2018 Australia Day Awards and Citizenship Ceremony
Citizen of the Year — John Jennings
For 35 years, John has dedicated his time to volunteering in the community.
The former school principal is one of the main faces associated with promoting and preserving the history of the community, having written 8 books on local history.
He served for 23 years as President and Secretary and is a life member of Seymour Historical Society.
He is also a life member of the Australian Light Horse Memorial Park committee, leading many tours around the park and giving talks on its history.
A Seymour resident, John is described as a dedicated, well-respected and loved member of the community for his efforts in highlighting the history of the region.
Young Citizen of the Year — Dellareece Matson
Dellareece has been volunteering for almost 12 years and started at just 8 years of age.
She began volunteering at the Kilmore Quilters, where she helped at events, was on the committee and organised fundraisers.
She has also been a member of the Mitchell Youth Council, volunteered for the Kilmore 3764 project, is a long-standing community radio volunteer, and is part of the Volume committee, helping organise events such as Battle of the Bands and the Colour Dash.
A Kilmore resident, Dellareece is described as hard-working, selfless and kind hearted with fantastic community spirit, highlighted by her willingness to help out whenever needed.
Access and Inclusion Champion — Riding for the Disabled Seymour
Riding for the Disabled Seymour has been helping improve the lives of students from Seymour Special School for over 30 years.
The group gives children the chance to take part in activities with horses, build confidence and allow them achieve things they otherwise wouldn’t.
The group is run by passionate volunteers who use horse riding as a tool to help those with a disability engage in their community.
Not only do the volunteers run groups each week, they also take care of the horses, keeping them fed and watered.
Their role requires great patience, kindness, understanding, compassion and communication.
Community Event of the Year — Community Open Day at Kilmore Men’s Shed
The Community Open Day at Kilmore Men’s Shed on 19 October 2017 was a highly successful event that gave the wider community an insight into the group’s fantastic work.
The event highlighted the comradely of the group and was a fantastic opportunity to network, connect, build relationships and have a look at some valuable projects the group produces for the community.
Throughout the year, this group created a ‘buddy bench’ for St Patrick’s Primary School, tea trollies for the Wallan Senior Citizens, and outdoor seats for Caladenia Nursing Home.
The Citizenship Ceremony was held in Broadford on 26 January, 2018.
A large number of residents took their oath or pledge to become Australian.
Mitchell Shire Mayor Rhonda Sanderson was joined by Federal Member for McEwen Rob Mitchell during the ceremony.