adults to use the equipment with children if required.

Filled with natural and educational resources, the interior houses plenty of toys, books and art and craft supplies and is fully airconditioned.

Interactive whiteboard technology has also been installed in the classrooms and the nursery's sleep room features relaxation music and sparkly down lights to help bubs drift off to sleep.

An in-house kitchen will see meals prepared by a qualified chef, using fresh ingredients and vegetables and herbs from the centre's gardens.

Encouraging families to be involved in their children's learning experience, the centre has also created a parent's retreat room, where mum or dad can grab a coffee each morning after dropping the kids off at daycare.

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BRIGHT FUTURE: Bundaberg North’s Grow Early Education centre director Rayleen Tramacchi and 2IC Melanie Law. Picture: Rhylea Millar
BRIGHT FUTURE: Bundaberg North’s Grow Early Education centre director Rayleen Tramacchi and 2IC Melanie Law. Picture: Rhylea Millar

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