An appeal to my AU Travel Industry friends

Today I'd like to highlight something unique and very special that's on offer for someone that we need your help to find.

Richard Taylor, Founder of The Travel Community Hub and Director of Membership Experience at AFTA

Got an opinion to share? Let us know in up to 400 words via email to [email protected]

Have you ever had a mentor during your career?

Chances are that you haven’t, or at least not officially anyway. Whilst we’ve all had people that have offered us advice or guidance along the way, it’s only relatively recently that officially designating someone a ‘mentor’ has been a ‘thing’. 

Before I continue, the reason I’m here is to ask for your help – yes, you! – in finding a particular someone for whom a unique opportunity exists.

It has been eleven years since Penny Spencer founded TIME – the Travel Industry Mentor Experience for anyone new to the industry – and since then almost 350 mentees of all ages and types have graduated from the program. Their mentors have made a positive impact not simply on their travel careers but, in so many cases, on their entire outlook on life itself.

Of those 350 a good number were scholarships funded by generous industry companies and in some cases by kind-hearted individuals, and applications for these are always popular.

But a new, groundbreaking scholarship is currently on offer that is going to need the wider travel community to help locate the right person.

It will be funded by Cocky Guides, a social enterprise that provides multi-sensory adventures for the blind and low-vision community as well as dedicated tours with an interpreter for deaf travellers or those that sign.

This unique scholarship is aimed squarely and exclusively at somebody in travel who either has a disability themselves or who can demonstrate a passion for advancing accessible travel within the industry.  

And here’s where TIME needs help. You are probably reading this thinking that you don’t know anyone suitable yourself, and so aside from requesting you ‘ask around’ I’d also be delighted if you’d put social media to a good use by ‘liking’ or even re-sharing a post I’ve made on this subject on LinkedIn this morning. By doing so you’ll help expand its reach and boost its chances of being seen by a special someone. That post is HERE.

While I have you, follow TIME itself HERE so that you’ll see these things in future, and if you do know someone potentially suitable they can read more details about the scholarship HERE.

Having a little experience in this area myself, the potential mentee may need a little cajoling into finding out more. In their own time they’re welcome to contact Marie at TIME via [email protected] or via phone on 02 8411 1506 , or indeed contact one of us on the committee. Applications are closing at the end of May

This scholarship could be something magical for someone, but we need to find them! I hope you’ll help spread the word. 

Richard Taylor is a travel industry connector, event organiser, webinar and podcast host, MC and community builder. He founded The Travel Community Hub in March 2o2o and in January 2023 he also began work with AFTA, the Australian Federation of Travel Agents, as Director of Membership Experience. For more of Richard’s commentary, head to to subscribe to his newsletter and industry podcast, Offloaded.
Richard is also very proud to be a committee member of TIME (the Travel Industry Mentor Experience), a not-for-profit company that helps aspiring leaders of the Travel and Tourism industries accelerate their careers through mentoring.

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