Farewell to special kindergarten volunteer

By Tara Whitsed

It was not unusual for Marie Findlay to look after generations of children at Alexander Street Kindergarten.

The volunteer has spent 44 years at the facility, entertaining children with her piano playing skills, as well as providing a familiar, friendly face.

‘‘I was 33 when I started and now I’m 77,’’ she said.

Mrs Findlay said there was nothing better than seeing the smiles on the children’s faces, so much so she would continue to pop into the centre occasionally.

‘‘I’ll still call in and see them,’’ she said.

Some of Mrs Findlay’s fondest memories included sitting with the children while they played in the sandpit, often ending up with sandy toys on her skirt.

Colleague Toni Phillingham had worked alongside Mrs Findlay for 12 years.

‘‘She was already here when I got the position here,’’ Ms Phillingham said.

‘‘She has been here since her kids were here.’’

Ms Phillingham said she played a grandparent role to the children who farewelled her at the kindergarten’s Christmas party recently.

The staff, children and Mrs Findlay enjoyed morning tea and a special celebration to say goodbye.