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Inspiring Women of PARC: Celebrating International Women’s Day 2020

International Women’s Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day focuses on accelerating gender parity and is all about unity, celebration, reflection, advocacy and action. International Women’s Day has been occurring for well over a century – and continues to grow from strength to strength.

At PARC we are surrounded by amazing women. 76% of our staff are female, with 50% of Senior Managers being women.

To celebrate International Women’s Day, we’re doing a series of stories on Inspiring Women of PARC in the lead up to Sunday, this year’s International Women’s Day.

Our Marketing Specialist Jess de Araugo caught up with one inspiring woman Melanie (Mel) Hartskeerl.

Mel wears many hats at PARC. She has been a Membership Sales Consultant since 2016, taking out the 2017 PARC Sales Consultant of the Year. Mel is also a Personal Trainer, and most recently was heading up the Group Exercise program while a colleague was on maternity leave. Mel is a qualified naturopath, and is passionate about sharing her knowledge with both colleagues and members. In fact, we are hosting a specific Women’s Health Seminar, that will shed light on how women’s hormones and cycle impacts energy levels, work outs and fitness goals. Learn more here. Let’s get to know this inspiring woman of PARC.

Meet Mel:

Tell us a bit about yourself.

Wow, where do I start? I am a single mum of 2 gorgeous children. They are 15 and 11 years old, both members of PARC, and both keep my on my toes.

I have a degree in Naturopathy, Nutrition and Western Herbal Medicine, and have my Certificate 4 in fitness so I divide my working time between these 2 passions. I work some of the time at PARC, as a Personal Trainer, Group Exercise Instructor and in Memberships, and the rest of my week I work for myself as a Naturopath / Nutritionist from a private practice in Seaford.

When I’m not at work, you’ll find me staying fit and being outdoors – running, stand up paddle boarding, at the beach, or gardening.

What was your dream job as a child and why?

Archaeologist. I was obsessed as a child, I just love ancient history!

What do you love about your work?

Helping people be a better version of themselves.

What’s something about you that most people wouldn’t know?

Well, I have a few hidden skills. I used to be an apprentice chef. But to be honest, I hated it because I love being around people and I found I couldn’t socialise. I am also a qualified bookkeeper. I got my Cert 4 in Accounting when the kids were just babies. I guess I just love learning new stuff and being challenged. I’m ever evolving!

What is the best and worst decision you’ve ever made?

Best: Definitely to go back and study as a mature age student, as a mum. The kids were 6 and 10, and it’s set us up for our life now.

Worst: I don’t think you can have a worst decision, because you can always learn… You will always get something out of every experience.

What’s on your bucket list?

Hmmm, I’m all about experiences!

  • Walk the Kokoda Track
  • Explore Egypt (yes, I’m not an archaeologist, but I still love my ancient history!)
  • New York, New York baby!

How do you balance work and life responsibilities?

My kid will always come first. But balance and structure are so important to me. Whatever I am doing, I try to work smart, not hard. I optimise the time I have available, and make the most of every minute.

You also just have to be super organised. I know what I am doing on any given day, and I love my hard copy diary! Plus, I don’t commit to things that I can’t give 100% to. Why do things half baked?

The theme for international Women’s Day this year is #EachforEqual – What does that mean to you?

Everyone should be treated equally. We are all equal.

What woman inspires you and why?

One of Australia’s most inspirational women is Turia Pitt. She is an ultramarathon fire survivor and her story is amazing. Everything she has gone through and the way she has overcome this challenge in her life is something we can all admire and learn from. She never gave up!

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🏊‍♂️🏊‍♀️ Youth Summer Swim Intensive, 8 - 12 January 🏊‍♂️🏊‍♀️

❓ Do you know a 13 – 17 year old who isn’t confident around water?
❓ Has your teenager missed out on regular swimming lessons growing up? 
❓ Do you want your teen to gain water safety skills so you can all enjoy going to the beach and pool parties? 

This January, PARC is offering a fully subsidised 5-day Youth summer swim program. 
This program is for teenagers aged 13 years to 17 years old who do not regularly participate in swimming and water safety lessons and wish to gain skills to be safer in and around water. The 5-day intensive program will group teenagers in like levels for progressive and age focused activities, aimed to improve swimming fitness and practise in water safety and rescue techniques. 

This is a really important age group for water safety awareness, with beach sessions and pool parties coming up over summer. 

WHEN: Monday 8 January – Friday 12 January 
TIME: 45minute sessions, between 10.30am-1.30pm 
WHO: Youth aged 13 - 17 years old
COST: Fully subsidised 
RSVP: Learn more and book in for free via our website here: 
Make sure you select the ‘PARC Swim Vision’ tab to see the full information and complete the form.

Any questions? Please email 

#parcfrankston #pinesfrankston @frankstoncity #learntoswim #summerswimprogram Frankston Youth Service #FrankstonCity
🎄PARC Christmas Hours 🎄

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18 Dec - 23 Dec: Hours as normal
Sunday 24 Dec: 7am-6pm
Monday 25 Dec: CLOSED
Tuesday 26 Dec: 7am-7pm
27-30 Dec: Hours as normal
Sunday 31 Dec: 7am-6pm
Monday 1 Jan: 7am-7pm
Jan 2 and beyond: Hours as normal

For a more in depth breakdown on the services available please see our website! 

🚨 REMINDER: PARC closing early on Saturday 9th December 🚨

PARC will be closing at 6pm on Saturday 9th December as our staff enjoy their end of year Christmas function. 

Please allow for extra time in planning your workout or swim as the centre will close an hour earlier. 

We will open at 7am as per normal operating hours on Sunday 10th December.

Thank you for your patience and cooperation.

Christmas sweet treat, anyone? 🍭🍬 

This is your sign to try our cafe special next time you’re in!! It’s the silly season, so come and try our special Santa shake! It’s rolling out fast this month 🎄🎅🏻 

#PARCFrankston #santashake #christmasmilkshake #yum #foodie
Still looking for the perfect gift for a special someone? 🎁 We've got you covered! 🤩

Gift your loved one something from the Peninsula's award winning recreation centre and support them in building happy, healthy habits. 

We have loads of different gift ideas from our retail range, personal training, memberships, swimming lessons, gift vouchers and more! 

Visit us in Centre to see our retail range, or let our friendly team help you purchase a voucher for your special someone. Or, check out our website and purchase a membership online. 

#PARCFrankston #christmasgift #giftinspiration
Time to re-enrol for Childcare! 🧸

A friendly reminder to enrol your child into childcare again for 2024. Everybody needs to reenrol, even if you regularly attended this year. 

You can download a copy of the form on our website. Link in bio. 

Thanks for your cooperation

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