Bridget Ramunno – Relocator, Wife, Mother, Entrepreneur
Connecting with community and gaining an understanding of the issues that people face relocating to the Mid North Coast is part of our roll as an RDA.
As it becomes harder and prohibitively expensive to live a balanced and rewarding existence in our capital cites, more people are looking for a better life and moving to the Mid North Coast.
Through a series of interviews with those that are pulling the pin and moving to the region we are gaining an insight into what the region needs and what we have that the cities do not.
Our first interviewee for 2019 is Bridget Ramunno, who has recently located to the Nambucca Valley with her husband Nino, an ex – local and their family.
Name: Bridget Ramunno
Current Location: Hyland Park, NSW 2448
Previous location: Dover Heights, NSW 2030
What was the main motivation for moving to Mid North Coast?
We were seeking a more relaxed, affordable and balanced lifestyle for us and our family in a community minded region as the pace and cost of living in Sydney with a young family and limited family support there become untenable for us. There had to be a better and easier way to bring up and care for our children and a better quality of life for us as a family.
Given we spend a fair amount of time in the Mid North Coast each year and we have an amazing circle of friends and family there, the decision to move permanently here as a family with young children was an easy one.
Where were you living previously and for how long?
I had been living in Sydney since 2002, after returning from the UK on a two-year working holiday. Prior to heading to the UK, I lived in Adelaide where I was raised.
What was the main reason that you lived there?
Primarily due to job opportunities and the career path that Sydney offered in comparison to my hometown Adelaide. Plus, it was also a fun place to live as a single young professional at the time.
Was it a difficult decision to make, to leave?
No, it wasn’t. Once we had weighed up all of the options, evaluated the quality of our life we wanted but weren’t achieving in Sydney (despite earning good salaries); the lack of time we had together as a family and the day to day stress we both felt on a financial and personal level from living in Sydney, the decision was an easy one to re-locate.
When did you move here?
We moved here in September 2017.
Was family a motivating factor in the move?
Yes, the primary reason for our decision to re-locate was to bring up our family in a more relaxed and balanced lifestyle where we got to spend more time together whilst still maintaining a good quality of living.
From research we also knew that the quality and availability of education was not an issue in this region and its connectivity to the broader Australian key markets (i.e. Sydney / Melbourne) was only getting stronger for us on a professional level.
Since moving here what have you enjoyed about the local area?
Exploring this idyllic location from coastal areas to rivers to mountains as a family and easing into a more relaxed lifestyle where the prime focus is on family and more balanced way of living.
What have you missed from where you lived previously?
Not too much to be honest given the natural beauty and outdoor exploring opportunities on offer here. We have been welcomed in most forums and we are feeling completely at home here now after only a short time (18 months) after re-locating.
Given the frequency and reliability of flights out of Coffs and Port, we don’t feel cut off at all. We can easily head to Sydney, Brisbane or Melbourne for personal / business matters by either flying or driving (5 hours each way) as needed.
What do you feel is lacking in the local area?
On a work front, we are finding it difficult to connect into professional networks (recruiters, business forums etc) to understand opportunities in the area and to offer our assistance on a pro bono level to start to build a strong reputation here.
We do not have access to Centrelink etc like services given our professional experience and financial assets so, we have had to build and leverage our own networks which is taking longer than we’d hoped to get traction on a professional level.
A forum or web page where professionals who have recently re-located or are in the process of considering re-location could turn to and consult would be an excellent addition to further encourage and support professionals (with and without families) to more seamlessly migrate to this region.
Have you found a job, purchased a business or setup a business? How was this experience?
We in the process of setting up a business consulting and CFO on Demand business (Mutatio Business Solutions www.mutatio.com.au) which will take some time to take off whilst we connect into the local marketplace. Hence in the interim we are looking for employment opportunities. On this front we are finding it difficult for organisations look past our experience, which has predominantly been in financial services, and see our underlying capabilities and skillsets which are just as applicable, and value add in the government and NFP sector as in private enterprise. We hope to gradually break down these barriers and find the right employment opportunity for each of us in the region.
Anything else you would like to add about your experience relocating to the Mid North Coast?
We can not over emphasise how much more relaxed and happier we are as a family and as partners since re-locating to the Mid North Coast. Yes, the region provides great value for money from a housing affordability and daily living perspective, but its real value lies in the community minded spirit and more balanced, laid back lifestyle it has on offer.