The (un)Ripe Mission

Hi, I’m Jo! And it’s my mission to provide a platform for this tribe, to create a supportive environment & community for Childless and Childfree women to share our stories and experiences.

“(unRipe) is for and about childless and childfree women who are anything but unripe! We’re a juicy community.”

(un)Ripe is for and about women who are anything but unripe. We’re a juicy bunch of women hitting our stride despite, in many cases, our lives not turning our how we, or society, planned, with 2.1 kids and fulfillment through our careers, our travels, our pets, our friends and families. Instead we’re paving a different path, our path, and telling the world that it’s okay. We’ve chosen or have been dealt a different set of cards and we’re getting on with it.

If this sounds like your type of juiciness, then (un)Ripe is your safe haven too, where you can exchange ideas and speak your truth without fear of judgement.

Along the way, I’ll share my story and yours, talk about advocacy within the health community, discuss IVF, miscarriage, abortion, infertility, the differences between being childfree and childless, where to find appropriate grief counselling for women and, most of all, let’s talk about creating a fulfilling and meaningful life regardless of circumstance. Because that’s the end game, isn’t it?

The (un)Ripe Community is a group of loud and proud advocates for childless and childfree women, with a very Australian flavour.”

After forming a local childless women’s Facebook group from a desperation to meet up with other women just like me, I soon knew that I had found my tribe.

I have have seen firsthand the need for women to talk about our journeys as childless and childfree women. We’ve been silent too long and I’m here to tell you that our community of not made up of the sad spinsters or unhappily married and desperate for kids and wondering what the hell life is about. Actually, that last part is sometimes true. We’re seekers. We’re all the things that women can be, and I know we need to talk about it all!

This community has experienced childlessness in a variety of ways – some are single and have not met an appropriate partner, some are married and have gone through IVF, and for some, their decision to be childfree has always been clear.

For those of us whose choices were made for us, we have had to re-evaluate our lives – we’ve lost our best friends because we’re not part of the mum community, other women feel sorry for us, that we can’t understand what they’re going through, that we’ll never understand true love. And they’re right. We have to find our identity and deal with our grief, our loss, without the support of friends or from professionals.

The facts are that the number of childless women over 40 in Australia (per the last census taken in each country) is on the increase. There were around 17% in Australia and it is predicated this will increase to 25% within the next 10 years.

By supporting this growing community, we can make sure that more women don’t go through what we have.

I’m here, with my co-hosts, to demonstrate the life that is possible after grief, that we can pursue a life of purpose and meaning outside of the traditional nuclear family. We’ll work with women to help them, us, find this purpose. We’re on a mission!

PS. Come and hang our in our (very) private Facebook Group:

Jo Vraca

Award winning author, coach, journalist, businesswoman, traveller, pasta and bread maker, one-time roller derby wanna-be, wife and friend, Jo is on a mission to get women talking. From her beginnings as a new arrival to Australia in 1971, living in commission flats with her parents who spoke no English, Jo has made it her life purpose to tell stories and help childless women who want to find their life purpose.

With a postgraduate degree in languages, linguistics and writing, Jo has spent most of her life capturing and telling stories of women who feel voiceless but with big stories to tell.

Through her lived experience as a journalist and businesswoman Jo is living her best childless life alongside a community of childless and childfree women to create a life purpose beyond the ideal of motherhood.

Jo lives in Melbourne with her husband of 26 years, five cats and two dogs.

You can find her books on Amazon HERE and she sometimes blogs at

My Books on Amazon (and loads of other great stores):

Simonne: A Passion For Life

The true story of a young girl who spent three years in the cellar of the Paris National Library during World War II.

Paris, September 1944. Paris is free again. A kind-faced policeman carries an emaciated Jewish girl from a cellar. Her name is Simonne Levi, and for the past three years she has been held prisoner by police commissioner George Boucher. Raped. Abused. Never shown the light of day. She is fifteen years old.

But that is only the beginning of Simonne Levi’s story. Over the next sixty years she will marry four times, bear four children and adopt a fifth, travel to Tunisia, Italy, Switzerland, England, the United States, and Australia. She will meet Carl Jung, Pablo Picasso, and Salvador Dali, battle the Swiss legal system and become a leader in the treatment of abused, handicapped, and autistic children. She will investigate lead poisoning in children and make powerful enemies, lose her house, her practice, and her livelihood. She will find redemption in the strangest of places, and in the end she will discover that for all she has been through she has no regrets, and life is beautiful.



Floating Upstream

Julia Marconi has a simple dream–to get out of Goldburne, the stinking hot town in rural Australia, where she’s followed the rules her whole life. She dreams of adventures far away from her violent father whose only goal is to maintain his old world values in changing times. Julia longs for true love rather than the match “made” for her years ago.
Super spunk Robbie Ventura and the arrival of the Carnival add unseen complications to her life, just as she’s ready to settle in and stay out of trouble. It’s all so tantalising. Just a taste here and there won’t hurt. After all, she’s an excellent liar. So with her brother’s motto, “Don’t get caught,” stuck in her head, Julia tries to survive her senior year of high school. All she has to do is spend the last year of the 70s with her head afloat, despite the currents dragging her away from her goals.
But the town of Goldburne and her father have eyes and ears everywhere, and her parents’ plans for Julia don’t involve starting the new decade and new life in the city. A secret that spans three generations and a war could mean Julia ends up like Maria Gervase –knocked up and married by 18.



Good girls and bad girls, they’re everywhere. Which one are you?

Girls is a collection of short stories about young women in the city and the country, who are living with choices made by, and for, them. Dive into their lives.


The Lucky 13

My Interviews with traditional and independent authors about writing.