Every month, we like to get to know a member of our amazing Victorian Guiding community a little better. This month we caught up with Maree Whitehead.
Maree joined the Guiding community just over a decade ago, at the same time as her daughter. She is now Mallee Region Manager for Girl Guides Victoria, and the Sunraysia Gang Show Junior Cast Coordinator/Welfare Director.
How did your Guiding journey start, and what made you decide to become a volunteer with Girl Guides Victoria?
My eldest daughter joined Guides nearly 12 years ago and her Unit needed a helper. It all just started from there, and the rest is history.
This year was your 11th year being involved in the Sunraysia Gang Show. Can you tell us about your involvement in this year’s production, and what your favourite aspect of Gang Show is?
This year, I am the Sunraysia Gang Show Junior Cast Coordinator and Welfare Director. I love working with the Junior Cast and seeing them grow and become more confident as they develop the show and step onto the stage. I also love that our Junior Cast (both from Guides and Scouts) are coming together to put on an amazing variety show, while pushing themselves to try new things – and be very surprised that they end up enjoying it!
This year’s Gang Show saw the largest number of Girl Guides on stage for many years – it was very exciting.
What’s something unexpected that being a Girl Guides volunteer has taught you?
Guiding is way more than 2 hours each week (laughs). Becoming Region Manager has opened my eyes to the ‘business’ that is Guides, and the hard work and effort that is put in day and day out by our state office JPC staff. It really takes a village to keep the wheels turning in an organisation that is constantly moving.
Aside from Guiding, what do you like to do in your spare time?
Between Guides and Gang Show, there is not a lot of spare time. I love musicals and was able to spend some time with my girls recently in Melbourne, where we saw Midnight and & Juliet. There are loads more musicals on the bucket list!
What is your favourite movie of all time?
That’s a tough one – my top three are The Green Mile, The Shawshank Redemption and The Blind Side (maybe tied with Mr Hollands Opus). There are too many!
What is your proudest accomplishment?
Wow – that’s another tough one. I am most proud of my family – that through any trials, they have always tried their best, and often surprise me with their ability to roll with the punches. I am a very proud mum!