Page 8 Thursday, 11 May, 2017
Connecting people and communities BN
Working hard Ron Sterling, Maury Hall, Sam Sgarioto and Wayne Jones celebrate the West Wing Picture: STEWART CHAMBERS opening. 167266
Best man cave By Cam Lucadou-Wells
Liam Cogan and Jam Badajos of VFA Narre Warren, a registered training organisation that specialises in vocational training for the fitness and sport, massage therapy and early childhood education industries. Well established in both the industry and local community, VFA has been providing the health, fitness and education industries for job-ready graduates for 20 years. It also supplies exciting opportunities for work placement and transition into work upon completion of studies. “Many of our highly qualified trainers still work in their industry bringing current industry knowledge together with
years of experience to offer a holistic and relevant qualification that is the most up-to-date in the industry,” Jeremy said. VFA applications are now open for July courses in fitness and sport, massage therapy and early childhood education and care. Visit www.vfalearning.vic. edu.au or call 8794 6000 to learn more and start an application.
After months of fund-raising and toil, Akoonah Park Men’s Shed’s 165 members have unveiled their ‘West Wing’. The $130,000 recreation room, commercial-size kitchen and “nuclear-bunker strength” toilets make quite the man cave, largely built with the hands and knowhow of the shed’s retirees. Some estimated the volunteer labour saved $50,000. On hand is a library, pool tables, video projector, sick-bay bed, couches, armchairs and smart TV - the perfect place to have a cuppa with this chatty group of enterprising blokes. It was paid for by a combination of council, state and federal grants, donations, sausage sizzle fund-raisers and $50 pitched in by each Men's Shed member. There was a mass of donated materials from businesses and
people, such as carpet tiles, seats, timber panelling and a pool table. At the launch on 4 May, president Ron Sterling declared the journey of construction was as satisfying as the outcome. “Our members are very proud of their shed.” Setting the tone, the shed’s music group strummed behind an affirming song: “It’s all right, it’s OK/Doesn’t really matter if you’re old and grey.” On an in-house video, past president Lindsay Harding said the shed was not just about “playing around with tools”. Its main thrust was men’s health, and it was a supporter of the Prostate Cancer Foundation. Part of that health message is simply to have men talk among men. They could talk to each other about what they’re go-
ing through. Sometimes these were matters they wouldn’t talk about at home. The shed is open five days a week, buzzing with monthly movie nights, photo club, woodworking, blacksmithing, a music group and soon-to-start cookery classes. Currently the workshop is abuzz with an extensive renovation of ‘Doris’ - a 50-year-old Morris Minor - to sell off for charity. Mr Sterling said the next challenge was to open up at evenings and weekends for potential employed members. “We’re starting to get some younger guys here. We’ve got a uni student who comes here on his day off to learn about blacksmithing - those skills that are lost. “We’ve got that critical mass of people. You can almost find an expert in anything.” 12351888-HM19-17
The Victorian Fitness Academy (VFA Learning) Narre Warren is a registered training organisation that specialises in vocational training for the fitness and sport, massage therapy and early childhood education industries. With a purpose-built facility offering flexible learning options, business development manager Jeremy Riley explained that the strong practical component offered by VFA assists individuals in gaining the skills and knowledge required to begin a rewarding career. “Anyone from school leavers, career changers and those looking to return to study or work that would love to start an exciting career as a personal trainer, massage therapist or early childhood educator should consider getting started with VFA learning,” Jeremy said. With student wellbeing and success the focus of VFA learning, the academy is linked with Deakin and Federation Universities and offers pathways to degree qualifications beyond a VFA diploma. “Choosing a VFA pathway program can see students transition from VCAL/VCE to a working qualification before they start university,” Jeremy said. “(Doing this gives students) the ability to start work in their chosen field earlier and gain invaluable experience that many university students miss out on.”
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Published on May 10, 2017