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August 2023 Newsletter

This month's banner is inspired by The Royal Queensland Show (The Ekka) 12th - 20th August






Welcome one and all!

Hello all and welcome to the August newsletter. What a month we have had!!!!

Our home-schooling team has begun their 10-week course and is already running strong with some great ideas and creations. It is fantastic to see the level of enthusiasm for this course from both the students and their parents.

Dan has been very busy traveling down to Mac Lace and conducting several classes for them as a part of our inter-industry collaboration. The results of the items being produced is awesome to say the least. These joint ventures within the leather industry are key to keeping our trade alive and making sure that all involved come out on top.

Our newest member of our team – Callum, has fitted in well and brings a whole other skill set to our ‘leather vocabulary’. Callum will be one of our senior instructors at the centre and in the high schools next year.

The Gatton show was held this month from the 21st to the 22nd. We set up our stand and had some very valuable community engagement come out of our presence there. The level of interest from the community was incredible and the support for what we do was somewhat overwhelming. We submitted a few items for judging in the craft section and came away with two (2) first places and one Show Champion sash. So all-in-all, it was a very worthwhile endeavour.

As always, I like to personally thank my team for all the hard work they put in to make BOOTSTRAPS what it is today. Without you all, we could not achieve what we do.

Stay tuned for next month’s newsletter as we will hopefully have some very big news to share with you all. Until then, stay safe and all the best to you and your families.

- Sam Kavanagh, CEO Bootstraps




We mentioned in a previous newsletter that we were planning some classes for a group of homeschoolers; we are providing 5 classes this school term, 2 of those classes have been delivered during July.

The children have been shown many of the basics skills they will need for bringing their projects to life; the final 3 classes will be focussing on their project pieces. Even so far, they have produced some fantastic items - earrings, keyrings, bookmarks, coasters, to name but a few!


We were excited to be part of the show this year, we spoke to many wonderful people about the work we do; we are also so thankful to our volunteers that gave up their weekend to man the pitch with us.

As part of the show, we submitted some of our work to the arts and crafts competition. We were amazed and honoured to have placed 1st in both the embossing and useful item categories, as well as having our hair on hide bag selected as Best of Show.

Thank you to the judges, it really means a lot to us. We'll definitely be back next year with some more great items!



We have continued to make big improvements to our social media posts, which have generated even more engagement - the stats tell us we have improved upon out June totals, reaching over 11000 people in July!

Stay up to date with the latest at Bootstraps; be sure to like and follow us on socials.

Linktree is a one-stop-shop that signposts to all our socials, 500 Club members, and other important agencies. Click the banner or snap the QR code to try it today!


We are always looking to expand our network within the wider Veteran and Leatherwork communities.

We had the pleasure of being invited to Homefront Australia's 'Brews and Chews', a networking event for the Veteran community. As always, David, Sian and their team put on a fantastic event where we were able to make connections with people who we can help, and can help us with our valuable work.

We have continued collaborating with Mac-Lace Leather in Capalaba; Dan has delivered multiple belt and tooling classes in the last month for their customers. The benefits of this are far-reaching; it improves our relationship with one of our main suppliers, allows our instructors to deliver classes to a different client-base, in a different setting, and helps grow awareness of Bootstraps within SE QLD and beyond.

Such is the demand for classes, new team member Callum is already booked in to teach classes this month.



Our centre of operations, located in Gatton, Queensland, is open to all current and ex-military personnel,

and the local community, to drop in.

The centre is open Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9:00am - 4:00pm.

"Feel free to drop by to say hello and introduce yourself!"



As you might have noticed, Callum got a mention earlier.

Callum has recently joined the team, bringing with him years of leatherwork experience; his specialties are cosplay and medieval armour, which will add a whole new dimension to our collective skills.

Callum has started his Cert IV in Training and Education with TAFE in preparation for teaching in schools next year.

We are always welcoming new faces to volunteer their time, experience and skills. Without the tireless support of our volunteers, keeping Bootstraps going would be impossible. Regardless of your background or skillsets, every one of us can help to play a part. It doesn't need to be huge, it could be only a few hours a week through to a few days a week - really every little bit helps.

If you're in a position to offer some voluntary assistance to our organisation, then please reach out to us today by contacting us by phone 0480 239 994, or email

Also if you are in a position to assist us through monetary donations of any value, please visit our website and follow the link to:



For some of us, we're not ready to talk, as it means saying things out aloud reminds us of the issue; it may, however, be more comfortable to text how we're feeling.

As the classic song by Cold Chisel says "When the war is over, it's time to start again!" But for some of us that war internally is ongoing.

Here at Bootstraps we have all been in that situation and know what it feels like. Please remember if you need to talk you can drop in to our centre and say G'Day to some like minded folk

But for those other times, when you feel this way, know that there is support available via text on 0477 13 11 14 through Lifeline Text. They also have a live message service on their website, and a phone line 13 11 14.

This is a service openly available 24/7, and ran by Lifeline.

You can text them anything that's on your mind - no matter how overwhelming, they are there to listen. Just know, that there is someone there when you're ready!

Please feel free to share with your friends, families and colleagues!

Remember there is always someone willing to listen!


500 CLUB:

We are always so proud to promote all of our 500 Club Members that proudly support us!

The last few months, and now the last year, have been really difficult for many businesses and we want to take a moment to acknowledge the continued support of all of our 500 Club members. Despite their own struggles, our valued partners have stuck with us through their dedicated support. Please make sure that you support them however you can!

Every News Leather, we aim to showcase a new 500 Club member to thank them for their support, but also to let you know about the legends that support us!

This month we acknowledge Prowler Proof Brisbane; they are the best when it comes to security screens. Michael and the team are great, and they were more than willing to donate all of the security screens that have kept our Gatton centre secure for years; we can testify to the quality of their products.

Head over to their site to find top quality items that can keep your family and business safe.

Click the links to go to Prowler Proof's socials

Bootstraps is really proud to have its many supporters onboard as 500 Club members.

But to keep the centre marching along we're always looking for more businesses to become 500 Club members! If you too would like find out what's in it for your business, learn a bit more and show your support for our work, click below to discover how you can become a 500 CLUB MEMBER!

We even have our own hashtag, #500club; search for it on social media to find out the amazing things our members are doing.



They say that laughter is the best medicine... so here's you dose of giggles for this month's News Leather!


Each month we like to feature a Veteran owned business or place where veterans, their families and friends can spend time and enjoy life.

If you have, or know of a business or place, why not let us know so we can feature them here!



Here's the pick of the bunch from the custom projects that the team have been working on this month.

Both for the same customer; the wallet was bought, we used the LASER to personalise it with initials; the sheath was made from scratch - a custom piece for a custom blade.

We always welcome new faces to the centre, as well as familiar ones. If you'd like to create a unique leather piece yourself, why not visit our centre today, or contact us about class times; better still, why not take home an exclusive piece of leatherwork from our many items for sale in our display!


We look forward to bringing you more in next month's, News-Leather. But in the meantime, be sure to Like and Follow us on our socials to keep up to date with what's happening with Bootstraps!

We'd really love to hear what projects you'd like to do!

Go to our Linktree to submit an expression of interest for our classes, or a custom project.

Satchel, Handbag, Photo Album, Rifle Case, Tool Case,

Binoculars Case, or perhaps something more unique!

Remember to leave us your feedback or a comment on what you would like to make at our centre or have covered in future edition of our News-Leathers!

Thank you again to our 500 Club members - click the logos to visit their websites

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