Different women, one view. How awesome is that!
I was invited as the author of Pickle to Pie and Something Missing to talk about how I became a novelist and my journey from VCE to PhD. I was to be the guest speaker at the VIEW Dingley Chelenham inaugural luncheon at the Keysborough Golf Club.
After receiving the invitation the first thing I did was to learn as much as I could, via the internet, about this amazing group of talented women. However, I was not prepared for the genuine welcome and friendliness of everyone there. Edna, Jennie and Kath, all from different VIEW clubs and part of the Development Team, plus the National president, Gwen Wilton took me under their wing. We laughed, shared stories and I learnt first hand about the many projects they embraced. Wonderful women, all with a story to tell.
I soon understood that VIEW was an acronym for voice, interests and education of women. They believe that every child deserves a chance and they live by Mother Teresa’s belief in the joy of giving a gift when there is no chance of any return.
As Australia’s largest children’s educational charity, The Smith Family provides targeted educational support for disadvantaged students. There are 34,000 students in Australia currently supported by The Smith Family Group
As an APA (Australian Postgraduate Award) scholarship recipient for my PhD at Swinburne University I know only too well what a scholarship can mean to a student. I makes you feel as if some group has faith in you as a person, not only to deliver a 100,000 word thesis but also that your work will add to the sum of human knowledge. Someone cares enough to back you financially for three years. You are not alone. Someone is supporting you and your passion. For a mature aged woman student it makes you stand tall and in my male orientated world, money speaks louder than words.
VIEW’s pledge is to promote the interest of VIEW, extend friendship to all and to help those in need. One student William Nguyen was identified as needing assistance and with VIEW support is currently studying at Monash University. His story of growing up in a single parent home with three younger brothers in Sunshine and the importance of being supported and helped over the years was inspiring. He was such a humble, intelligent young man. I can see him going far in his chosen career.
The focus of this amazing group is to improve the educational outcomes of disadvantaged children. In this way they make a positive, sustainable and measurable difference. And they do it so well. The whole event was beautifully organised, speakers stuck to allotted times and the venue looked fantastic. But more important than that was the happy atmosphere in the room. They laughed, swapped stories and made the most of every minute. It was a joyous occasion.
This day was a celebration. The newly formed Dingley – Chelsea had the twenty-five members needed to form their own VIEW group and were being inducted into the VIEW family. There was even an amazing colour co-ordinated cake
Each new member was called forward to the podium, received their VIEW badge, shook hands with the National president of VIEW and smiled for the camera. The group photo will surely find its way into the monthly magazine viewmatters.
After a delicious meal it was time for me to talk about how I never thought about becoming a writer until a twist of fate uncovered a passion that changed my studies at University from Sociology to Creative Writing. I shared with them my delight when my PhD novel, Something Missing was published by the London based MadeGlobal Publishing. From there I talked about the joys and pitfalls of returning to study as a mature aged student and the impact of being awarded an APA doctorate scholarship. How it meant I could complete my academic journey.
I could also promote my books and pass on where to buy a copy of Something Missing
Book depository (free postage): https://www.bookdepository.com/Something-Missing-Glenice-Whitting/9788494593765
Amazon Kindle books: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MQKMUZZ?tag=theancom-20
Two women, two countries. Serendipity, life, friendship
Diane, a young Australian mother meets Maggie, a sophisticated American poet, in a chance encounter. Everything – age, class and even nationality – separates them. Yet all is not quite as it seems. Maggie is grieving for her eldest daughter and trapped in a marriage involving infidelity and rape. Diane yearns for the same opportunities given to her brother. Their lives draw them to connect. This is the story of two unfulfilled women finding each other when they needed it most. Their pen-friendship will change them forever.