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National Hands Network (NHN) believes that meaningfully employed, engaged and entrepreneurial people are not borne. THEY ARE MADE.

Traditional education provides little for marginalised people that fall between the cracks.

NHN provides an extra curricular solutions based learning programme offered to people in marginalised rural & regional areas. NHN delivers its tailored manufacturing programmes via their NHN TRADE YOURSELF programme. A practical skills problem solving model, assessing local issues and returning local solutions, learning and outcomes in an non intrusive collaboration with local community.

In Australia the National Hands Network harnesses natural resources, talented Australians young and old to work together to create paid work opportunities that are building up their local communities and creating jobs.

The NHN organisation drives 3000 kms each week delivering technology, educational resources and business networks that otherwise only exist in capital cities. Delivering global business tools to marginalised communities is a big part of the answer to their sustainability and also part of the solution to a bigger National economic problem, Australian Made

NHN programmes targets existing, but most importantly the next generation, addressing the toxic exodus of the brightest and best to big cities.


MP Lisa Chesters visits the Woodgang

Melissa Liu

Lisa Chesters is a member of the Labour party in the House of Representatives. She was welcomed by the CEO of National Hands Network Mickael Pinto and the product developer Miranda Pereira to meet the NHN’s Young Manufacturers Group in Bendigo, The Woodgang. Lisa was given the opportunity to see, touch and play with the innovative products being developed by NHN and the WoodGang.  She received the original brief given to the team, handled original prototypes, concept drawings and was then given a preview of the new product in the category of family/kids activities that the NHN and Woodgang have developed for launch in August 2015. The raw materials used are recycled wood palettes. NHN and the Woodgang thanks Lisa Chesters for her generous time and spirit.


Melissa Liu

The Young Manufacturers Group in Bendigo named ‘The WoodGang’ would not be possible without their sponsors.

Local Bendigo businesses have thrown their support behind our group of disengaged youth and the results are nothing short of incredible.  The NHN team and the WoodGang held a “Thank the sponsors” BBQ, with special focus on the support from Kencor & Advance Pools & Spas.  Barry and Dusty from Kencor have been game changers for the WoodGang.  Their amazing donation of power tools and equipment totalling thousands of dollars and ongoing mentorship has seen the WoodGang’s skills and production of products reach a quality rarely seen in handmade timber products.

The team at Advance Pools & Spas lead by Andy, have given our Young Manufacturers not only a roof over their heads while they work, but much needed emotional, moral and logistical support.  Jumping in the truck and collecting pallets with Dave at Advance is now a weekly occurrence and one that everyone involved looks forward to.

One other person who has had an amazing influence on this team, and is seen as a Father figure, is David.  David has been retired for 5 years and now spends a few hours per week checking in on the WoodGang, offering technical support and more.  "Tool Day Tuesday" with David has been a breakthrough for the Team as now every member is comfortable using all the equipment, which is something we never thought would happen.  With anxiety, phobias and general fear of power tools being a major factor within the team, with David's help, these fears have long been forgotten.  The WoodGang is really starting to realise there is nothing stopping them from reaching their goals.

We thank our Sponsors and Mentors!!

National Hands Network: COLLABORATION AT IT'S BEST!!

Melissa Liu

National Hands Network YMG Bendigo build a Christmas Tree for the JMG: Good Eggs Wedderburn.

In November each year Wedderburn holds an annual Christmas tree festival. The National Hands Network runs its programmes in Wedderburn a rural location that is 2 hours and 20 mins from Melbourne, Australia.

74 kilometres down the road from Wedderburn in Bendigo the National Hands Network YMG programme decided to surprise the local JMG: Good Eggs!! They developed an interesting Xmas Tree concept using recycled wooden palettes for the JMG: Good Eggs kids in Wedderburn to decorate and enter into the 2014 Wedderburn competition. The tree was made from 72 different sized wooden planks that when held at the core by a pole spiralled to form the natural shape of a tree. The pieces were cut and finely sanded by hand so they would be safe for the kids to hold whilst painting and decorating. 

72 separate pieces meant each child in the JMG:Good Eggs programme could put their special mark on an aspect of the final item. Being a modular design also meant it was easy for assembly and disassembly for the Xmas Event.

The National Hands Network JMG: Good Eggs Xmas Tree placed 2nd in its category. Bravo Wedderburn JMG:Good Eggs!!!!

Congratulations must go to the successful collaboration between the two National Hands Network clusters of Wedderburn and Bendigo. That is surely the spirit of christmas joining hands and creating a very unique, yet personalised project together.


GOOD EGGS: Participation at the farmers market in October 2014

Melissa Liu

Last Sunday, 17 Victorian school students took part in a NHN Good Eggs sales initiative. They held a Good Eggs stall at a local farmers' market, selling the wares they spent 12 weeks manufacturing. Their raw materials was recycled egg cartons. The students designed and made home and lifestyle products such as flowers, magnets, christmas decorations and sold all of their items during the market. NHN Good Eggs received post event orders for their flowers and christmas decorations... always good to know that demand exceeded supply!!