North Sydney Community Awards Hosted by Annabel Crabb
North Sydney Community Awards
Each year I organise the North Sydney Community Awards to honour those volunteering and working in our community. This year the Awards were held on 27 September 2018 and shone a very bright light on all those who serve our community. It was great to have so many people join us for a special celebration and enjoy the witty reflections of ABC journalist and commentator Annabel Crabb.
The North Sydney Community Awards are a wonderful community celebration attended by state and local government representative, community leaders and residents. Cammeray Public School Band will be providing music at the ceremony.
Major Award Winners
North Sydney Young Person of the Year:
- Francesca Timar: Francesca was the inaugural Biamunga Captain at Monte Sant’ Angelo Mercy College, in charge of encouraging active involvement and engagement with Aboriginal issues for members of the community. She has participated in cultural immersion at Wreck Bay and helped to paint a mural for the local childcare centre. She has maintained an active involvement in the Biamunga group since finishing school.
North Sydney Older Australian of the Year:
- Ada Belcher: Ada has volunteered at the Crows Nest St Vincent de Paul shop since 1968. She manages the store and all welfare requests that come through it, providing food, clothes and blankets to disadvantaged people in the community. She also coordinates volunteers who are completing their Duke of Edinburgh Awards.
North Sydney Community Group of the Year:
- Sydney Community Services: Sydney Community Services matches volunteers to a client with shared interests. The volunteers regularly go to visit their partners, linking residents to the broader community and reducing isolation and loneliness. Visits are relaxed with volunteers chatting, listening to music, playing games and reading together.
- Mina Ferguson (Waverton) – Monte Sant’ Angelo Mercy College: ranked in the top 50 in the world for sailing. Recently competed at championships in Thailand.
- Tully White (North Sydney) – Monte Sant’ Angelo Mercy College: Open Women’s Longboard Champion, Australian Surfing Nationals. Junior National Champion two years in a row.
- Paul Tout (North Sydney) – North Shore Rowing Club: coach at North Shore Rowing Club. Regularly represents the club at local events and maintains the boats.
- Graeme Priddy (Lane Cove) – Lane Cove Rugby Union Club: fundraiser, match day organiser and council liaison. Graeme also volunteers at Lane Cove West Public School and Birrahlee Kindergarten.
- Patrick O’Farrell (Longueville) – St Joseph’s College: volunteer at Marist Children’s Camp, St Anne’s Nursing Home, nominee for Lions Youth of the Year.
- Jessica Elliott (Cremorne) – Monte Sant’ Angelo Mercy College: volunteer with St Vincent de Paul Night Patrol, Juvenile Justice Minister, paralegal for Aboriginal Legal Service.
- Terence Chiang (Crows Nest) – Crows Nest Centre: volunteer in Homework Help program and mentor for younger immigrant children.
- Elma Kearney (Lane Cove): volunteer with Scouts and Girl Guides, Lane Cove Progress Association. Principal petitioner for footbridge over Epping Road.
- Chris Blower (McMahons Point) – Fine Music FM: volunteer since 2008, chair of Programme Committee from 2010-2011 and 2015-2017, assist with publication of programming guide.
- Maureen Meers (North Sydney) – Fine Music FM: volunteer since 1994, Treasurer from 1996-1999, founding member of jazz committee in 2012.
- Barbara Noden (North Sydney) – Stanton Precinct: volunteer and office bearer with Stanton Precinct for over 20 years.
- Diane Fischer (North Sydney) – Stanton Precinct: volunteer with Stanton Precinct. Advocate for local residents around traffic, open space and amenities.
- Joan Street (Milsons Point) – Lavender Bay Precinct Committee: volunteer with Lavender Bay Precinct, founder of Wendy’s Secret Garden Volunteer Group, involved with North Sydney Rotary and ran a Northern Territory Aboriginal Foundation.
- Jacqui Axford (Wollstonecraft) – Fine Music FM: volunteer since 2004, regularly assists organising fundraising events. Director of the Board from 2010-2014.
- Susan Ping Kee (Neutral Bay) – Fine Music FM: volunteer librarian since 2011, manages broadcast CD library of over 16,000 titles.
- Joy Stephen (St Leonards) – Pink Ladies: volunteer since 2005. Co-ordinates and oversees the Pink Ladies at Royal North Shore Hospital, runs fundraisers for the group.
- Greg Griffiths (Hunters Hill) – Probus Club of Hunters Hill: volunteer since 2002, President in 2006. Local Justice of the Piece and co-ordinator of Linley Point Neighbourhood Watch.
- Jim McCredie (Chatswood) – Chatswood West Community Fire Unit: initiated Chatswood West Community Fire Unit, former Vice-President and President of Willoughby Federation of Progress Associations.
- Greg Blainey (Wollstonecraft) – Waverton Hub: founding member of Waverton Hub, board member and IT manager. Volunteer at St Mary’s Father Tony’s Christmas Luncheon.
