The diversity within Cardinia Shire is quite astounding, not just in environment and people, but in our local businesses too. Bunyip Creations would have to be one of the most unique and delightful enterprises I’ve come across.
So what is Bunyip Creations and what makes it so unique? Founded by Michelle Van Der Vlugt, it’s a combination of Michelle’s philosophy, or mission – To create unique keepsakes of children’s experiences, while encouraging education and preservation of the beautiful world we live in – through their build your own book product, as well as by creating local employment opportunities and giving back to wildlife parks and conservation projects.
Bunyip Creations customers are able to create a personalised, animal based book by choosing the animals and sentences from a list that best represents them-self or their child. A link is emailed to the customer so they can download the PDF format. The customer can print and add photos and drawings before binding together.
The book contains animal facts and utilises a style of Victorian Cursive font similar to what is taught in the Australian education system. Children find the book interesting as their name can transfer into many of the sentences they select.
It’s a brilliant concept, and product.
Michelle has also seen many friends and other locals struggle in their return to employment after stretches of raising children.
I hear how difficult it can be to find work that fits into the “school hours” available to many parents. At the other end of the spectrum, many teenagers are leaving school with little experience to enter the workforce.
My hope is to be able to offer an opportunity for these people to get their foot in the door and gain some experience to boost their opportunities.
Currently, Michelle works with one local Virtual Assistant. Not only is she local, but their children go to school together. This has provided the Virtual Assistant a great opportunity for her to expand her skills while working during hours that suit her family. This has worked well for Bunyip Creations, as Michelle hasn’t had to do it all on her own and so far, they have been able to use their individual knowledge and skill sets to create engaging social media content and brainstorm promotions for the business.
While the support for wildlife parks and conservation projects is only just starting to gain momentum, various zoos and sanctuaries that feature their conservation projects are regularly shared to Bunyip Creations’ social media pages. Their Facebook and Instagram pages also
offer facts and information about fauna and flora from around the world.
Ultimately, Michelle’s goal is to use book sales to give a portion of their profits to the wildlife parks directly. Various competitions and codes that will promote this are coming, so keep your eyes on their social media! (All contact details below)
Bunyip Creations is entirely internet based. The book can be created any where in the world and can display any location. Perfect for tourists visiting a new country or a new animal park, and it’s been operational for a little over 4 months now. I can’t wait to see how it develops as the business grows, with plans for more animals, sentences, pages and other options already in the pipeline!
Growth is part of Michelle’s life, and her family’s, as she, her partner and three children all learn to deal with the increasing demand on the hours required by the business, but they are all very much on board with it – her children have even featured in some of the shots with the book, at places like Gumbuya World, and Zoos Victoria.
While there are other printable book offerings out there, most, however, just allow a name to be entered into a pre-written story, and often do not provide the factual sentences, or being self-printable. With Bunyip Creations, the customers choose the animals they want in the book and a relevant sentence to go with each. Their choice of name is transferred throughout the book depending on their selections.
AND, instead of receiving one solitary copy up to 6 weeks later by mail, the customer can print it as often as they like.