For many people, changing careers can be a daunting prospect. For Nic Guida, making the move to the White Road Community Centre as the Men’s Shed Coordinator was one of the best decisions he’s made.
What is your current role and what does it involve?
I supervise and keep the men in my groups happy, comfortable and safe. I sit down with them and find out what topics they would like to discuss, I organise wood work projects that they would like to be involved in and are able to do, as well as to create a friendly and home-like environment where they feel free to express themselves with whatever it may be. I like to think of my role as making the Men’s Shed a place they look forward to coming back to.
What was your previous role, before you joined VMCH?
In my previous role I worked as a machinist in truck fabrication. I made many different parts as well as completing the final testing of the different truck models once they came off the assembly line. A very different role to what I do now!
How long have you worked for VMCH?
Looking back, it seems that time has flown by, it has been almost five years.
Why did you choose to work for VMCH?
VMCH seems to have chosen me! About five years ago, White Road were looking for a person with a trade background with good knowledge and experience of electrical tools, and able to drive a mini bus. I had been retrenched from my job due to a down turn, so after almost ten years in the industry, I thought to myself ‘why not?’, and I’m very happy that I applied for the job.
What do you enjoy about working at White Road?
I enjoy meeting each of the men that come to the shed, getting to know them and their different personalities. Hearing and listening to their happy or sad stories, the Men’s Shed is a great place to be, for both myself and the men that attend.
What is the biggest challenge in your role?
It is always a sad time when one of the men’s ailments advances to the point that he can’t attend the Men’s Shed anymore.
What do you love about your job?
I love it when the men come in and greet the other blokes with a knowing smile. I love it when they just go and make themselves a coffee. I love it when I see them talking to one another and laughing. And I must say, I love it when a family member tells me that their loved one really enjoys being here!
What is your future wish for the people we support?
My future wish for the men is that they can look back fondly, with a warm feeling inside, at the memories they experienced at the shed and the friends they made whilst they were here.
What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
I like helping people in a practical way; family, friends, work colleagues or a stranger. I also like making a bit of noise with my guitar, and it is noise because I’m not that good! But it can be quite relaxing and a good way to unwind after a day at work.
What is something that not many people would know about you?
I think most people know I’m French born (in Lyon), but are not aware that I have Italian parents, So, they speak to me in Italian and I reply in French! I can also make “torrone” the Italian hard nougat with hazelnuts; it’s great for the taste buds, but not good for the sugar levels!
For more information about the White Road Community Centre, contact us on 1300 971 720.