Michelle Harvey has her fingers in a lot of community pies. The 51-year-old Manor Lakes resident runs the suburb’s neighbourhood markets and also runs the yearly Biggest Morning Tea.
To cap it off, she’s just started a new business. She tells the full story to Charlene Macaulay.
What’s your connection to Wyndham?
I’ve been in Wyndham since 2001. I was born and bred in Queensland, but I don’t like hot weather. A friend was moving down and I always wanted to come.
I first lived in St Kilda and South Yarra, then I convinced my brother to buy a house out here. He’s in the Army, so I went shopping for the house and chose it and then moved in!
You run the Manor Lakes Neighbourhood Market – how did that begin?
I used to do party planning, so that’s how I know a lot of people. With that, I started doing markets and you meet a lot of market stall holders and now … everyone knows me!
You’ve also hosted the Manor Lakes Biggest Morning Tea for the past four years. How did that begin?
I always liked to entertain and would do morning teas at home with friends, and I thought, why not do a [fundraising] one?
The first and second year we raised $1500 each and had about 130 people through the doors both times, last year we raised $2000.
You’re also a business owner – tell me more.
I was selling chocolates through a company in Geelong, but I’m winding that up because I started selling weighted blankets for special needs people and it’s crazy, I have no time for both.
It’s called Red Blanket Co, I started it up in October and I supply to a shop. I’ve got a sewing background and I made one for my son, who is on the spectrum, and he loved it and a few friends wanted one, and it snowballed from that.
Tell me about your family.
I’m a single parent – my son, Elijah, turns 12 this week – and I have my mum living with us as well. She helps me with my son, and I help her. Most of my family is in Queensland.
Do you have a favourite Wyndham cafe or restaurant?
Not really. I’m part of a mum’s group that goes to all different places and try them all out.