Prominent Hill, 120 km south east of Coober Pedy, South Australia, is a long way from the coast of Africa, but distance won’t stop local geologist and part-time dancing champion Katie Hulmes from representing her country at one of the world’s biggest youth forums. 

Katie Hulmes on the job at Prominent Hill in the Far North

Katie Hulmes on the job at Prominent Hill in the Far North

Katie, 25, was selected with seven other Australians, four of whom draw from South Australia, to attend The Duke of  Edinburgh Awards International Gold Event (IGE), being held between 12 and 26 October 2008 in Mauritius.

The event is being hosted to build the skills and capacity of the world’s youth to contribute to solving global issues like poverty, environmental degradation and political instability.

Over two weeks, more than 120 delegates will partake in a host of programs, debates and workshops. Among them is a volunteer project at a bird conservation centre, multimedia training sessions and major discussions on developing social enterprises.

Katie Holmes with her Gold Award

Katie Hulmes with her Gold Award

 “I have never even been out of Australia before so I’m excited to be representing Australia and Adelaide among world youth leaders,” Katie said.

Katie is no stranger being a leader in her own community where she works as the Environmental Superintendent for Oz Minerals.

“Having trained as a Geologist and Environmental Engineer at Adelaide University I have always had a passion for the Australian outback”, Katie said. “Growing up in Adelaide saw me work on many projects like mapping the geology of the Flinders’ Rangers and more recently helping to establish the main groundwater supply for the mine at Prominent Hill”.

Katie Hulmes, Duke of Edinborough Dance Award Winner

Katie Hulmes, Duke of Edinburgh Dance Award Winner from Prominent Hill South Australia

“I am a big adventurer and thanks to The Duke of Edinburgh Awards I have competed in major endurance competitions including the 24 hour canoe marathons held on the Murray, and had the opportunity to be exposed to other fantastic youth projects available to us here in Australia.

While working in the male dominated profession of mining I have continued to pursue my passion for dance.  This year I placed second in the Senior Division One Calisthenics Association State Dance Titles, and also performed in the International Police Tattoo at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre.

It’s great and everyone on site is very supportive of my commitments outside of work.

These experiences and more have led me to be selected to attend the forum in Mauritius and I hope to share some of my unique lessons learned with other young people from around the world.

It is a fantastic opportunity to meet young leaders from around the world and I don’t think there is a limit to what I can learn and bring back to my work and the community here in South Australia,” Katie said”.

Naturally, Oz Minerals are very proud to have someone of Katie’s calibre working at Prominent Hill and Katie is equally as pleased that the company is supportive of her personal achievements.

Reprinted from: Coober Pedy Regional Times