Vision Super has enough members to fill the MCG, and we know each of you has a unique story to tell. Inspired by the famous ‘Humans of New York’ Facebook page we decided to introduce ourselves to some of our members in person and share their stories and pictures with other members.
Our community and our members are at the centre of everything we do, so it’s great to hear about who they are, what they value, what their lives are like, and their hopes and fears. It’s not just inspirational, it’s also a great way to stay connected to the people we work for every day.
Paul, Vision Super member
"I’ve always lived in the western suburbs of Melbourne, and when I was growing up my parents instilled a sense of pride in living in the west. We had a backyard, trees and parks just like anyone else in any other Melbourne suburbs. We had everything that they had.
I was educated in the area, went through university, and it’s catered for all my needs. I’ve heard it described like a sense of tribalism. And it’s weird – I’ve worked outside the west for a while – maybe five years, but I was always keen to get back to the west again. It’s just that sense of being able to give something back to the community.
They say it’s something in you, you’re either a person that wants to work for an organisation that helps the community, or you want to work for an organisation that’s there for profit. I’ve always found myself drawn to the organisations that work for the community."
Nina, Vision Super member
"When I was a teenager at the supermarket checkout, it was all about earning that pay cheque and spending it immediately, but now I want to think about the longer term. I’m really trying to improve my financial literacy and I know a little bit about super, but everything I’ve learned has been from asking my family a lot of questions.
I’m quite disappointed, maybe even a bit angry that we never learned about super and tax in school. I think it’s incredibly important knowledge to have, and even with support and knowledge from my family I’ve had trouble navigating the system when doing things like my tax or learning about my super.
I can only imagine how difficult it would be for someone without any access to help, and I worry that they wouldn’t know their rights and entitlements. I think there needs to be more emphasis on helping young people and women become financially literate."
Bruce, Vision Super member
“I look after the mowing of all the parks and gardens in this area. I’ve been working here for 27 years… because I don’t want to get a real job! No, but really, I’ve stayed here all this time because I like the people.
When I’m not here, I’m fishing. If money was no object, I’d fish all day. I’ve got a wife and three daughters at home - I’ve got to get on the water sometimes and escape!”
Colin, Vision Super member
"I’ve been working for local government since 1995 in the enforcement area, which was a natural progression for me and many others like me who come from a police background.
When I was in the police academy the law instructor asked each recruit how long we intended staying in the job. One after the other, the 24 recruits said “Oh, until I retire or 30 to 40 years or so.” My answer was 20 years. The inspector looked quizzically at me and asked me “Why 20 years?” I answered “Well by then I will be 39 and still young enough to do something else.” I was wrong though I stayed in that job for 20 years and 1 day!
Local government has taken over a lot of enforcement from other government bodies, particularly when it comes to enforcing the law in respect to dog attacks.
Working in animal management, I’ve found that much more is required of animal management officers than in the past, but the basic principle of serving the public and public safety is exactly the same between the police service and local government."
Laura, Vision Super member
“I do worry about what’s in store for our generation. My number one concern would be the environment, but I also think that financially, things are so much more volatile than they’ve ever been.
It’s quite scary that a lot of us won’t be able to buy a house. It’s what our parents and grandparents did, and then all of sudden, we just can’t. In other ways, our generation is very fortunate. A lot of us can travel and we have access to incredible technology.”
Dolphy, Vision Super member
"Previous to this, I worked in sales and marketing, and before that I was in the food industry for a long time. I was a pastry chef that was allergic to flour, so for health reasons and everything, it was time for a change. I did some casual work and long story short, I ended up here.
I like the conditions here. You know what your job is, and you’ve got the freedom of how you do it without someone looking over your shoulder. I tend to work better like that, with an element of trust between myself and my employer.
When I’m not working, I like oil painting and public speaking, doing a bit of gardening and reading. I hope retirement is more of the same.”
Sara, Vision Super member
"When I moved to Australia I originally lived in Sydney and when I first arrived there, I remember being in awe of the city lights at night. Where I came from in Samoa there weren’t many street lights around the place.
My daughter’s childhood is so different to what mine was. So much of her world revolves around electronics and being indoors, whereas when I was a kid, I was always playing outside.
My daughter and I go back to Samoa and visit my family every now and again. She was born here, and the first time I brought her to Samoa she was amazed. It was like my reaction to the Sydney lights but reversed - she couldn’t get over the fact that there were just chickens, pigs and dogs just roaming around! It’s just small village life over there, if you want an avocado or an orange, you just pick it off a tree!"