Resident Spotlight: Anita Morrisey

08 October 2021

To us, living in a Stockland community involves more than just your home, it’s about finding a place where you belong. It’s our passion to build happy, healthy, sustainable communities that thrive.

To shine a light on feeling connected during periods of uncertainty, we spoke to Willowdale resident Anita Morrissey who reflected on her passion for bringing people together. This story demonstrates how, at Willowdale, we have residents who embody exactly what we hoped to build for those who chose Willowdale to be their home.

Willowdale resident Anita Morrissey moved to the Stockland community in January 2019 and has since made great strides in connecting with other Willowdale residents; particularly with those from multicultural backgrounds or who are unfamiliar with Sydney’s south west. As a full-time CBD worker, she’s passionate about keeping residents who work full-time or don’t have children involved in community activities.

“I don’t have children of my own and I work full-time so I didn’t quite fit into the mothers groups and I was still at work when fitness classes and book clubs were taking place. By chatting to different people in the community, I realised I wasn’t the only one who fell through the cracks and there were common experiences between a lot of us women in Willowdale.”

Just like Stockland, Anita is committed to building friendly, connected communities. She has navigated through COVID-19 restrictions during the past year to bring people together both online and offline. This dedication led her to help forge new relationships and drive local initiatives, such as an International Women’s Day dinner and meet and greet picnics.

“Connecting with other people in the community has been a highlight of my time at Willowdale. A lot of people have reached out to me sharing their stories when they first moved into the community and struggled to get to know people. That’s why it’s been so great to connect with residents who come from all walks of life.”

Off the back of these initiatives, Anita, alongside a small group of other Willowdale residents, has been instrumental in driving awareness for the Women of Willowdale Facebook group 一an initiative that began as a dinner with 20 ladies to celebrate International Women’s Day. Since the Facebook group started, Anita has been sharing the group’s link so women in other Willowdale Facebook groups are encouraged to join. The group has now grown to an extraordinary 200 members in less than six months.

“The Women of Willowdale group aims to bring women in the community together over common and shared experiences. Whether it's discussing the home building process, new amenities in the community, upcoming events or societal issues, the group offers women a safe space to talk about their passions and interests.”

Aside from the International Women’s Day dinner, the Women of Willowdale group also encourages locals to participate in cultural celebrations together, such as Ramadan, regardless of their background or religious affiliation.

“The Women of Willowdale group has been a great way to stay connected and feel a sense of community spirit during lockdown. Women have been sharing food recipes, arts and crafts activities and information about local charities that are helping vulnerable people in the community. It really shows how connected the people of Willowdale are.”

Reflecting on her time living in a Stockland community, Anita says people in the Willowdale are altruistic and always happy to help each other, which makes it a lovely place to live. She also loves the growing amounts of green spaces available in Willowdale.

“At Willowdale people feel connected. There are lots of community groups for people with different interests. There’s groups of birdwatchers, basketball enthusiasts, bookworms and dog lovers. There truly is something for everyone and this makes for a vibrant, liveable community.”

Whilst NSW residents remain in lockdown, Stockland and Anita encourage all residents to try to stay connected online, check in with your neighbours by sending a message and enjoy the green spaces safely.