- William Whyte (Chatswood) – Windsor Gardens Retirement Village: grows and cultivates vegetable gardens, Legatee, fundraiser for veterans’ organisations.
- Mark Crew (Castlecrag) – Northbridge Sea Scouts: scout leader for 27 years. President of Castlecrag Conservation Society and life member of Haven Amphitheatre after helping to rebuild the stage in 1992.
- Michael Murphy (Hunters Hill) – Hunters Hill High School: volunteer with Sailors Bay Sea Scouts, leads Duke of Edinburgh expeditions, oversaw redevelopment of Hunters Hill High School.
- Neil Hopkins (Gladesville) – Hunters Hill High School P&C: oversaw the restoration of the grounds and gardens of the school.
- Deborah Slack (Gladesville) – Hunters Hill High School P&C: volunteer since 2009. Helps run uniform shop and canteen, key fundraiser for recent refurbishments.
- Elizabeth Kirkby (Crows Nest) – Crows Nest Centre: volunteer for Meals on Wheels for 21 years.
- Kerry Hammond (Crows Nest) – Crows Nest Centre: volunteer for Meals on Wheels for 50 years. Mentor for volunteers with special needs.
- John Seale (Crows Nest) – Crows Nest Centre: volunteer for Meals on Wheels for 15 years.
- Andrew Curtin (Hunters Hill) – Hunters Hill Sailing Club: current President of the Sailing Club, helped rebuild outdoor area at Riverside Preschool and with the redevelopment of Villa Maria Primary School.
- Bill Wallace (Lane Cove) – Lane Cove Council: Lane Cove Town Crier, regularly attends events with the Council and the community.
- Mark Kilmurry (Kirribilli) – Ensemble Theatre: volunteer since 2002. Introduced free performances for students and runs mentoring programs for upcoming directors.
- France O’Brien (Naremburn) – Naremburn Progress Association: first female President of the association. Helped to form Willoughby Area Action Group.
- Simon Cox (Chatswood) – North Sydney United Football Club: organiser of Ruby’s Day fundraiser for Leukaemia Foundation, raising over $40,000.
- Margaret Schnitzler (Hunters Hill) – Hunters Hill High School P&C: President of P&C. Helps oversee multiple sub-committees and run the canteen and uniform shop.
- Janice Hui (Crows Nest) – Crows Nest Centre: founded ‘Reach Your Potential’ which helps skilled migrants find work in Australia.
- Bernadette Dattatreyan (Crows Nest) – Crows Nest Centre: volunteer with Meals on Wheels for ten years.
- Jay Allen (North Sydney) – Melanoma Institute: community coordinator at Melanoma Institute. Walked from Brisbane to Sydney in 29 days as a fundraiser, raised over $250,000 for the institute.
- Jason Aisbett (North Sydney) – Northside Community Services: volunteers for Disabled Alternative Road Travel Service, firefighter and volunteer with Australian Civil Air Patrol.
- Marillyn Stewart (Northbridge) – Northbridge Progress Association: produced quarterly magazine from 2013-2016.
- Helen Gulson (Northbridge) – Northbridge Progress Association: produced quarterly magazine from 2013-2016.
- Josephine McBride (Hunters Hill) – Hunters Hill Ladies Probus Club: member since 2001, President, Secretary and Activities Director. Produces monthly bulletin.
- Jason Li (Cammeray) – State Emergency Service: volunteer since 2012, also volunteers with St John Ambulance, army reserves and runs a Lions Club.
- Clare Arnold (North Sydney) – Uniting Local Area Co-ordination Team: created a support desk at Kirribilli Neighbourhood Centre, runs NDIS workshops in the area.
- Lynette Partridge (Lane Cove West) – Lane Cove Sustainability Group: volunteers in Lane Cove West Residents’ Association, Lane Cove Streamwatch and bushcare groups. Also active in her local Neighbourhood Watch group.
- Paul Hackett (Artarmon) – Lane Cove Apex Club: volunteer with Wayside Chapel, Lane Cove Community Aid and St Vincent de Paul, as well as Lane Cove Apex Club.
- NSW Justices Association, Lower North Shore: provide free Justice of the Peace services, host monthly meeting and run training sessions for the community.
- Fine Music FM: first community radio station on the air. Run by volunteers, currently have over 300 volunteers who program, present and provide administration support.
- Gig Buddies Sydney: match people with disabilities with volunteers who share mutual interests.
- Buddha’s Light International Association: host cultural festivals and events, provide support to local community members.
- Castlecrag Progress Association: formed in 1925, have worked on projects such as the Haven Amphitheatre, bi-annual fair, produce a newsletter and campaign to preserve services in the local area.
- Uniting Local Area Coordination Team: formed a partnership with the Kirribilli Neighbourhood Centre to present sessions to residents, host a regular hot desk at Lane Cove Library and provide free workshops to the local community.