Sophie Weldon is an experienced public speaker, filmmaker and recognised leader and innovator in her field. She is a strategic storytelling and intergenerational specialist, a Gross National Happiness Ambassador, 2016 ANZ Innovator of the Year, 2015 Myer Innovation Fellow and in 2014 she was a Changemaker in Residence at FYA. Sophie has worked with several key social and private sector organisations before starting her own social enterprise, Humankind Enterprises.
The seeds were sown for this business when Sophie was 14 years old. She experienced first hand the profound impact that one story can have when she became friends with a former refugee called Adut. Adut's story and their friendship inspired Sophie to stand up for things that she believed in. In fact, it led them to become Australia's first Youth Representatives for the UN Refugee Agency.
Many things came from that one story, including a life long friendship and the passion to value, record, share and archive stories in order to create more positive and authentic connection. Because when people are connected, they are happier, healthier and more resilient. Sophie's vision is to now harness the power of storytelling and connection in order to strengthen the fabric of our Australia
Her organisation develops projects and platforms to harness the power of strategic storytelling to provide individuals and organisations with the opportunities, tools and processes which foster connection and enhance acceptance, collaboration, well-being and resilience. They use their storytelling video booths, workshops and programs to develop meaningful pathways of connection and are collaborating with Deakin University to enable scaling of its personalised story programs and activities though the development of a story-capturing App.
They have developed a specialised strategic focus on connecting youth and seniors via storytelling and aim to significantly build resilience and social connection in regional, rural and urban communities.
StoryPod | Every story matters; share yours.
Utilises mobile spaces, events and experiences to capture ideas, opinions and stories that connect people.
StoryPod video booth: A pop-up video booth is available for hire to create interactive experiences at events and effectively capture the stories and ideas from your community, while building your database and marketing content.
StoryPod app and web platform: The Deakin Incubator Group are helping Humankind Enterprises develop a story capturing app that will be accessible on phone and tablet to guide the user through the process of recording their family and community stories. They are building a search engine for stories that enables users to view videos by theme, key word, time or event.
StoryPod intergenerational program: Combining StoryPod’s story gathering and engagement tools and Lively’s technology help model, Humankind Enterprises have created an intergenerational program that employs young job-seekers to work and connect with older people in aged care environments, recording and learning from their life stories, wisdom and experiences, and helping them learn how to use the internet and technology to connect with friends, family and their interests.
The social impact of StoryPod is specifically aimed at reducing the social isolation faced by older Australians, facilitating more meaningful connections between youth and elders and ensuring that Australian stories are not lost.