Business Profile: Matt Brine and The Fundraising People

Charity, giving, kindness and fun – these are all encompassed in The Fundraising People and their incredible leader Matt Brine.
I had the pleasure of meeting Matt as we trekked to Mt Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, the Rooftop of Africa. Matt was my inspiring guide who gave us not only great encouragement and support, but also wise advice and great conversations.
I learnt so much from Matt about Charity and Fundraising as he has helped many charities raise millions for such worthy causes. Learn why Matt and his lovely wife Rachel started this great business and what drives them to keep raising the bar for Charity.
  1. Name; Matthew Brine
  2. Occupation/ business: The Fundraising People, making profits for non-profits
  3. Position: Director
  4. Country of Residence; Australia
  5. email/contact/ website :, 0425244444,

  6. Twitter handle/ Facebook/ Linkedin/ YouTube page; @Fund_Raisers Facebook: the fundraising people.

The Fundraising People

  1. Give us your elevator pitch. What does your business do?

We raise money for non profits by inspiring members of the public on the street and in shopping centres to think about some other than themselves and give a regular donation, via their bank account or credit card, to a cause that makes a difference to people all over the World.

8. When did you start your business? November 2008

9. What’s your passion? Raising $ for charity, my family, making a difference ensuring a leave a positive legacy

10. What do you love most about running your business? My awesome team of inspired leaders.

The Fundraising People

11.What are three difficulties you face in running your business?

  1. Public apathy
  2. Making profit whilst working with non-profits
  3. Hitting our ambitious targets

    12. What are three pieces of advice you would give to someone starting their own business?

    1. Get a good accountant and ensure you have a handle on the $
    2. Ensure you have staff that are disciplined and passionate
    3.  Find out what you are best at and stick to it

    13. Tell us, with an anecdote, why your business has changed your life?

Everyday I wake up knowing my work saves lives. I work with an awesome bunch of people who are all committed to changing the world for the better by saving lives and making a difference.

14. How do you manage a work/life balance? It is tricky as my wife is a fellow Director. I ensure that I take time off to spend with the kids, I especially enjoy the spontaneous decisions to go to the beach or the movies… The kids love the excitement!


15. What movie most inspires you in running your business? Gandhi springs to mind. His total commitment to his passion in a non violent way is truly inspirational and something we talk about with our fundraisers a lot.

16. The best book to read before starting a business or when running a business? the E-Myth is an absolute must. I read it before starting my business and it made a huge difference in the set up phase.

17.  Your favourite inspiration/ motivation/ business quote?

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change 
Children must be taught how to think, not what to think.” ― Margaret Mead


18. The 4 words that best describe your business? Inspired, Leadership, Passionate, Community

This was one of my first blogs almost 3 years ago when I broke my back. It’s funny, it’s one of my most searched blogs for the term “Plastic back brace” and “travel with a broken back”. Broken backs are extremely common and you know what … they’re not life ending! I’m still snowboarding, mountain climbing and fitter than I think I ever was. I’m just more aware of my body and fragility.

What’s your so called “weakness”?

Lovelly Travels

When booking a ticket to MelbourneThe back brace - helping me in more ways then I would ever have imagined
 2 months ago I considered the amount of work I would have at the time, assignments I had to do and various social commitments that may get in the way of my trip. Never in my wildest dreams did I think that I would also be dealing with the complication of a broken back.


Dreading the car trips, plane rides and airport security, I arrived at the airport on Saturday afternoon less than excited to say the least. To feel nervous before a flight was a foreign feeling to me and not one I want to experience again. I felt anxious, unsure and slightly bewildered as we approached Sydney’s Kingsford Smith Airport. A few deep breaths and a big hug from dad were necessary!


To my amazement, I had no need to worry. The staff at Jetstar, Australia’s fast growing domestic and international…

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Business Profile: Strawberry Communications, Johanna Baker – Dowdell

Strawberry Communications owner is as sweet as its name suggests. Johanna Baker-Dowdell is a business owner and a mum. She enjoys the freedom of running her own business from home and take care of her young family.

Johanna has also set up a business with a friend, Stanley & Nelson making delicious cupcakes which are now in high demaand.

Learn more about Joh and why she generates such amazing publicity and loves her business.

