SITC is a very small, grassroots, not-for-profit with a big heart, a significant impact, and a bold vision that's being realised: a future rural Australia where every one of our mates knows it's always okay to say no to booze.
Our daily mission is to affect national social change and social impact through inclusive straight-talk and truth from the lived-experience perspectives of rural people, for rural people.
SITC doesn't advocate or operate from an anti-alcohol or prohibitionist standpoint. We drive friendly conversations that everyone can participate in and learn from - and this is how we've encouraged leaders across the rural and agricultural sectors to step up alongside us and include the #OK2SAYNO message in their workplaces and on farms across Australia.
Additionally, we operate to support and connect remote people seeking to reduce or cut out alcohol through our carefully curated and monitored peer-to-peer online rural support group, the Bush Tribe.
People must understand that SITC is not a programme, service provider, or professional/clinical one-on-one AOD counselling point. However, we work closely with the best leading national Australian organisations with the funding, staff, and capacity to meet those needs. You can find those we recommend you reach out to HERE.
SITC was created in 2015 when founder Shanna Whan recognised a gaping hole in rural Australian mental health - namely; nobody was driving straight talk or conversations around the truth of booze in the bush. So she decided to be the change she needed to see. Eight years on, SITC is a nationally respected voice representing rural and remote Australians and the truth of our often silent fight.
Our CEO & Founder is north western NSW rural woman Shanna Whan - who overcame a life long battle with trauma-connected alcohol addiction in 2015 and decided to devote her life to ''being the change''. While she has become known nationally for her 2022 Australian of the Year recipient for the Local Hero win, her trip to the UK as one of 10 hand-picked Australians to attend Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth's funeral, and as one of Marie Claire's Woman of the Year finalists - her heart and soul is not driven by shining lights or accolades - but in the grassroots aspects of her work, and those she fights for. You can read more about Shanna and catch up on her years of national voluntary media contributions here.
Our team is currently 2 full time staff: Shanna Whan and the backbone of our operation, Felicity ''Flip'' Nolen - who runs the back end of SITC and ensures our process, procedure, and admin is tip-top. We have recently signed Justin Lippiatt into a part-time consultancy role for governance and operational support. We all live and work remotely from home.
We're focusing on growing our Directorship and staff in 2023 - but our founding directors are Tim Whan (pictured,) Felicity Nolen, Shanna Whan, and Alexandra Brennan. Since inception, we have had Ally and Matt Tonkin come and go, and our current board is Shanna Whan, Felicity Nolen, Tim Whan, and Justin Lippiatt. Each director brings the essential ingredients of loyalty and passion to change the conversation around booze in the bush. All of us are rural, and all have different skills including business acumen, PR and comms expertise, and admin / systems support.
In December 2022 we formally welcomed Justin Lippiatt as a new director to the board. And in March 2023 we signed Justin on to work within the organisation to support Felicity and Shanna in their full-time roles. Justin is a hugely welcome addition to the SITC family as he is experienced in all aspects of organisations, finance, management, and governance. As if that wasn't enough, he's a man with 24 years of alcohol-free life and lived experience, too, and will be active in our Bush Tribe support to add his lived experience.