Page 1478 - Week 05 - Tuesday, 9 May 2017

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Last night I attended the Volunteering and Contact ACT annual volunteer of the year awards, along with some of my colleagues. I think Ms Le Couteur, Mr Steel, Mr Gentleman and Minister Stephen-Smith were there. I would like to read out the names, for the benefit of everyone here. The volunteer of the year was awarded to Jayanti Gupta for her work with multicultural and women’s organisations. Last year, of course, the winner was Jeanette Purkis, an autism advocate. For the volunteer team of the year, King & Wood Mallesons were highly commended for their work with Marymead, and the winner was the Hartley Hall markets. Many of us have probably been to the Hall markets.

For the young volunteer of the year, Emily Capper was highly commended for her work with Camp Quality, and the winner was Kate Barton, who volunteers with the St Vincent de Paul Canberra-Goulburn area. For the senior volunteer of the year, John Williams was highly commended. He has been volunteering with the Boys Brigade for 50 years. The winner was Linda Barry of St Vincent de Paul.

For the profound influence award, Buried in Treasure, which works with people with hoarding issues, was highly commended. The winner was Rosemary Drabsch of the ACT Cancer Council for her work raising money and organising the Relay for Life, another event that we are probably all very familiar with.

For the innovation award, Chris Fitzgerald was highly commended, and the winner was Orange Sky Laundry. For the thought and leadership award, the Zonta Club of Canberra Breakfast was highly commended, and the winner was Juliet Moody of the Fearless Initiative. Canberra’s choice went to the ACT volunteers in policing program, and the go beyond award went to Mark Bell for his work with his earthmoving machine in re-landscaping the entire Tuggeranong BMX facility.

Many other volunteers were nominated, and a nomination in this area demonstrates the huge contribution these people give to our community each and every day, without any expectation of being acknowledged. I noted last night that Volunteering and Contact ACT use the term “award recipients”. Their CEO explained to me that everyone who volunteers is a winner. Just because you win an award on the night does not mean that you are the winner; everyone is a winner. I thought that was a really nice way of explaining it.

I will quickly run through the list of volunteers: the achievement centre of Canberra high; ACT Policing volunteers in policing program; ACT Rural Fire Service training team; ACT wildlife wombat mange program; ACT Wildlife Inc; Aranda Primary School Greening Australia group; Australian Breastfeeding Association ACT-Southern New South Wales Region; Blue Door Drop-in Centre; Brian Rhyneheart; Building Buddies; Buried in Treasure volunteers; Campbell High School; Chris Fitzgerald; Claire Rooks; Communities@Work’s community pantry; Country to Canberra; Danny Ryding; Dianne Donaldson; Emily Capper; Gillian Helyar and Jeff Ibbotson of Cycling Without Age; Hartley Hall markets volunteer team; Intensive Care volunteer team; Jayanti Gupta; John Riley; John Williams; Juliet Moody; Kate Barton; King & Wood Mallesons; Kippax Christmas Appeal “Let’s Give Everyone a

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