Single mum Jules is a free spirit, full of life and a real earth mother. Jules has four kids: two sons, Jay and Ishy (16 & 17), and daughters Elisha (21) and India (18). Her family is a blend of her own, adopted and foster children. Over the past 12 years Jules has had 29 foster children. It is her firm belief that cooking and food has been the fundamental healing tool for the children in her care.
After acquiring a degree in Social Science while the children were young, Jules worked for 9 years, largely in Child Protection and with teenagers in Crisis. Following this she was appointed school counsellor in a large K-12 school where she continued her work with children and families. In 2010 she moved in to private practice where she primarily worked with teenagers in crisis and their families. She was admired and recognized for her holistic and compassionate approach and, as a consequence, was awarded the Byron Community ‘Working with Young People’s award in 2012. It was during this time in 2008 that Jules also founded her own charity “Women and Children’s Care Initiative’ and was fundamental in the building of a Women and Children’s refuge in the Solomon Islands in 2009.
Life took an unpredictable turn in 2013 when she was accepted as a contestant on MasterChef. As mentioned earlier her love of food as a fundamental tool for a functioning family has been paramount throughout her life. As challenging as this process was it cemented her belief in the continuation of her service and charity work.
Jules has used her profile to raise awareness around matters of importance. She is ambassador for ‘Adopt Change’ with Deborah Lee- Furness and Hugh Jackman. She is also ambassador for Foster Care Australia and Meals on Wheels. She has recently launched a therapeutic tea line which donates its profits to reputable charities. After a recent visit to Cambodia she is also working tirelessly to raise awareness around gross human rights atrocities experienced by young people being trafficked.
It is Jules’s hope that through public speaking she can influence change in the lives of those in need, whether here or abroad.
Resilience - don’t lower the bar, move the goal posts
How to become resilient, raise resilience and maintain resilience in an increasingly diverse and adverse world.
It’s not what you do for your children, but what you have taught them to do for themselves that will make them successful human beings.
Youth suicide is killing more young Australians than anything else and self harm is bordering on an epidemic. With this in mind, one can’t help but wonder what part resilience or lack of it, is playing in our current environment. We seem to be a population struggling to find the tools to overcome the myriad of challenges facing us in this ever changing ethos.
Why have our youth lost their ability to strive, thrive, and to bounce back. Where is their fight to survive?
Teens - don’t take it personally
Teens don’t behave the way they do to affect us. They behave the way they do because of what is going on for them!
Their behavior, whether we like it or not, is the clearest insight we have in to what is going on for them. Their words can, at times, be confusing and misleading but their actions never lie. It’s not about us, it’s about what’s going on for them. Always!
Connection is the absolute key to keeping your child safe and raising a well balanced teenager. This is easier said than done when they seem to be pushing you away. It’s really a matter of separating out the behaviour from the child; not always easy.
How to make your biggest challenges in life your greatest assets
We don’t always have a say over what it is that we experience in life. How do we take all of our experiences, good or bad, and turn them in to an asset.
In a current climate where the youth suicide rate is at it’s highest and self harm is bordering on an epidemic, it’s fair to say that our youth are largely ill-equipped to deal with the multitude of challenges they face. Broadly speaking, young people seem overwhelmed by the issues confronting them and lack the skills and tools required to overcome adversity.
Trials and challenges in life make up the fabric of who we are and the more experiences we have, good or bad, the richer the fabric. It’s not what happens to us in life that defines us, it’s what we do with it.
Food - love in action
One of the greatest issues affecting our young people today is a lack of a sense of belonging. Food is the greatest weapon in tackling this core issue. The trickle down affect is, more often than not, beyond comprehension.
There is no greater healing tool than food. It has stood the test of time. It affects our well being on every level from physical to emotional health. It taps in to all the senses and, as a consequence, affects our neural pathways.
As parents, we have three times a day that we can stay connected to our children, through food. It’s not just about what you feed your child, it’s the way in which it is done. It is the greatest and most consistent expression of love.
If wielded well, it can combat a myriad of issues affecting your young person.
The kitchen being the heart of your home is, by far, the greatest way to impart on your children a strong sense of their place in the world. It is the greatest way to stay connected at a time when dialogue is sometimes missing.
You could hear a pin drop – for the entire time of Jule’s presentation. Students, staff and parents alike were deeply connected to her and the content of her presentation. Many have also commented that Jules immediately established a personal connection to the students from our school. She was very “human and real with them” her link was authentic.
Phoenix P-12 Community School
Jules Allen was a captivating guest speaker for our recent “Life is a Roller Coaster” event. Jules connected with the audiences on their level, which ranged from students Yr. 8-12 to adults, which made them open to actually accepting and retaining her message. Jules used the power of life experiences to illustrate her points which the audience respected the fact that she wasn’t perfect. Jules was very down to earth and took the time to answer questions and then after each presentation circulate with the audience.
Cleve & District Mental Health & Wellbeing Group
Jules was spot on with her talk and the way she related to the audience. It was a very powerful time and deeply impacted much of the audience.