Celebrating International Women's Day 2024

Sunday 25 February 2024

Interview with Chloe Drogemuller-Fiebig - Brave for Dave

Celebrating International Women's Day 2024 image

Tell us about yourself Chloe:

I was born and raised in Barmera, South Australia. This is a small country town 2.5 hours from Adelaide. A beautiful town on the Murray River where most of our childhood was spent on the lake swimming and knee boarding. I am one of four children, so life was quite busy. My parents allowed us every opportunity to find our passion, for that I am grateful.

Once I finished year 12, I moved to Adelaide at age 17 to play Netball. I had a scholarship with the South Australian Sports Institute (SASI) and played for three years, although the majority of my time I was sidelined following two knee reconstructions. Honored with vice captaincy and selected in the youth leadership program across all sports I was also awarded SASI country athlete of the year in 2005. Following my time at SASI, I went on to play for the Garville Netball Club a was captain of the Premier League squad for three years having played over 125 Premier League Games. I lived by myself in a small unit at West Beach. I trained and played most days of the week, studied full time at Flinders University and worked two jobs.

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In 2010 I met Dave, the love of my life. We were lucky enough to travel through the U.S and Europe, our favourite place being the Amalfi Coast/Capri. We lived a life of contentment and although we loved travelling (overseas and back to the country) we loved being at home. In 2016 we were married, I felt so lucky to call this man my husband. Two years later we welcomed our first son, Duke to the world and Banks, our second in 2021. What a time for our little family! Life was easy and we felt so grateful for what we had experience in this life and were excited with what the future held for us. Sadly in 2022, Dave, husband and father to my sons passed away from brain cancer.

I have always been a resilient individual and pride myself on my drive and tenacity to do better for myself and those around me. At some point in life you have either been through a storm, going through one or there is one coming. How do you prepare? You just can’t, but what you can do is create a foundation that allows for adaptability, patience and openness.

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I feel honoured to raise and guide my sons in this crazy life. They bring me so much love and I hope that I can be a good role model for them.

What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

Acknowledging the impact that women make in society. Acknowledgement for leaders and changemakers but also the women who work away quietly to build a better life for themselves, their families and others.

Describe your career path?

From a young age my focus was to play professional netball, from age 16 I had a scholarship with the South Australian Sports Institute for Netball. I moved to Adelaide when I was 17 and I leant back into study whilst I was injured for two years. I have a Bachelors of Health Science, majoring in public health. Fitting now for where my life’s journey has taken me. I have worked in Local Government for over 10 years as a project manager in community capacity building and infrastructure. It is most rewarding working with the local community to create a sense of place. Community empowerment is where positive change happens!

What is a day in your life like?

I have two very active boys, Duke and Banks who I adore. Our daily routine consists of school, childcare and work for each of us. Drop off and pick up can be a crazy time, but we make it work. Duke has sporting commitments after school…more often than not Banks will want to join in. I try to plan dinner meals as best I can, this allows me to have play time with the boys, which is usually cricket, tennis or football in the backyard. We live very close to a lake, the boys love to ride and scooter along the path. We have a very energetic Labradoodle, Floyd. He loves being around people and requires just at much attention as they boys!

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Night-time routine can be interesting….dinner, reading/homework and settling down ready for bed. The boys don’t necessarily love their sleep, lucky me! Then amongst the chaos, I try to fit in the house duties and my own administration and of course my work with Brave for Dave. When the weekend arrives, we like to get out of the house. Visit family, friends parties and time spent at the lake. I’m beyond grateful for my two boys, they make this world a better place.

What is your proudest achievement /with Brave for Dave?

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Working in partnership with the NRF to lobby the State Government to employ SA’s first specialised Brain Cancer/Tumour Nurse. On a personal level, I communicate often with patients and family members. I feel honoured to help them find that little spark of hope when in such a dark place and to offer comfort and understanding at a time of uncertainty.

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Which women inspire you the most?

Mum - she has taught me unwavering strength and commitment. Her love and encouragement set the foundation for me to live with purpose and gratitude.

I know I am bending the rules here, but I cannot leave Dave, my husband out! He has inspired me from the day I met him and has taught me how to love and what kindness truly means.

What is my purpose?

As I reflect on this the past 2 years, what I have learnt that patience is a necessity, accepting unpredictability, understanding that change is inevitable and that nothing is permanent. We will each experience these in our lives, but what’s vital is how we respond.

We often talk about what is your purpose in this life? To be honest I have always found that most challenging to answer. Life is fleeting and it brings the most incredible opportunities but also such tragedy and hardship. With that said, no matter your situation, you always have a choice in how you respond. To find your strength and work through

I have found my purpose, albeit from such a significant tragedy and loss for me and my family. My purpose, to advocate and be a voice to make change, to help others see there is hope, to help ignite courage that we all have inside us but above all….to help save the lives of those who are faced with their toughest battle that is brain cancer.

I am unwavering in my commitment to finding that cure for brain cancer and giving patients, our loved ones, the dignity they deserve. Fear can define us. Don’t let it hold you….find your purpose and keep moving forward.

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