In 2005, Production Administrator and Bookkeeper, Maria Castillo, left the Philippines with her family to begin a new life in Canada. Now several years later, this published poet and self-confessed board game aficionado, says working at the Roundhouse is one of the best reasons to wake up in the morning.
My motto for life is never stop learning!
JS: With two job titles, Maria, how do you balance your workload at the Roundhouse?
MC: There seems to be a never-ending cycle of unfinished tasks waiting for me on my desk. Every week I try to devote equal hours to each department: 20 hours to bookkeeping and 20 hours to production.
JS: What are some of your specific responsibilities?
MC: I take care of all remittances, monthly, quarterly, and annual reports, and all government payments. With only one accountant and 14 departments at the Roundhouse, plus the board of directors to report to, it is very important for me to be organized and stay on top of every financial situation.
JS: So, you must have a professional background in finance?
MC: Yes, I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the Philippines and obtained the equivalent of a CGA there. I was working on my master’s degree in business administration, too, when my Canadian immigration application was approved. When I arrived in Vancouver in 2005, I also completed a professional accounting program.
JS: Do you also have an interest in arts and recreation?
MC: Although I have no background in arts and recreation, I have a passion for poetry reading and writing. In fact, the UK Library of Poetry has published two of my best poems.
JS: Are there are any other surprises you can reveal about yourself?
MC: I can admit that Chess and Scrabble are my two best board games, but I’m not so skilled at swimming or riding a bike. These are two activities I would most like to learn, in fact, I’d say that my motto for life is never stop learning!
JS: What have you learned about working at the Roundhouse?
I’ve learned the Roundhouse has a great history. I once saw a 19th century picture of the original Roundhouse where the railway workers were silhouetted against the train. To me, it’s like their voices are still echoing through the walls of the brick building. I find it humbling to know that each one of those workers left their mark on the Roundhouse.
JS:How do you think the staff at today’s Roundhouse will leave their mark?
MC: In our small way we are contributing to a better workplace, a better community and a better world.
Thank you, Maria.
Meet the Roundhouse is a feature blog series published on the first Friday of the month. Jacqueline Steuart interviews staff members so that you can learn a little bit more about the people who help to make the Roundhouse a hive of creative and recreational activity, and the best community centre in Vancouver.
By Jacqueline Steuart, Roundhouse Blog Team. Jacqueline is a graduate of the Print Futures: Professional Writing program at Douglas College, New Westminster. She is pleased to write about the dynamic and diverse culture of the Roundhouse.