“Taking early retirement in 1998 after working thirty seven years as an administrative officer (clerk) with the Commonwealth Government’s Postmaster Generals Department, (forerunner of Telstra & Australia Post).

I then conducted a second career as an honorary youth worker in the community since 1960 outside of my full time job. This activity encompassed church boys clubs, YMCA boys clubs, founding the Williamstown Juniors Football Club in 1963, coaching junior football and junior cricket.

I am involved with Williamstown Little Athletics Centre (Saturdays) from season 1967/68 to the present, and South Melbourne Districts Little Athletics Centre (Sundays) for the past six seasons.

I have been volunteering in various schools with EdConnect since 2007 which was previously known as Time Help. Also, if I am free during the day, on the day, I will assist with school athletic days being held at Newport Park facility.

In 2000 I was awarded the Australian Sports Medal, an award under the Australian Honours System, for contribution to junior sport.

During the 1970’s I served a couple of years as an honorary probation officer of the Children’s Court.

Although a bachelor living alone, I was involved in full time and respite foster care on and off for fifteen years from the early 1980’s.

Life was great until March this year. I was coaching boys and girls in high jumping, coaching football teams at club level and at Auskick in Williamstown and Port Melbourne, and regularly assisting in school classrooms. Then suddenly everything shut down.

My life was, and still is, horrendously wasted during the Covid 19 lockdown period, there is no “sugar coating” it. Being a dedicated lifetime youth worker there is no way I can keep busy and, living alone, I found the time considerably boring. Of course there is housework, shopping, and walking to be done, but technology such as phones, computers, and television is no substitute whatsoever for being actively out and about in the community.

Even the gymnasium and libraries I frequent are closed, not to mention scheduled health and dental appointments being put back to later in the year where they will be jammed in together.

When this period is over I am looking forward to returning to libraries, gym sessions, junior sports coaching and assisting at schools.

My recollection of Covid 19 lockdown experience will be how dreadfully boring, lonely and constricting it was.”