Volunteer Recognition Awards

Every year a committed and largely unseen army of volunteers give of their time and skills to enhance and uplift the life of the community within the City of Ryde. The annual Volunteer Recognition Awards aim to acknowledge the contribution made by these unsung heroes.  

2014 Winners

29 nominees for the annual Volunteer Recognition Awards were recognised for their outstanding contribution to the community at a celebration held in their honour at the Civic Centre on 15 May 2014.

2014 Volunteer of the Year: Dawn Nettheim

Much of the success of the City of Ryde Eisteddfod is due to the 25 years of dedicated work and guiding hand of Dawn Nettheim.

As the Secretary, working with a large committee, she has managed this significant cultural entity from its infancy to its present position as the premier arts event in the Ryde LGA.

Dawn has coordinated every aspect of the Eisteddfod and her commitment to making sure that everything goes like clockwork it is a huge achievement.

During the peak season of April to September, Dawn works from early morning to late at night and averages at least an hour everyday for the remainder of the year. Her ability to handle a crisis is legendary and her inter-personal skills equally well known. The rewards for her commitment are many and she has been a mentor to many performers and delights in seeing them move through the ranks of junior to senior.

Dawn has a great love of the arts and is keen to share the enjoyment she has with others. Her knowledge and understanding of both the high achieving musicians, orators and dancers, their teachers and those who are newcomers to the cultural scene is unique and she is perfectly placed to be a mentor to many.

The Ryde Eisteddfod is indebted to Dawn Nettheim for her dedicated service and commitment. After a quarter of a century at the helm, Dawn is relinquishing her role as Eisteddfod Secretary and is moving to a smaller role where her wisdom, knowledge and experience will be called upon often … and given happily.

2014 Young Volunteer of the Year: Aidan Fisher

Aidan’s commitment to help young people in the Ryde area is demonstrated by his eagerness to take on the role of chairperson of the organising committee for the Ryde Youth Council’s Youth Empowerment Summit being held later this month.

A natural leader, Aidan is working hard to coordinate a wide ranging program to bring local young people together to discuss mental health and alcohol related problems. The ambition is that these young people will return to their schools and communities and also to start an ongoing support project based around youth mental health issues.

His duties including coordinating the activities of a team of energetic young people and ensuring that their tasks are well defined and achievable. He gets the best from people because he listens to what others have to say.

Other Ryde Youth Council projects Aidan has been instrumental in include the recently opened Youth Hub in Eastwood and a skate park.

Aidan juggles a full time course at Macquarie University and a part time job, plus his Youth Council responsibilities.

2014 Volunteer Group of the Year: Don and Dorothy Davidson

This dynamic Meals on Wheels duo are an inspiration to everyone as they continue to be active and volunteer well into their eighties.

Dorothy and Don Davidson are loved by all the clients they visit. Not just for the meals they have delivered regularly over the decades, but for the time they take for little chats with each and every one of their valued clients. It is these small gestures that make so many feel connected to the community and cared for.

For the organisations they volunteer with - Ryde Hunters Hill Community Services, Lantern Club Ryde and Ryde Probus – they are highly valued, reliable and hard-working volunteers that can always depend upon.

Dorothy has been volunteering for an astonishing 40 years, and Don is a relative new-comer with 26 years of service.

Asked why they choose to volunteers? Both answer that it is a service they provide willingly because they “like to help people”, especially those who are socially isolated or those who may have come home from hospital and need that extra bit of help.

Dorothy often goes that extra mile when she is on call for the Lantern Club and this is another example of this couple’s willingness to be of assistance whenever needed.

Their reward comes in the many stories of positive change their contribution has made to the lives of the community members they have connected with over their long years of service.

They are universally admired by their clients, their co-volunteers and volunteering organisations.

Find out more

For further enquiries please contact the Events Officer on 9952 8222. 

Group of people posing with their awards

Volunteer Recognition Award nominees and winners with Mayor, Clr Maggio

Page Last Updated: 16 May 2014

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