building leaders tomorrow’s
FROM a career built in nursing and aged care, to being involved with the CFA and a host of community groups, hard working Killawarra resident Emma Williamson takes an active role in the community.
And having taken her place among the recent graduates of the Alpine Valleys Community Leadership Program (AVCLP), she is keen to help build her community into the future.
“My leadership journey hasn’t been a deliberate plan, but taking up roles that I am passionate about as they come along,” Emma said.
Her volunteer commitments – among others - have ranged from being involved with her childrens’ kindergarten and schools, the Wangaratta Agricultural Society, Killawarra CFA, the District 23 Rehabilitation and Health Monitoring for the CFA, and was recently nominated for the Show Horse Council of Victoria Executive Committee.
She said the AVCLP has been an essential part of her growth as a leader and going forward, will help her advocate for her community in the areas of aged care, health, agriculture, and education, as well as speaking for those “who find it hard to have a voice.”
“I feel that I am a better person for having participated in the program,” Emma said.
“The most valuable lesson is that you need to align your values with what you do and ensure you keep true to your integrity.
“Combine what you are passionate about with what you are good at, and you will encourage people to follow if you communicate, be honest and maintain integrity.”
Lisa Dekeling of Wangaratta, also part of the latest group to graduate from the program, is also a strong believer in the value of volunteering and being part of a strong community, particularly after her son, Eli, was born with a severe heart defect.
“To give back for the help we received with Eli and the rest of our family, my husband and I became the HeartKids regional coordinators,” she said, adding that she was also involved in setting up Parkrun in Wangaratta and is the founder and president of Wangaratta Runners.
Encouraged by her husband, she put in an application for the program and was accepted with a full scholarship from the June Canavan Foundation.
Lisa said the AVCLP has helped her in many ways.
“The AVCLP has given me the skills and knowledge to turn a successful Facebook group into a registered notfor-profit community running group affiliated with Athletics Victoria.
“We are now in the process of training recreational running coaches for the community and we are about to host our first running event “Predict Your Own Finish Time”,” Lisa added.
“AVCLP had also given me confidence to invite and host an international keynote speaker to Albury for a charity fundraiser for HeartKids.
“It was a continuous series of light bulb moments that increased my awareness about myself, the community and leadership.
Lisa said she has big plans for the future.
My ultimate goal is in the creation and management of a winery running event, much like the Marathon Du Medoc, to raise funds for the charity HeartKids.
“This is already a work in progress. “If I could do for HeartKids what City2City does for the Albury hospital, then I would be exceedingly pleased!”
More people in the region are being encouraged to get involved in the program.
“The Alpine Valleys Community Leadership Program (AVCLP) benefits our local communities by improving their capacity to recognise, prioritise and drive regional change through the drive of their local leaders,” said program coordinator Karlie Langdon.
“AVCLP prides itself as being a regional, intensive, experiential learning program. It is a professional development program that is both challenging and inspiring. It develops participant’s leadership skills, regional knowledge and networks of professional and community contacts, in a learning environment that is safe, supportive and enjoyable.
“The 2018 graduates represent a vast range of industries from our region including dairy, education, media, agriculture, small business, sport and health.”
Applications for the 2018-2019 program close on June 22, 2018.
For more information contact Karlie Langdon at email@example.com.
INVOLVED: Volunteering with the CFA is among the many ways Killawarra resident Emma Williamson, a recent participant in the Alpine Valleys Community Leadership Program, gives back to her community. PHOTO: Kylie Wilson
BIG TRIP: Members of the Alpine Valleys Community Leadership Program recently visited Canberra on a study tour, where they met with local member Cathy McGowan (MHR, Indi) and other prominent people, including Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Governor General Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC.
AMBITION: Lisa Dekeling is another passionate recent participant in the Alpine Valleys Community Leadership Program.