Shannae is the owner of Remote Society, a platform providing a series of workshops for women to come together to be creative in a safe space to chat about life’s struggles and strengths and acknowledge the local talents of the Wheatbelt, drawing attention to the region. Shannae was born and raised in Cunderdin. She spent high school in Perth before studying preventative health at uni. Missing the land, she moved back to Cunderdin, into the finance space. She now manages the accounts for five businesses. She lives on a small farm with her three children (8yo, 4yo and 6 months old) and husband. They built their house together with her dad. “This has been one of our greatest achievements together as a family.”
Remote Society evolved after Shannae battled with a few health issues “I’ve had more surgeries than most for my age. Two knee reconstructions and recently two artificial discs in my neck and low back” Shannae admits the surgeries and her journey thus far helped Remote Society to be born.” I felt extremely overwhelmed and disconnected, even with the support of her loved ones close by.” For years Shannae wanted to provide Wheatbelt women with something fun and fulfilling to do. Perhaps to take their minds off some pretty hard life events, even for just for an afternoon or a few hours in the evening. “We all know how refreshed and fulfilled we feel after taking this time out for ourselves. It took this experience to make that leap forward to make this dream a reality.”
Aptly named the Remote Society represents exactly how it reads. RRR women may be remote, but we can come together and form a society of like-minded people who want to live their very best lives.
Remote; situated far from the main centres of population; distant & Society; a community or group of people having common traditions, institutions, and interests. The organisation allows women to have a real Wheatbelt experience, being spoiled with luxurious grazing platters, wine, and local teas. At the same time, you learn something new from the amazingly creative hosts in some of the most beautiful venues of the Wheatbelt. “We encourage you to take time out for yourself to fill your own cup, and every accomplishment starts with the decision to try.” Reflecting upon her experience of running these workshops, Shannae says, “I have ladies who have made lifelong friendships from meeting each other at workshops.”
Developing these workshops has been possible due to the generosity and support of all local venue hosts, local creative hosts (some of which had never done a workshop before) to the local caterers that cater for each event. Shannae uses local wherever she can, from cookie giveaways for their guests to candles, signage, preserved flowers, printing, even down to the cheese knives and tea we drink, and everything else you can think of! “Seeing creatives show their talents that would normally be hidden away at home without any platform to show them off” was a highlight for Shannae. She stated how her mum was a huge help attending all 16 workshops to help set up, be her right-hand woman, and offer suggestions and support while spending quality time together. “The time we spend together, honestly, is one of my favourite parts of what I do.”
Sharing a lot of her life on social media, Shannae says, “I think it’s extremely important to be relatable with your viewers, so they can feel like they are on this journey with you.” Admitting that she gets messages all the time saying thank you for being so raw, telling her story, and getting people excited for upcoming events in their area. “We sold out a 26-person workshop in Dowerin in under 2 hours.” Shannae believes this is through the power of social media, sharing stories, seeing her in the flesh telling a story, and letting people know how their ticket sales impact her and her family’s life. “When I first launched Remote Society, I remember the first workshop. I messaged all those near and dear to me to purchase a ticket because I was so worried it wouldn’t be successful. Now I believe that through the power of word of mouth and social media, tickets sell, and 10% are sometimes people I have met. The other 90% are new and believe in my truly humbling business.”
Living in the regions is the only place Shannae wants to be. “I absolutely love living in the Wheatbelt. At times it’s isolating and quiet, but I’ll take that over the hustle and bustle of the city any day!” Shannae says living in a remote location forces you to make quality friendships and partake in community sports, local committees and projects. “Small local communities working together is just the best reward, especially seeing changes within our community of great prestige.” Shannae professes how vital community is “Feeling a part of something and belonging and feeling accepted is what we all want our whole lives. When I come back to my roots and surround myself with my community and support network, that’s where I feel me!”
Starting a business in the region, Shannae says it is essential to ask questions and get support from like-minded businesses. “I am incredibly grateful to be a part of a strong women’s network of small business owners who bounce off each other, come together at events and support and encourage each other through each other’s achievements.” She is always happy and willing for people to reach out and ask her for assistance. “If I can be of any help, just ask”.
Looking toward the future of RRR Women in the regions, Shannae is hopeful that women will continue to push boundaries. “I believe we all can have a purpose and balance things so we can feel equal and valued”. She feels that you can have a successful business, a happy and healthy family life/work balance, support within a community and feel valued, all equally, and make a contribution to society.