Jen Stroh, Naturopath

Hi everyone,

I am honoured to be invited to represent IPHA as the next President. I feel proud to be involved in this organisation that clearly demonstrates a commitment to genuine care and quality education & research pertaining to indigenous plant species. I also appreciate the inclusive and supportive environment that all participants in this Association may enjoy.

I have been a member of IPHA for about 2 years enjoying some COVID lockdown time contributing to the Knowledge Cards project. Travel to Field days has been elusive, being firstly Victorian and secondly not trusting our caravan skills through floods in NSW.

Finally we made it to the stunning Foxbar Falls Qld Field days Nov 2022. I love the hands-on aspect of discovery and learning and interacting. What a sterling crew you all are, so much organising and camaraderie and good fun! Thankyou for all this and more.

Now we have relocated to Fraser (K’gari) Coast near Hervey Bay, Badtjala Country, SE Qld I hope to attend more workshops and field days with IPHA. John & I are now blessed with custodianship of 5 acres, part cleared with house and garden and part original bush comprising mainly Melaleuca quinquenervia (Broad leaved Paperbark) with a few regal Corymbia intermedia (pink bloodwood), Corymbia trachyphloia (brown/yellow bloodwood), Angophora leiocarpa (Smooth leaved Apple), Eucalyptus latisinensis (white mahogany – specific to this Wide Bay region), Alphitonia excelsa (soap tree) plus numerous pioneer species, ground covers and wild flowers and plenty of critters.

Clinically, I had always been impressed with Andrew Pengelly’s book in the 90’s which added insight to my learnings after studying Naturopathy at SSNT(Vic) in the early 80’s. I still have some of Andrew’s original ‘Australian Wild Herb Bulletins’ from 1999. Learning Western Medical Herbalism in the 80’s highlighted to me how little we knew about our own backyard foods and medicinals. So I explored many Australian bush tucker and medicine books of the day and learned from local Wurundjeri people, Beth Gott (a brilliant Botanist and friend of Aboriginal peoples), Bev Lane (wizened herbalist and teacher) and others.

I’ve been a clinical Naturopath for over 40 years using some home grown and made products as well as commercially produced. Growing and showing a prolific garden in Monbulk (Vic) was a wonderful way to engage students, patients and the general public in the sensate experience of herbal medicines. Living near the beautiful forests of the Dandenong Ranges had me research further afield and engage the public in walks and talks, understanding weed ways and native plant uses.

I’ve just resigned as President/Secretary/Treasurer of a local Table Tennis Association (Club) I founded in 2014. So I have some understanding of the requirements of running a not-for-profit Incorporated Association. I have great confidence in the current IPHA Committee and am grateful to feel supported by them.

I look forward to meeting you all in some way or another over time. Thankyou for continuing to support this worthwhile endeavour.

Jen sees the IPHA as a great platform to help protect, promote and cherish Australian plants as well
as engage with Aboriginal groups in sharing knowledge systems. May we all continue to care and
connect to country.

Integrity Health, Inc.