Helping out a two-way street
ANGELA Mellows of Cabarita Beach believes volunteering not only helps a lot of organisations but benefits the volunteer themselves by building their self esteem.
“Having come from a modest upbringing I was fortunate to receive help and guidance from many wonderful people in my early years. It is now a great pleasure to be able to give back to the community.”
Mrs Mellows was born and educated in Melbourne, going on to study for a degree in early childhood education. She advocated changing the supporting mother's pension to “parenting” payments, allowing sole fathers entitlement to the benefits.
Later, she moved into hospitality and became a catering manager for Footscray Football Club then moved to North Stradbroke Island, working at Pt Lookout Hotel.
A two-year stint working and travelling overseas while based in the UK followed.
She married Michael and they moved to the Gold Coast where she worked at restaurants.
“We moved to Uki and built a home, living there for 10 years and bringing up our three children.”
Mrs Mellows has worked for several local businesses including the Cabarita Beach Hotel.
While living at Uki, she initiated clothing swaps and jumble sales with profits going to Mt Warning Preschool and the Murwillumbah Uniting Church Preschool. Nothing went to waste, with all leftover clothing and goods being donated to local op-shops.
“I was a member of Landcare at Uki and the steering committee to form what is now Ukira.”
Mrs Mellows also undertook training for Red Cross as an emergency relief worker.
“However my main focus was fundraising for Uniting Church Preschool in Murwillumbah where we tried to involve as many parents as possible.”
Last year she co-ordinated the Banana Festival Fashion Parade for St Joseph's School at South Murwillumbah where her children are students.
She was also on the steering committee for Cabarita Youth Project which has now become Cabarita Youth Services and she remains a volunteer. She is a member of Cabarita Beach Surf Life Saving Club where the children are Nippers and she also volunteers with Tweed Coast Raiders.
“It is quite difficult be heavily involved in the community while working and caring for young family but I hope to be involved with more groups in years to come.”
Apart from the family, if she has any spare time Mrs Mellows lists her hobbies as watersports, bushwalking, gardening, writing and other creative arts.