By Emma Charlston, Marketing and Communications Coordinator CUFA
At the close of 2013 Lisa Northill, with the support of Macquarie Credit Union, signed up for the adventure of a lifetime, the CUFA Fijian Leadership Challenge 2014. She has kindly taken the time to write a little about herself.
One of the many great things about the Leadership Challenge Program is the diversity of people it attracts. No matter what path people have taken, they all come together from various walks of life, to help strangers living across the Asia Pacific have a better life for themselves and their families.
Tell us a little about yourself.I’m a 45 year old single mum to 4 beautiful children – Sarah 23, Joe 13 and Lucy 12. My eldest son, James, passed away in October 2011 aged 19. I have always been involved with sport – squash, basketball and netball in particular – and was undefeated in the family Ping-Pong tournament at Christmas time. I also enjoy gardening if I have any spare time.
The CUFA Fijian Challenge is a great opportunity, what particularly attracted you to apply for the program?
My Manager, Leanne, emailed me information about the challenge last year. It sounded like a worthwhile cause and a great opportunity, but the timing wasn’t right. This year however, everything seems to be lining up. The Board of Directors and Management of the Credit Union are keen to raise our profile within the Dubbo community as we have re-branded and are moving premises closer to the CBD within the next 12 months. They are also committed to ongoing staff development. I also look forward to the opportunity to share my knowledge of financial services and my own personal life experiences to help others.
What are you hoping to get out of the Challenge?
On a personal level, I really just want to contribute to bringing about positive changes to someone’s life. I think taking part in this challenge will help improve my communication and leadership skills and make me a stronger person. I see it as a privilege to be invited into these communities to share in their cultural & family life. I’m also looking forward to the community volunteering when I return.
What do you see as the biggest Challenge ahead?
Doing this profile was the hardest thing – everything else should be easy in comparison!!!! Hard work doesn’t scare me – talking about myself does.
Living so far inland, how are you feeling about training for the kayaking component of the Challenge?
We are lucky in Dubbo to have the Macquarie River run through the middle of town, so I can train there and also at the gym.
Do you have any great ideas for fundraising as yet?
I have a few ideas for fundraising and will be working on these over the next few weeks – Dubbo is a very generous community and I’ve already had people pledge their support.
What are three interesting facts about yourself
I asked my kids for input on this one:
My 13 year old son said “You know a lot of old songs” (I think he means everything prior to 2000!!)
My 12 year old daughter said “You’re a good mum, you’re smart, you’re good at euchre (cards) & you like going on scary rides at amusement parks” (she’s a sweetie)
My 23 year old daughter is currently in Bali on holidays.
I hope you all enjoyed getting to know Lisa. I thank her for generously giving us her time, honesty and support for the Challenge Program and for CUFA’s projects.