Monica Glenn OAM - an inspiration to us all, including during COVID-19

Monica Glenn

Friends of the Alliance first got to know Monica from Dondingalong, NSW a few years ago when she attended the 6th Rural and Remote Health Scientific Symposium in Canberra.  We have kept in touch and were so delighted to see her again at the 15th National Rural Health Conference in Hobart in 2019.

Monica Mary Glenn was born in Sydney in 1929. She attended a number of schools in Sydney including Randwick High School, and Sydney Engineering School in Ultimo. She worked for Coote & Jorgensen Engineers in Sydney and at Tomlinson’s Steel in Perth.

She married a wonderful school teacher and had five children in 6 years.  She lived and worked in five States in Australia and is proud to say “Life has been interesting and busy!”

Other positions have included:  Director of the YWCA in Canberra; National Director, Melbourne YWCA; National President, Keep Australia Beautiful; and National President, National Council of Women. Monica has also held numerous volunteer positions.

On 26 January 1992 Monica was awarded an OAM “For service to the community, particularly through women’s affairs”.

During the past two months while in lockdown, Friends of the Alliance has been engaged in a musical collaboration with Toowoomba singer/songwriter Josh Arnold from Small Town Culture. The collaboration involved people from rural and remote Australia contributing ideas, words and music that Josh has collated into a song dedicated to those doing it tough in rural and remote Australia at the moment. The song is called ‘Build ‘em up!’ and you can view it on YouTube:

The second stage of the musical collaboration is a video that will be launched in the coming weeks.

From isolation in Monica’s aged care facility in Kempsey she contributed a beautiful rendition of ‘Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree!’ (She claims her singing was such a poor effort she might go and have some singing lessons.)

“I have a broken back, an eye infection and a skin irritation. Sorry for the poor effort and to be full of complaints but I miss my family who are in States other than NSW and unable to help. However, the carers were very helpful here in Vincent Court aged care facility."

“But the sun is shining, I have kind staff here looking after me, good food, I don’t have to cook or wash-up after, and I have a clean bed to sleep in. I have been gardening this morning so life is great! I wish you well with the musical collaboration.”

Friends of the Alliance would like to thank Monica for the effort in putting this video together and we hope you enjoy her performance as much as we have.

With fond wishes Monica and we hope you get to see your family soon. X


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