When Megan Harrison started dreaming about Pilbara landscapes, snakes, and frogs, she knew she had to move her life up to Hedland. She and her husband Mitchell haven’t looked back, making their mark in the Hedland community.
With no family here, Megan knew the best way to create a network was to get involved with organisations with similar interests to hers, which took her straight to Care for Hedland. This local not-for-profit organisation aims to make Hedland a sustainable, environmentally-friendly town.
Through volunteering at Care for Hedland, Megan has developed a passion for conservation, particularly when it comes to flatback turtles, which famously hatch on the beaches of Hedland.
“I knew nothing about turtles before I moved here,” she said.
“But now I understand the impact industry has on these incredible creatures, and we feed information into global research.”
Megan also has a bit of a green thumb, which led her to get involved in the Rotary Community Garden.
“Some of my most precious and simplest interactions have been through working at the Community Garden,” she said.
“We’ve only been here one year, and our garden is thriving with flowers, all because of the generosity of the people at the Community Garden who have given us advice on how to grow things in such a dry, arid place.”
Megan said she once heard doctors were increasingly prescribing volunteering as part of health management.
“There are proven health benefits of going out and doing things for other people and serving your community,” she said.
One of her favourite memories in Hedland is when the Care for Hedland crew decided to clean up outside of the South Hedland shopping centre, and before long, random community members joined in.
“It took minutes before all the rubbish was gone. That’s what this place is all about,” Megan said.
Currently, Megan and Mitchell are fostering a cat named Meatball through SAFE Hedland, and you will often hear Megan volunteering her time for some sort of community BBQ or event.