Employee still ‘part of the furniture’
THE Manjimup Family Centre has farewelled its toy librarian and long-serving employee Tina Rhodes.
Mrs Rhodes had been involved with the centre for more than 20 years, starting out as a playgroup member before joining the committee as the fundraising director in 1998.
Mrs Rhodes was also involved in the creche and playgroup and was well-known for her role as the centre’s toy librarian for more than 14 years.
“I’m a Jack of all trades really,” she said.
During her time on the committee, Mrs Rhodes had helped raise more than $40,000 for the centre through raffles and various fundraisers.
Mrs Rhodes will continue her role as a cleaner at the centre and will help out with creche, playgroup or “wherever needed”.
“They haven’t quite got rid of me yet,” she said.
“I’ll still be popping in and out...I’m part of the furniture.
“I’ll miss the kids – I’ve watched a lot of them grow and I’ve made some lifelong friends and learnt a lot of new skills.”
Mrs Rhodes’ position as a toy librarian was no longer supported due to the decline in usage of the toy library.
The toy library will remain open and will be operated by existing employees.
“When I first started we had kids come in and use the toy library all the time but now kids have so much at home they tend to come in less,” she said.
“My kids used to have so much fun with the toy library but of course back then we didn’t have all these computers and technology.”
Mrs Rhodes said she encouraged kids to come along to playgroup to prepare for school and meet new friends.
“Playgroup has things like the Little Chefs Program, which teaches kids to cook and the garden where they can learn to plant vegetables and grow flowers,” she said.
“It’s all about getting dirty and getting a feel for the earth.”
Mrs Rhodes said with more spare time on her hands she’ll spend more time gardening and travelling with her husband.
“I would like to thank all the businesses and parents for their help with fundraising,” she said.
“Without their help, we just wouldn’t be able to do it.