2020 Woollahra Citizenship Awards announced

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2020 Woollahra Citizenship Awards announced

Published 6 April 2020

Congratulations to Barry Joseph who has been named the 2020 Woollahra Citizen of the Year for his outstanding volunteer contribution to our local community.

Barry has volunteered for more than 30 years with local organisations including Rose Bay Rotary, the Australian Friends of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Montefiore.

The Woollahra Citizenship Awards celebrate the individuals and groups who have demonstrated excellent citizenship by helping to improve the lives of the people of Woollahra and the wider community.

Woollahra’s Senior Citizen of the Year and Youth Award winners and individuals and groups who made outstanding contributions in categories including Contribution to Community and Contribution to the Natural Environment were also recognised.

Barry said it was a “wonderful thrill" to win Citizen of the Year.

"I have always enjoyed helping people and I think it is so important to give back to the community," Barry said.

"It gives me great pleasure to help people."

Mayor of Woollahra, Susan Wynne, said she was delighted to formally acknowledge the achievements of these remarkable people within our community.

“In Woollahra, we are blessed to have many amazing community-minded residents who are dedicated to helping and inspiring others and making our local area a better place to live,” the Mayor said.

“Congratulations to all of our winners and thank you for everything you do for our community”.

Citizen of the Year Award - Barry Joseph

Barry is a well known and highly respected member of the Woollahra community for his wonderful long-term contribution as a volunteer. He has been a very active member of Rose Bay Rotary for more than 30 years and an active participant in Rose Bay Rotary charity and fundraising events. He was Federal Executive Director of the Australian Friends of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem for 15 years prior to becoming the Honorary President of the NSW Division. Barry has been a Board Member for 18 years of Montefiore. He is a member of the investment committee and co-chairs the admissions committee.

Seniors Award – Colin McQueen

Colin has been a volunteer with the SES (and its predecessor agencies) for more than 50 years. He has had an enormous influence on all the volunteers he interacts with. He is the ‘go-to’ person in the unit whenever someone isn't sure how to do something. He is a supportive mentor and a skilled trainer and team leader. Read more about Colin’s story.

Youth Award – Anika Deva

Anika, a Year 12 student at Ascham, has been recognised for her remarkable efforts as a volunteer and as a proactive young community leader. She has volunteered at Crown Street and Double Bay Schools at their after school care programs and Tech@Ascham, a program assisting community seniors with the use of their personal IT devices. Anika has committed herself to many projects outside of Ascham, including crocheting and selling items with 100% of sales going to the Sparcle Foundation, her own charity. Anika also designed and undertook a fundraiser for the Fred Hollows Foundation, and more recently completed some knitting for the Aminata Foundation, Koalas and Kangaroos affected by the bush fires and blankets for the homeless.

Contribution to the Community Award – Laya Slavin

More than 10 years ago, Laya and her husband, Rabbi Dr Dovid, created Our Big Kitchen, an industrial-sized kitchen in the heart of Bondi, to provide a space for the community to connect and cook hearty nutritious meals to serve the needy. Laya’s contribution and commitment to the community is nobody in the kitchen’s vicinity goes hungry and that members of the local community from every denomination can have a place where they can connect with other individuals in a meaningful way. She is constantly looking for new ways to make the lives of those around her better by continuing to make regular visits with other compassionate volunteers to hospitals, nursing homes, women's refuges, homeless shelters and individuals’ homes. She has also opened a wig lending library to provide those suffering cancer with a wig as beautiful as their own hair.

Contribution to the Community – Highly Commended – Merle Ware

Merle has supported mothers by visiting them on a weekly basis as a volunteer in the Mum For Mum NCJWA program. Merle has been hailed as a ‘lifesaver’ by many local mums and friends. Merle has expanded her volunteer role within the program and helps the paid professional staff doing intakes of new recipient mothers to deal with the ever-increasing demand for the Mum For Mum NCJWA services.

Contribution to the Natural Environment – Robert Joyner

Rob is the President of the Paddington Community Garden, which celebrated its 10 year anniversary this year. Rob led the garden's construction team which installed raised garden beds, built a rotunda and pergolas, installed water tanks and compost tumblers and facilitated many other projects that have seen the garden develop into the wonderful community asset that it is today. Rob's commitment to preserving the local natural environment influences all of the practices adopted in the garden relating to organic gardening, recycling of green waste and watering wisely.

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