Kathy Noonan has been volunteering as an English language tutor at the Kensington Neighbourhood House since 2013. Initially she started off tutoring one on one with a single student but in recent years has moved to helping small groups of students in our English and Work Skills Level 1 class.
After retiring from nearly 40 years of teaching in 2009 Kathy decided to pursue interests of her own. She started volunteering at the Red Cross and Melbourne Zoo. She also enrolled in an Art Class and Book Group at the Neighbourhood House.
Whilst at the Neighbourhood House Kathy responded to a call out for English language tutors. “I saw the programs for migrants and refugees and decided to volunteer to assist these very needy people”, she said. She knew her teaching background would be of great assistance.
Chris McPherson, our English and Work Skills Level 1 teacher, is really grateful for Kathy’s continuing support in the classroom. “She is a most reliable, knowledgeable person who brings both a sense of seriousness and fun to our class”, she said. The students really enjoy having Kathy in the classroom.
The reward and incentive for Kathy to continue volunteering is “the enjoyment seeing these people trying to learn English and making progress”. She has also recently started volunteering in our Family Literacy Program which supports parents in helping primary school children with their reading.
When Kathy’s not at the Neighbourhood House she minds her two granddaughters one day and week. In addition to this she attends a fitness class, yoga, and U3A Philosophy, likes to go to the movies and the Ballet and has a nice social life with friends. We’re so pleased that Kathy makes time for us in her busy week.
Kathy’s reliability, calm and caring nature and willingness to share her time and skills with our students is why she’s our 2017 Volunteer of the Year.