Meet Your Community: PFA President, Mrs Nicole Begley

  1. What were the key achievements of the PFA over the past year?

2016 was such a special year at St Catherine’s, as we celebrated our 120th Anniversary. Our key Achievements were producing our wonderful 12o Anniversary Blue Ribbon Recipe Cook Book, establishing closer ties with our Boarding community, providing a number of well attended and well organised major events such as The Ruth Langley Luncheon and the St Catherine’s Christmas Fair and welcoming Sherrie Zheng and Michelle Wang to the PFA, who are both instrumental in welcoming and providing support to our new Chinese families.

  1. What does your Committee hope to achieve during the coming year?

The PFA are hoping to have an excellent understanding of all the events we are currently providing by undertaking an audit of those events and undertaking research within the School community to ensure we are really meeting our aim of providing an exceptional School community environment.

I would hope to be able to make some changes to the events we are currently holding, but to also offer some new and exciting social activities to the School calendar.

  1. What are the key events taking place for the PFA in the coming 12 months?

Key events for this year are:

Thursday 9 February – New Parents Social Evening

February to May – Year Level Social Evenings

Friday 5 May – Mother’s Day Stall

Friday 12 May – Mother’s Day Breakfast

Friday 19 May – Ruth Langley Luncheon

Thursday 31 August – Father’s Day Stall and Breakfast

Friday 24 November – St Catherine’s Christmas Fair

  1. Why do you think volunteering is so important? How can people contribute?

Volunteering is so important. It allows us to give back to our communities in very tangible and meaningful ways. It boosts confidence and self esteem and allows you to gain new skills and greater knowledge.

Personally, for me, as the mother of five children, it allows me to continue to develop a different set of skills more inline with a corporate environment, and to mentally stretch myself in other ways that are unrelated to mothering. I get an enormous amount of satisfaction from seeing a particular project go from fruition to completion especially when those projects, for example the Christmas Fair last year, are attended and enjoyed by the entire School community.

I also think it’s important for my children to see that I am taking a broader interest in their lives by giving back to the School and the teachers that so wonderfully support them. It’s a way for me to show gratitude to those responsible for their education.

People can contribute in many ways big and small. Obviously they can join our PFA, or one of our many auxiliaries. Becoming a Class Representative is a great way to meet people and support your Year level. Volunteering to assist on a stall for Mother’s or Father’s day or, at our School Christmas Fair, is a small but important way to help out without being overly time consuming.

  1. Have you been involved in other roles at St Catherine’s?

I have been a Class Rep on many occasions at St Catherine’s, I often attend school excursions and last year I was the Vice President and Junior School Class Rep Co-Ordinator on the PFA.

  1. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your background?

I am originally from Sydney, and attended high school and university there. I have a Business Degree majoring in Marketing and Psychology. I am the mother to five children, two girls on either side of three boys. I lived in Perth for seven years (my husband is originally from there) before moving to Melbourne seven years ago. My husband, Ross, and I absolutely love Melbourne and we have chosen this place to raise our family and call our permanent home. I am a fitness fanatic and love to run. Our whole family are avid and passionate skiers. My favourite pastime is to go out to dinner with my husband.

  1. Tell us something our community does not know about you. 

I love Science Fiction. I will usually be drawn to choosing a book or movie in this genre. I also love listening to TED talks, usually those that are scientifically based!