Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Child care director finds balance with dual role as firie

Cath Williams is good at putting out fires, both as new director of Goodstart Early Learning in Moama and as a volunteer firefighter.

IVY WISE February 22, 2013 4:59am

Goodstart Early Learning Moama director Cath Williams with Marley Goddard, 3, who attends the centre. Marley's mother Kylie Goddard is an early childcare educator.

Working with children and fighting fires may be worlds apart, but it makes for a balanced life for Cath Williams.

A volunteer firefighter with Moama Rural Fire Service for the past four years and a teacher of Certificate 3 and Diploma in Children’s Services at Campaspe College of Adult Education, Ms Williams became the new director of Goodstart Early Learning in Moama on January 21.

The former educator at Goodstart Early Learning in Echuca, Ms Williams said she saw the potential to help the centre grow and develop under Goodstart Early Learning, following the not-for-profit syndicate’s takeover of ABC Learning Centres in 2009.

As director, Ms Williams said she hoped to keep occupancy rates up and staff consistent.

‘‘I also want to create links with the community. I believe (in the saying) ‘It takes a village to raise a child’ and ... I think that’s achievable,’’ she said.

‘‘It’s a busy job, but a good job.’’

After moving to the region from the Mornington Peninsula in 2009, the mother of two joined the Moama Rural Fire Service for the community involvement and to learn new skills.

‘‘Because it’s so far removed from child care, it gives me that balance between my roles,’’ she said.

With 15 to 20 active members on the books, Ms Williams said the service was always looking for more volunteers, particularly younger people.

Training is held every Tuesday at 7.30pm at the Moama fire station on the Cobb Hwy. Anyone interested can contact captain Steve Richmond on 0408551629.

‘‘The camaraderie is fantastic and it is very family focused,’’ Ms Williams said.

‘‘Being a firie, I love that community involvement and I also hope to bring that to the (child care) centre.’’

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