Old-school ways still serve Roa

Kapi-Mana News - - FRONT PAGE - KRIS DANDO

Cathy Roa, net­baller tour­na­ment or­gan­iser extraordinaire, is old school.

‘‘I use pa­per, and that’s hard for peo­ple to un­der­stand,’’ she said.

‘‘But do­ing it on a com­puter means things like the dif­fer­ent age groups, num­ber of courts, um­pires and other things might not be taken into con­sid­er­a­tion. Peo­ple call me to help out now and again for a tour­na­ment, and I will still do it on pa­per.’’

Roa has been in­volved in the sport for more than 48 years, as a player on the Mun­gavin courts, then as a coach and ad­min­is­tra­tor with Kapi Mana and Net­ball Cen­tral Zone.

Al­though she had a paid po­si­tion with the Cen­tral Pulse un­til re­cently, much of her ded­i­ca­tion to net­ball has been of the vol­un­teer va­ri­ety.

That in­cluded un­lock­ing chang­ing rooms, sweep­ing courts and step­ping in as a club um­pire when there were no-shows.

‘‘I love this sport, it’s all I’ve known. When I was grow­ing up, it was hockey or net­ball and I liked my shins too much to play hockey.’’

Roa re­ceived a Porirua 50th medal last year for her ser­vice to her sport in this city.

‘‘My first thought was, ‘Who did this to me?’ I have to ad­mit it’s pretty cool. For most of us [medal re­cip­i­ents], we’re do­ing stuff in the com­mu­nity be­cause we love it and there is sat­is­fac­tion in mak­ing things hap­pen.

‘‘Vol­un­teers have be­come more im­por­tant, but a few years ago there was an ex­pec­ta­tion among the older mem­bers of sports clubs that the young ones com­ing through would take over. It’s just what hap­pened.’’

Roa has lived in the same house in Els­don since she moved there from the Hutt Val­ley aged 2.

She said she was glad there was a drive to re­vi­talise the city cen­tre, be­cause it was her fo­cal point grow­ing and at­tend­ing St Pius X and Bishop Viard Col­lege.

‘‘Ev­ery­one had fam­ily mem­bers who worked at Olympic Sta­tionery, Ko­dak, Todd Mo­tors or in town.

‘‘I worked at ev­ery phar­macy but one over the years, and the CBD was a hub where ev­ery­one met. I watched break­dancers out­side the post of­fice on a Thurs­day night. It was bril­liant.’’

She was ap­pointed man­ager of Porirua Healthy Safer City Trust last year and said she was en­joy­ing con­nect­ing with the com­mu­nity out­side net­ball.

PHOTO: MARK TANTRUM

Cathy Roa with Porirua mayor Nick Leggett at last Oc­to­ber’s 50th an­niver­sary din­ner.

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