BOSS BABE: MARLEY MORGAN
Marley Morgan is a part of the not for profit organisation, Happy Boxes, which aims to provide women in the community with access to every-day items like deodorant, shampoo and toothbrushes (that we take for granted). The Happy Boxes project also aims to provide opportunities to alleviate barriers to accessing basic needs and to build capacity for individual and community development.
The Happy Boxes Project is close to Marley’s heart as she comes from a remote community herself. Marley is a strong Wiradjuri/ Yuwaalaraay woman and a small creative business owner, she has embraced the opportunity to give back to her own community.
Marley is also the photographer behind Barefoot Wandering Photography – her style is soft, earthy and evocative, reflecting her personality and deep connection to country and culture.
We would like to acknowledge the Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and recognise their continual connection to land, waters and culture. We pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging.
Can you please tell us about what the Happy Boxes Project is?
Women in our own backyard are going without basic toiletries. Accessibility to simple items like deodorant, shampoo and soap prove challenging when the closest store can be up to 1000km away. Some communities are at the end of 750km of harsh, red dirt roads. Others can be cut off by floodwaters for months at a time. Some are only accessible via boat or plane. Some communities may be lucky enough to have a small store, but the prices of basic items are exuberant. 19% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are living in unacceptable living standards due to overcrowded housing and structural faults. The target released by the government in the recent Close the Gap Agreement is to ensure 88% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are living in housing of an acceptable standard by 2031. Whilst this would be an improvement, it still will not be on par with non-Indigenous people. Meanwhile, there was no mention of the cost of living in remote communities nor any plan to further subsidise basic groceries so that people can afford to shop for their families in their community. We believe this is unacceptable! We want to send as many Happy Boxes filled with self-care products as possible. To provide women, regardless of their location and situation, the enjoyment of life’s little luxuries that we regularly take for granted.
Tell us about your childhood growing up in Lightning Ridge, a remote country town?
Growing up in Lightning Ridge was incredible. Living remote in a small town really teaches you how to use your imagination and make the most of the small things. Lightning Ridge has the most amazing and supportive community and I am so proud to come from there.
You are a photographer by trade, when did you first pick up a camera?
I have always had an interest in photography. My first camera was an izone which is a small polaroid camera which was popular in the 90’s. I have always had some form of camera, be it a disposable camera or the camera on my phone. I started taking photography more seriously around 3 years ago
What’s the best part of your job?
The wonderful people I get to meet and the locations I get to visit.
Can you tell us about your career journey so far – and what made you want to become a part of the Happy Boxes Project?
My journey has been challenging but rewarding. There have been many occasions I have felt like giving up but I am so happy I have stuck it out. I joined Happy Boxes because I understand how difficult it can be accessing basic everyday needs when living remote. I want to be able to help any way I can; to help out sisters to be able to have access to these needs
How can our audience support The Happy Boxes Project?
By donating a Happy Box of your own with some goodies such as shampoo, soap, toothbrushes, etc or donate.
You can find more information on putting together a box on the Happy Boxes website:
What does your day-to-day look like?
I am a mother of two boys aged 4 and 2 and I am currently expecting my 3rd child so my days have been a little exhausting lately, to say the least. My days usually consist of shooting on location or editing at home with a little person on my lap. Juggling work with motherhood can be difficult but my little people keep me motivated to do better and be better.
The modern world is a busy one! What is your version of self-care?
Self-care to me is switching off and just enjoying being in the moment, nourishing my body with a well-balanced diet and getting in some me-time when I get the chance.
What three things would we always find in your beauty bag?
Rosehip oil for my growing belly and dry skin, paw-paw ointment and tinted moisturiser.
If you could have any five women sitting around a dinner table with you, who would they be and why?
I would love to meet our Happy Boxes Project recipients. These are the young ladies who inspire me.
Regardless of living remote and lack of resources our ladies are killing it and I am so proud of them.
What's the last song you listened to?
BTS – Dynamite, it’s the perfect song to get you moving
Parting words of advice for being a #bossbabe in work and life?
There is light at the end of the tunnel. Regardless of how hard life may seem at times, please do not give up. It does get better.