Spotswood’s Pam Stock has volunteered at Gateway Community Services for about 15 years. She speaks to Goya Dmytryshchak.
What’s your connection to Hobsons Bay?
I’ve lived here roughly 28 years and I love it so much. It was perfect for when I was working because my job took me all over the place – I was a representative for my company. I raved on about it so much that now I’ve got my niece and her husband and their son living in Williamstown, so I’m pretty proud of that.
What do you love about Spotswood?
Its convenience to everything. My hairdresser actually told me something interesting and I feel it’s true: that Spotswood is the smallest listed suburb in Australia. It’s stuck in between Newport and Yarraville and when you look at housing and things like that, people must love living here because you don’t often see houses for sale. It’s just an interesting little suburb and we just drive down the end of the avenue and you’re almost on the West Gate – not that I’d want to be on there at the moment, I think it’s a bit of a problem.
But, generally speaking, when I was working, I had to go across as far as South Australia – well, you’d be on the freeway and on your way in a blink, so it was always wonderful for that. Since I’ve stopped working, it’s just a little town within a city.
What would you change about it?
Nothing. I think it’s perfect the way it is. It’s just nice.
Can you tell me about your volunteer work?
I don’t have children so I needed something because I had a very busy job and I was very, very busy. I went over to Gateway Community Services and I found that was the answer. I’ve done a bit of everything there. Initially, I was what they call a jockey – there’s a driver on the bus and the jockey is the person that gets out of the bus and makes sure the members coming on are safely assisted on and buckled up. And then I did another program which was friendly visiting … you go and visit someone in their home. Now I’m in the kitchen preparing food or meals for the people who come into the programs.
The staff are wonderful. The training and the support is just ongoing, plus meeting all the – we call them members – the people who are part of the structure of Gateway Community Services. They’re not quite United Nations but there are different nationalities there and they all have a wonderful life story to share with you. They’re just so interesting to talk to and are just wonderful people.
What’s your favourite cafe or eatery?
I go to Candied Bakery in Hudsons Road. It’s just wonderful. I take my friends there and my family there, and then when I go visiting various members of the family, I have to take them something from the bakery.