Melissa McCabe: My Favourite Things


Born and raised in Newcastle, Melissa has been involved in social and environmental activism for over 10 years.

Her love for the planet and people began at the ripe age of 11 when she delivered a “keep Port Stephens clean and green” speech to the council chambers.

Melissa was successful in securing a start-up grant though the University of Newcastle’s Centre for 21st Humanities in 2016 and Pitchfest in 2018.

This enabled her to undertake field research into the impacts of mass tourism on land rights, water depletion and pollution in Bali, Lombok, and Sumbawa in Indonesia.

As the Founder, Executive Director, and Consultant for Corethics, Melissa’s vision is to empower fashion designers who choose to manufacture offshore in developing countries with the skills and knowledge she has gained from her research while also addressing water depletion and pollution in Bali.

She will host a film fundraiser #waterforbali Saturday 24 October in Gold Class at Event Cinemas Kotara.


I feel most at peace in the water, especially the ocean. Since discovering surfing again at 25, it has allowed me to form a whole new connection to water and life below. I love how alive it makes me feel and how it teaches me to observe and trust.


I’ve always had a love for the planet. So, gardening is a natural extension of my passion for organic growing practices and combining my zero-waste approach to food. There is something magical about growing a plant from seed, tending to it, and then whipping it up into a delicious dish.


My favourite happy place is my home. A space to be creative, to meditate, to laugh and replenish. I love walking through the door after a long day to my Border Collie “Bogart” and my partner to greet me with hugs. I am very lucky!


I have travelled to Bali almost a dozen times as a tourist and, more recently, for work with Corethics. I love the layers of culture, chaos, consciousness, religion, and natural landscapes. It is a real melting pot of beauty and heartbreak that drives me to advocate on matters that need attention.


Human connection is second to none. There is something special about sharing life’s journey with another person, a stranger, a friend, a family member. I love learning about others culture, religion, philosophy, and life experience. These connections have given me a deeper understanding of unity.