ABC Heywire 2020 winners

ABC Heywire has announced 37 young regional winners in its 2020 storytelling competition.
Since 1998, Heywire has become a powerful place for regional and rural people, aged 16 to 22 years, to share their stories and make a difference in their communities and this year, hundreds of people entered from across regional, rural and remote Australia.
The winners were chosen for “telling it like it is” about life in their part of the country, from dealing with the drought to fleeing a war-torn country and finding a safe home in Tasmania. 
Jade Cicak, a  20-year-old Barkindji woman, is one of the latest Heywire winners, and says, “I feel pretty excited, very lucky to be honest. I’m so far away from anywhere and no-one really knows much about Menindee (Far West NSW) and the community here, so to be picked is pretty special I think.” 
Director of ABC Regional & Local, Judith Whelan, says, After 22 years, Heywire just keeps going from strength to strength.
“Heywire continues to provide important opportunities for young rural and regional storytellers to develop their talent and to give them a national voice. We are very proud to share their stories with audiences across the country.” 
In February 2020, the winners will attend the Heywire Regional Youth Summit in Canberra and during the week-long summit, the winners will meet with Members of Parliament and community leaders, to develop ideas to strengthen their communities. 

This years winners

Jacob Yunupingu  Yirrkala, NT  The Bush Mob program has helped me change my choices in life to get back on the right track. 
Rochelle Tipiloura  Port Keats, NT  Moving away from my community gave me the strength to never give up. 
Telisha Watson  Tennant Creek, NT  From tucker to medicine, my grandparents have shown me how the bush can provide and heal. 
Kelsang Dolker  Garran, ACT  From Tibet to Canberra, my dream is to tell stories that will make the world a better place. 
Jess Hewett  Wollongong, NSW  I will not be silenced about climate justice! 
Marie Knight  Grenfell, NSW  My love for gardening… an odd hobby for someone my age! 
Fenella Jamieson   Narrabri, NSW  I’ll never forget the day we saw the bone-dry riverbed. We’ve always had years of drought but never like this. 
Zoe McLaren  Temora, NSW  Longing to hear the pitter patter of rain drops on our roof again. 
Kirra Hampson  Dubbo, NSW  “I’m pansexual!” the words echoed around the school hall. 
Findlay Walker  Kalaru, NSW  Dyslexia isn’t a weakness, it’s my strength. 
Keely Johnson  Hallidays Point, NSW  Growing up just fine with divorced parents, a gay mother, domestic dad and six siblings. 
Timothy Martin  Doubtful Creek, NSW  Dad’s hard work inspires me to help keep the farm together and make him proud. 
Thomas Craft  Newcastle, NSW  Without even realising it, basketball has shaped my life and my confidence. 
Mitchell Agnew  Glenview, QLD  I see robotics playing an important role in our future and I want others to be part of it. 
Katherine Butler  Glenlee, QLD  Sign language is beautiful, and my disability is not something to be feared or shunned. 
Zane Palithorpe  South Kolan, QLD  I haven’t made the best choices in the past, but a new school has helped me focus on a career. 
Olivier Gisubizo  Brinsmead, QLD  “Did you live in a hut?” Educating my friends about the Africa I know. 
Tanny Armstrong-Reilly   Cloncurry, QLD  School, friends and art have helped me connect to my culture and inspired me to dream big. 
Rahila Abdul Hadi  Toowoomba, QLD  Making Australia home as we fled Pakistan to find hope in Southern Queensland. 
Brandon Dent  Wellington, SA  Thanks to my school’s musical production, I discovered a different side to myself. 
Renae Kretschmer  Wirrabara, SA  Mum won’t be there in the orchard with us this year… but somehow those apricots bring me closer to her.  
Lilli Fulwood  Moorak, SA  I’m proud to be a home-school kid and I wouldn’t have my schooling experience any other way.  
Taylor Dolling  Kielpa, SA  I can’t stop the drought, but I can stop my little lambs from dying. 
Jade Cicak  Menindee, SA  Water is part of our culture, and without it, our culture is fading. But through art, the river lives on. 
Indigo Clarke  Launceston, TAS  I have Tourette’s, but I am comfortable in myself and the way my body tics.  
Joly Karabite  Hobart, TAS  Waiting by the phone for four years for the chance to have peace and happiness again. 
Maddie Fogarty  Ballarat, VIC  I often felt out of place with my disability, but my sports-mad town has given me confidence.  
Sam Kane  Bendigo, VIC  We saved the Golden Square pool and it’s now the communities beating heart. 
Chloe Bethune  Sale, VIC  Connecting to culture has helped me to forget the day I nearly died. 
Rebecca Mutela  Albury, NSW  I never want to forget where I came from. 
Anyueer Majur  Swan Hill, VIC  Thanks to my friend’s support, I feel more confident about standing up for racial equality. 
Josie Carrigg  Wycheproof, VIC  The local Op Shop is where I’d rather be, and full of clothes I’d rather wear. 
Amishah Monola  Broome, WA  My Mum’s Malaysian and my Dad’s from Finland, so what does that make me? 
Ebony Thompson  Karlgarin, WA  What really makes a town? Sport and the annual gilgie races! 
Brielle Hunt  Dunsborough, WA  Becoming completely deaf in the last year has changed my life, but it’s my superpower, not a burden. 
Blake Hunter  Kalgoorlie, WA  I was afraid of being judged for my voice. But rap music is helping me overcome my anxiety. 
Jivaughn Coaby  Broome, WA  I knew I had to step up to achieve my goal of one day going to University.