Little Brothers reunite in Adelaide

From left: Steve Noble (Strathnaver ’55), Roger Putnam (Escort Officer – Himalaya ’66), David Moss (Ranchi ’52), Cliff Arnold (New Australia ’52), John Kenna (Air ’68), Leighton Smith (New Australia ’50), John Harding (Ranchi ’52), Dick Steell (Fairsea ’63), Trevor Peart (Himalaya ’66) and Geoff Eastwood (Orontes ’59)


On the 16th of October, ten South Australian Little Brothers got together for afternoon tea in Adelaide. Trevor Peart (Himalaya ’66) was joined by his Escort Officer, Roger Putnam, and eight other Little Brothers whose ships arrived between 1950 (Leighton Smith, New Australia) and 1968 (John Kenna, Air), including David Moss and John Harding who both came out on the Ranchi in 1952.

Geoff Eastwood arrived in 1959 aged 18. The apprentice fitter and turner first worked on farms near Sydney and in rural Australia. He later became a pilot, then a cattle farmer and, after a period of living on a government pension, now owns the Goolwa Airport and four planes.

Geoff’s fascinating story is just one example of the extraordinary journeys that connected these Little Brothers. Each of those young lads who came out here as teenagers have their own incredible tales to tell. Trevor Peart organised the reunion for Little Brothers in South Australia to reconnect and share their stories. While each person’s experience is different, for many it was the adventure of a lifetime.

Connecting Generations

On this occasion, one of the BBM Youth Support awardees joined the reunion. Dayna Grey spoke about her overseas experience in agriculture and she was intrigued by the rich history of the Big Brother Movement. Dayna travelled to the UK in 2018 to expand her industry knowledge in agriculture. Sharing her experience of travelling overseas at a young age to work on the land resonated with many of the Little Brothers in the room. In turn, so did the stories that the Little Brothers shared with her. Although Dayna and the Little Brothers were two generations apart and started their journeys from the opposite ends of the planet, they each discovered that their experiences were not as dissimilar as you may think.

In fact, the young Australians who receive the BBM Youth Support Awards each year do so on the shoulders of the Little Brothers. It is the heritage of the Big Brother Movement and the inheritance of this first great endeavour that lives on in the awards and the opportunities they create.

Then and now, our mission remains the same – to enable young people to embark on a life-changing journey and see them create opportunities for themselves and others, building a better future for Australia.

Get in touch and reconnect

The Big Brother Movement still holds the record cards of over 9,000 Little Brothers. Around the country Little Brothers are organising their own reunions and supplied with records and other memorabilia from the Sydney office. There have been reunions in Queensland, Western Australia, New South Wales and Victoria. The next one will be in the Riverina in February / March 2019.

Are you a Little Brother and would like to reconnect? Please get in touch!


25th October, 2018

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