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Our Team

Monique Farmer – Founder & Trip Leader

Women Want Adventure is founded by Monique Farmer, a University Qualified Personal Development, Health and Physical Education Teacher - specialising in Outdoor Education.

Before Monique founded Women Want Adventure, she could be found hiking and kayaking in Australia's National Parks and overseas destinations. Monique has dedicated her adventures to experience new places, try new things and push personal boundaries, something she believes and inspires other women to do through outdoor adventure.

Growing up next door to The Royal National Park in Sydney, Monique had a natural inclination towards the mountains and sea. She was drawn to how nature can help inspire people to feel their best. Something she wanted to share with others.

Today, everything Monique continues to create and empower is an extension of her love for the outdoors and the benefits this lifestyle brings – including inspiring women to create meaningful experiences through adventure and community.

Her general love for life and passion to build community of like-minded adventure women has her actively involved in leading trips, laughing in a tent with a group of women in unexpected wet weather, giving away her last wet wipe and sharing her famous Anzac hiking biscuits.

Monique is qualified in Outdoor Recreation, Wilderness First Aid, Canoe Flat Water Guiding and CPR.

Connect: facebook  instagram  twitter  email 
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Leah Benintendi – NSW Trip Leader

Leah is a born and bred Sutherland Shire girl and has always lived an active life playing sports and enjoying the great outdoors.

Her thirst for adventure grew after completing her studies in Events Management and, after her first 3 month backpacking trip in USA at the age of 21, she spent the rest of her 20s working for not-for-profits in between backpacking trips around Central America, Europe and South America.

Leah has always been happiest and at ease in the outdoors and her most memorable moments in life always involve the natural world. She has hiked the O Circuit in Torres Del Paine National Park, walked the beautiful paths of Cinque Terra in Italy, hiked the Larapinta Trail in NT, participated in a 100km Endurance event in the Blue Mountains and swam with Whale Sharks in Ningaloo Reef.

Now as a mum to a toddler and a bub, Leah loves nothing more than spending slow weekends in the Royal National Park hiking and exploring. Leah wants to encourage mums with bubs to hike outside together, be inspired by the outdoors and support each other through motherhood. 

Leah is qualified in Wilderness First Aid and Women Want Adventure Trip Training.

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Lisa Barnes – VIC Trip Leader

Lisa Barnes is a Mt Evelyn local who grew up surrounded by the beautiful bushland of the Yarra Valley, Victoria. An active upbringing sparked a passion for recreating in the great outdoors which she continued to pursue a career in. For the past 10 years she has worked in school camps providing groups from diverse backgrounds with adventurous experiences that develop positive connections between self, others and the natural environment. To further develop her skills, she has completed a Certificate III in Outdoor Recreation and Travel Tourism alongside her First Aid training and Diploma of Business Management.

Lisa enjoys making the most of what is in her own backyard, completing Victorian hikes such as Wilson’s Promontory, The Great Ocean Walk and Cathedral Ranges. She also enjoys travelling and taking any opportunity to explore somewhere new. Further afield she has completed the Overland Track Tasmania and more recently completed the Inca Trail, Peru which was a lifelong dream.

Through her career Lisa has been able to see the positive impact outdoor adventures have on personal and social development. She strongly believes that outdoor recreation has a role to play in supporting women’s health by providing opportunities for women to push their boundaries, try new things and conquer challenges. In her spare time Lisa enjoys spending time outside with her dog, reading and catching up with friends.

Lisa is qualified in Outdoor Recreation, Wilderness First Aid and CPR.

Tracy Gibson – NSW/ACT Trip Leader

Tracy Gibson has been leading Outdoor Education and Kayaking Programs in Australia and around the world for over fifteen years. Her love of the water and all things outdoors lead her to pursuing a professional career as a Kayak Instructor and undertaking many personal expeditions to places like Canada, New Zealand, Croatia, Italy, Austria and the Arctic. Tracy says it's the sense of freedom that kayaking provides plus the endless variety in what you will experience in a day of outdoor adventure that is so exciting, challenging and rewarding and has a way of changing the way you look at the world, engage with people and appreciate what our natural environment has to offer us as a teacher. Working now also in Tourism for the Shoalhaven Region, she is so passionate about sharing her love of all things outdoors to encourage women to try something new, open up what is possible and enjoy more time for adventures big and small! So whether its kayaking, hiking, canyoning or just enjoying a good laugh around a cuppa Tracy will ensure you get the most fun out of your day of exploration!

Tracy is a Paddle Australia certified Kayak Instructor/Assessor and has competed for Australia in Surf Kayaking winning the Womens World HP Title in 2013. She was also awarded Instructor of the year by Paddle Australia in 2018. Tracy is qualified in Outdoor Recreation, Water Rescue, First Aid and CPR.

Connect: facebook  website  email 

Sue Thodey – NSW Trip Leader 

Sue is a University trained PDHPE teacher who has always had a passion for the outdoors.

In her younger days she Heliskied in Canada, rafter the Franklin River in Tasmania (to protest the Franklin Gordon damming – we won!) sailed the Whitsundays and tackled numerous canyons in the Blue Mountains.

She was a Duke of Edinburgh Coordinator for 15 years at St George Girls High School inspiring hundreds of girls to complete their Bronze Silver and Gold awards.

In recent times she has hiked the entire Great North Walk  in NSW, the Overland Track in Tasmania, the Route Burn, Milford and Queen Charlotte Sound tracks in NZ, the Inca Trail in Peru and the Camino de Santiago de Compostela in Spain. She has also Kayaked Hinchinbrook Island and the Yasawas in Fiji and looks forward to walking across England in the near future.

Sue lives in Cronulla and enjoys Ocean Swimming daily, as well as walks with her lovely pooch Toby and spending time with her tiny grandchildren.

Sue loves to see people enjoying themselves and firmly believes that outdoor adventures such as hiking, swimming, paddling, canyoning, skiing, sailing, bicycling and camping create joy and freedom in people like nothing else can. Spending time with friends and family enjoying the outdoors is one of the greatest joys of her life.

You will find Sue leading the Camino Trail trip, Hinchinbrook Island Kayaking Trips and many of the NSW day walks.

Sue is qualified in Wilderness First Aid and CPR. 

Connect: email 

Andrea Whitelaw – NSW Trip Leader

Andrea Whitelaw, a Wollongong local, currently undertakes a degree in Maths Education at UOW, and has always had a passion for keeping active. 
She studied classical ballet for 10 years, training and competing internationally before completing her HSC in 2015. 
In finding new ways to keep fit, Andrea developed a great appreciation for the outdoors and has met many women of all ages who share this passion. She has undertaken multi-day hikes in New Zealand, Tasmania, and the Blue Mountains, and in 2017 completed a long distance, high altitude trek in Peru with an all-female group.
Although trekking overseas is always on her bucketlist, Andrea is most at home on the trails of the RNP and Illawarra escarpment. When she's not traipsing around the bush, Andrea is curled up with her cat and a good book. Empowering other women to have fun and get out of their comfort zone is something Andrea is incredibly passionate about, and being a leader for Women Want Adventure allows her to do just that.
Andrea is the Wollongong Community Leader. You will find her leading many NSW South Coast Trips. Be sure to say hello and look out for her tasty home baked treats on hikes she hosts. 
Andrea is qualified in Wilderness First Aid, CPR and has undertaken Women Want Adventure Leadership and Trek Training. 
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