Our Chief Visionary Officer Lynne Strong is a committed life long learner and recently participated is a series of opportunities provided by McKinsey for CEO’s of charities and met McKinsey Business Analyst Reynolds Tang-Smith as part of her journey. As you can see from Reynold’s goals at the bottom of this post he see the interconnectedness of our wellbeing with our ability to nurture our soil and grow nutritious, safe, affordable food and he wants to be part of the grass roots movement creating a better world together.
To start this process Reynolds is joining our team in 2022 as our intern and in todays blog he shares with you his hopes and dreams……….
Reynolds and his partner (Jo) holding an oyster mushroom they grew!
Australia is beautiful.
In fact, the entire world is and we should keep it that way.
For ourselves, our children and future generations that we will never know.
The realisation that we are so blessed to experience human consciousness and life on this planet is one that I try to remind myself of every day.
I hope this blog post revives that feeling of wonder and awe for the world in you!
This is a picture of Karijini National Park (Pilbara, WA), a place dear to my heart and a quote from one of my favourite stoic philosophers, Seneca.
“True happiness is to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future, not to amuse ourselves with either hopes or fears but to rest satisfied with what we have, which is sufficient, for he that is so, wants nothing.” – Seneca
Awesome quote hey?
Who am I?
My story begins in Perth, Western Australia; an isolated yet amazing city.
Many of my values originate from my Mum who immigrated from Beijing about 30 years ago. She had a tough childhood as did many others in China in the 1960s with famine and sociopolitical turmoil.
From an early age, she ingrained in my brothers and I the principle of not taking things for granted.
We ate what we were given and did not waste food. Anything leftover was given to the hens or buried in our compost bin by our backyard veggie patch.
My Mum was also a teacher and ran a Kumon tutoring centre which I helped manage. From this I understood deeply how powerful education is to empower future generations!
I studied Economics and Physiology (pre-med) at the University of Western Australia (UWA) and like any aspiring doctor, sat the GAMSAT and happily volunteered at hospitals, charities and research centers.
My dream for a long time had been to study medicine (and I still might later in life) but I realised that I could make scalable impact in healthcare by leveraging entrepreneurship and technology.
Three important experiences helped me understand the above:
- My exchange program in the USA at the University of Notre Dame (Indiana) where I worked on a hospital optimisation case competiton and a ‘value-based care’ health insurance project (2019).
- Worked as a Cardiac Physiologist where I gained insight into heart disease, the world’s biggest killer. There, I realised how little our healthcare system focused on wholistic and preventative care as ‘poor nutrition and lifestyle’ were neglected, and patients were given mainly bandaid solutions (2020).
- Interned at Perx Health, a digital healthcare tech startup in Sydney which gamifies healthcare with personalised behavioural science and rewards chronic patients with gift cards for forming healthy habits (2020-21).
How Not to Die email
I often emailed or printed off the first 42 pages of this book for my patients, which included the 1st Chapter – How Not To Die from Heart Disease. After coming across this book, I realised food and by extension agriculture was the big puzzle piece that was missing from modern healthcare.
When I mention healthcare, I also extend the definition to the ‘health of the planet’, which includes our plant, soil, water, fungi, animal, family, community, mental, financial, and spiritual health.
Therefore, my aim is to become a wholistic doctor where I can help myself and people live more sustainably with the Earth. A huge and underrated part of this are our agricultural food systems.
Presently, I work at management consulting Firm, McKinsey as Business Analyst where we help create positive enduring change in the world by solving problems for large companies, governments and NGOs.
I helped facilitate the Mission Delivery CEO workshop in March 2022, where I was grateful to meet Lynne Strong along with 200+ other amazing CEOs from NFPs across the country.
I have a few goals for my future with this lovely organisation and beyond:
- Maximise the good on Earth by helping people find their ‘ikigai’ philosophy
- Accelerate agritech (AI, microbial, blockchain, zero-carbon) uptake and education
- Learn best practices in regenerative agriculture and reduce reliance on fertilisers
- Help restore the soil in Australia to increase food nutrition and decrease CO2 in the atmosphere
- Establish mushroom microfarms (e.g., lions mane, reishi) in the cities to reduce disease burden (Alzheimer’s, depression, immune disorders)
- Incentivise Australians to change our unhealthy consumer eating habits (processed foods) and support local farmers
- Build a sustainable high-tech farm for my future family one day
This is a great philosophy that everyone can relate to; let’s all help each other find our ikigai!
The Veggie patch