  1. Name; Johanna Baker-Dowdell
  1. Occupation/ business: Strawberry Communications and Stanley & Nelson

  1. Position: Owner and Co-Owner
  1. Country of Residence; Australia
  1. email/contact/ website:,

Twitter handle/ Facebook/ Linkedin/ YouTube page: @JohannaBD @stanleynnelson,, and

  1. Give us your elevator pitch. What does your business do? Strawberry Communications generates amazing publicity!
  1. Why did you start your business? I wanted to find something I could do from home with a newborn that used my existing writing and PR skills so I started freelancing and soon it grew into a business.
  1. What’s your passion? Writing, travel and sampling amazing food. When I can combine the three I’m in heaven!
  1. What do you love most about running your business? Being my own boss means I can work from my favourite café if I want to, setting my own hours around my family commitments and being picky about who I’d like to work with.

  1. What are three difficulties you face in running your business?
  1. Cash flow
  2. Time management
  3. Switching off
  1. What are three pieces of advice you would give to someone starting their own business?
    1. Don’t wait until the website/business cards/pitch is perfect, just start and make changes as you go, because if you wait for perfection you will never do anything.
    2. Factor in time for you every day, even if it’s just enough time for a drink in peace, because you don’t want to lose who you are amongst the busy-ness of running a business and a life.
    3. Have fun doing what you do because it will consume you!
  1. Tell us, with an anecdote, why your business has changed your life? I didn’t always see myself as a business owner, or even a mother, but I became both when I turned 31 and now can’t see myself any other way. After freelancing for several months I organised day care for my eight-month-old son to attend a business mums networking event and while there speaking with other mums in business it dawned on me that I was actually running a business. I stopped at the Department of Fair Trading on the way home and registered my business name (the form had been filled in and sitting in my handbag for months).

  1. How do you manage a work/life balance? Sometimes not well, but I make my business work around my family which means I walk my son to and from school every day and work during school hours and then again after my sons have gone to bed if I need to. I make sure I have time at the weekend, particularly Sundays, to spend quality time together.
  1. What movie most inspires you in running your business? Up in the Air was a good reminder for me about what is important in my life.
  1. The best book to read before starting a business or when running a business? The upcoming Business & Baby on Board business mum bible, of course! 

  1. Your favourite inspiration/ motivation/ business quote? “Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” ~ Albert Eistein
  1. The 4 words that best describe your business? Creative, storyteller, broadcaster, connector.

Congratulations to my talented and beautiful friend Adair. She has just created her first ever blog. Look at this stunning photo. So many more wonderful images and words to come.


I met this couple at the market in Varanasi and sat down with them to watch the world go by


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Check out this epic write up on the World Heli Challenge in Wanaka, New Zealand. Would love to get to this event some time.

Incredible video and amazing photos!


24 hours after the World Heli Challenge closure athletes are still celebrating in Wanaka, New Zealand (thanks to Carlton Dry). Why wouldn’t they want to keep ‘sending it’ after such an incredible experience! Here are some inspiring highlights in Tomohiro Fujii’s award winning documentary of the event.

Photo cred: World Heli Challenge

Congratulations to the winners:

The overall winners (best all around skiers and snowboarders) were chosen for their performance over the two days of competition (Extreme Day and Freestyle Day).

Top Three Female Skiers
1. Natalie Segal
2. Jacqui Edgerly
3. Victoria Beattie

Top Three Male Skiers
1. Marcus Eder
2. Sam Smoothy
3. Nick Devore

Top Three Female Snowboarders
1. Abby Lockhart
2. Ratty Sheidow
3. Jett Elkins

Top Three Male Snowboarders
1. Will Jackways
2. Shin Biyajima
3. Antti Autti

Freestyle Day

Snowboard Women
1st place – Abby Lockhart
2nd place – Ratty Sheidow
3rd place…

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Yoga Aid 2012 in Melbourne

Proud to announce I will be the  Black Dog Institute Representative at Yoga Aid , Melbourne on Sunday September 9th. I’ll be speaking about Depression and Anxiety awareness and how the wonderful Black Dog Institute is helping with this important issue and how Yoga can be of great help.

The Aim of Yoga Aid Challenge 2012? To raise $1 million for 3 different charities, including the Black Dog Institute.

The “Yoga Relay” will begin in Sydney, travel around the globe through 20+ countries at 200+ events, and end at sundown in Los Angeles.

Yoga Aid World Challenge: Melbourne  will be held at Ringwood Secondary College – learn more at their Facebook page

Hope to see you there!!


In October 2012, I will climb Machu Pichu for depression and anxiety awareness. The Peru Challenge 2012 will run from October 20-31 and raise much needed funds for Black Dog Institute for the research and awareness of mood disorders. This is a cause close to my heart and I’m doing it honour of my Grandma who lived with depression most her life and also the many friends and other family members who live with this mood disorder. Please donate to my page and learn more about my adventure: