When CultureBaby stumbled upon a little site called All Abroad Baby not so long ago, sparks flew! It was a meeting of the minds, a melding of the souls.....it was pretty cool anyway. There is nothing better than finding a kindred spirit. Rachael, Founder of All Abroad Baby, believes fervently as we do in raising global citizens and offering parents exposure to all the tools that can help them do it. Offering travel, cooking and lifestyle tips on the fresh and red hot layout at AAB, Rachael never fails to inspire us to keep up the good work in style. We had to stop and ask her more about why it all matters so much to her. We're so glad she decided to be our July Mom!
Where do you live now and with whom?
In Sydney, Australia, with my husband and our two toddlers.
Tell us about the genesis of All Abroad Baby...why was it important to you to involve your kids in travel and culture?
An appreciation of diversity is such an important gift to give children. If our little ones grow up celebrating difference rather than fearing it, then our world will have a much better chance of being a peaceful one! Travel is the most authentic way for children to experience other cultures first-hand. And the younger the better because they will grow up with diversity being a normality! This article about why we should travel with our children couldn’t have put it any better.
Is raising global citizens important to you?
Absolutely. It’s glaringly obvious that many of the problems in our world stem from an intolerance of those who hold different opinions. I hope to raise my little ones to be global citizens who are willing to embrace and learn from difference, rather than believe that they are superior or inferior to others simply because they are different.
Do you travel with your kids often?
I remember being seven, eight, nine years old, and my understanding of ‘far away’ was the drive to the big shopping centre 20 minutes away! In terms of this kind of travel, yes, we’re out and about several times a week. As for mum and dad’s definition of ‘travel’, we do several (maybe three or four) weekends away/trips within Australia, and usually one trip abroad each year.
How do you weigh the difficulties of travel with kids against the benefits?
For us, most of the time it’s easier than being at home – strangely! I do think that routine is important for children, especially young children. But I think our kids have inherited our love of travel – they often sleep better when we’re traveling, and they’re more accepting of new foods. Sometimes I think the only ‘routine’ children need is constant love. As long as they have this then they’ll be willing to try new things and step out of their comfort zones.
How do you practice global citizenship at home? What sorts of cultural/food/travel events or opportunities are available nearby?
Our little ones are 18 months and three years old, so they’re still at ages when the word ‘global’ is an abstract concept. But for my husband and I, global citizenship is about bringing our kids up trying food beyond bangers and mash; it’s about playing with children from all different backgrounds and cultures, and it’s about music that exposes them to more than The Wheels on the Bus and If You’re Happy And You Know It. Sydney has lots to offer ‘global families’, if you’re this way inclined then you’ll find those events and opportunities.
Do you have a favorite CultureBaby product?
Can I choose three? I can’t decide!
OK, I think Zid Zid Kids’ Moroccan poufs. My son has one of their square poufs with an elephant applique (which I bought before he was even born!).
The Indian collection of onesies – enough to make me want a third baby!
And the Children Inspire Design My Roots wall art – such a unique idea and buying one of these supports an inspiring designer who does wonderful things for disadvantaged children in Africa.