Home > Local Church News > Chasing sheep for outback links

Chasing sheep for outback links

 Keith Nutley dreams of heading back out West. Photo courtesy of Frontier Services

WHEN KEITH Nutley retired he decided to put his talents to good use.

That’s how he found himself chasing sheep in the Outback.

“I really enjoy it.

Sometimes it can be really fun.

Particularly mustering sheep in gully country,” said Mr Nutley.

“You can be chasing them on your motorbike across paddocks that are as rough as anything and suddenly have to stop in front of a 6ft gully.

“You have to learn real quick how to move them or you have them everywhere.”

The 66-year-old has developed a knack for mustering sheep, cattle and even wild goats as a volunteer with the Frontier
Services’ Outback Links program.

Frontier Services has provided services to people who live in isolated or remote regions of Australia for nearly 100 years.

Mr Nutley has volunteered nine times with the program that supports families living in remote Queensland.

His role is to provide an extra set of hands around the property to help families who need assistance for a short period of

Mr Nutley, a member of the Beenleigh Regional Uniting Church, has assisted families with many tasks including fencing,
fixing windmills, house repairs, laying tiles, feeding animals and helping out in the shearing sheds.

He is often a caretaker for families who are away from their property and cannot leave it unoccupied.

“People out there are very friendly. They appreciate everything you do, no matter how much or how little it is,” said Mr

After Mr Nutley retired he wanted to use the talents God had given him to help other people.

“I feel that’s what God wanted me to do,” he said.

“It gives me great enjoyment and keeps me out of mischief.”

On two of his trips Mr Nutley’s wife Erica has joined him.

They have spent the past two Christmases lending a hand to a family in the middle of Queensland.

It is an experience he recommends to others.

“Go and do it.

It’s interesting, people are always friendly and they really look after you.

They appreciate that you come and help.”

Outback Links places volunteers with all kinds of skills.

Participants have included trades people, nurses, teachers, speech pathologists, retired people, and backpackers.

The Outback Links website has a list of more than 50 volunteering opportunities across Australia.

For more information click here or phone 1300 731 349

Photo : Keith Nutley dreams of heading back out West. Photo courtesy of Frontier Services