The feeling of a small town and strong community is something Kathryn has always been drawn to. And so, when she came to Pine Creek in 2013, she was immediately attached.
As she describes, it’s the kind of place where everyone says hello, and if something goes wrong, the community is there to back you up.
Kathryn started out as an Executive Assistant VDRC, working in the role for two years before trying to retire (and soon realised she wasn’t quite ready for it).
You can now find her in the Pine Creek Community Library, working as VDRC’s Library Officer.
The library serves as community hub for people wanting to borrow a book, sort out their Centrelink, or brush up on their IT skills in a weekly workshop headed up by Kathryn.
High school students are also able learn remotely at the library, through an out-of-school program that hosts a teacher from Katherine High School at the library a few times a week.
We sat down with Kathryn to have a yarn about why she loves Pine Creek, and her vision for the library.
When did you move to Pine Creek?
We moved to Pine Creek in 2013. Before that I was living in Gove, working for East Arnhem Shire Council. I started working for the Victoria Daly Regional Council in 2014 as an Executive Assistant and was in that job for two years. I then tried to retire but realised I didn’t like having a whole heap of spare time, so I came back.
You’re now the library officer at the Pine Creek Community Library. Tell me what an average day looks like?
My day starts at 9am and finishes at 1pm. I’ll normally get two or three people coming through the place during the day to use the computers or borrow a book.
The library is also the Centrelink access point, so a lot of people come in to sort out their forms and applications. I help a lot of people use the computers because IT literacy levels are quite low across the community. I try and talk people through what they need to do instead of actually doing it for them, so they are learning at the same time. I run an over 50’s computer literacy class on Friday mornings which the community seem to really like.
What are some of the things you want to achieve at the library?
For starters, I want to see more kids and young people in the library. A lot of kids living in Pine Creek travel to Katherine for school, so they completely miss out on getting into the library because it’s closed by the time they get home in the late afternoon.
We collaborate with the Pine Creek Primary School to get kids into the library, but a big focus for me is interacting and connecting with kids a bit more so they know what’s on and really want to come in and use the library.
What do you love about living in Pine Creek?
I like living here because it’s small, and I know most of the residents. I think I know most people through this job, I don’t know if I would have gotten to know people so well otherwise.
I like being able to walk into town and be able to say hello to everyone and know everyone. I grew up in Western Sydney back when it had a great country town feel, and that’s something I love about living in Pine Creek, it has a feeling of everyone supporting you.