Community recognition

By Deniliquin Pastoral Times

Some of the region’s dedicated volunteers have been officially recognised in NSW Parliament for their efforts in the community.

Pam Ellerman, Enid Seely and Matt Crothers were each recognised for their individual efforts when singled out in Community Recognition Statements presented in Parliament by NSW Member for Murray Helen Dalton.

Mrs Dalton also recognised 14 groups operating under the Men’s Shed banner in the same presentation, which included Deniliquin and Mathoura.

Certificates marking the honour were presented to local recipients by Mrs Dalton last week, during her first visit to Deniliquin since Coronavirus lockdowns were put in place.

Meeting each individually because of social distancing measures, Mrs Dalton repeated at each presentation that ‘‘we don’t give these out every day’’.

She thanked each volunteer personally for their service to the community, and encouraged them to continue giving back where they can.

Each of Mrs Dalton’s Community Recognition Statements are provided below:

Pam Ellerman (presented March 4, 2020) – Pam is one of the long-time serving members of the Deniliquin Local Health Advisory Committee, having held the position of chair for the last six years, who recently stepped down from the group. Pam was an integral member in the formation of the Naponda Hospital Auxiliary which runs and operates the Naponda Community Store and monthly Deniliquin Farmers’ Market. Some great initiatives have been achieved under Pam’s leadership of the Deniliquin LHAC. It is volunteers like Pam with her endless enthusiasm and commitment to her community that make regional towns such great places to live. Thank you Pam for your service.

NSW Member for Murray Helen Dalton with Pam Ellerman.

Men’s Sheds in Murray (June 17, 2020) – During International Men’s Health Week, it is my honour to recognise the amazing work of the 14 Men’s Sheds in my electorate. With heds beginning to reopen after closing their doors for nearly two months due to the COVID-19 restrictions, the timing could not come soon enough for many regional men facing increased levels of loneliness and inactivity. Our Men’s Sheds provide an opportunity for men to build friendships and improve their mental health and wellbeing through having a chat over a cuppa with other blokes. In regional areas alone, one in eight men will experience depression at some point in their lives and Mens’ Sheds are aiming to reduce these numbers through reducing isolation. As a community based organisations, each shed is servicing their local communities through creating products, be it garden bed containers from recycled materials or made to order pieces for locals, adding to sense of giving back to their community.

Helen Dalton with Deniliquin Menshed members (from left) John Russell, John Tonkin and Graham Bishop.
Mathoura Men’s Shed president Graham Collett and member Kay Arthur (far right) with Helen Dalton.

Enid Seely (March 24, 2020) – Today I would like to recognise Enid Seely, who has been a familiar face at the Deniliquin South Primary School’s canteen for nearly 50 years. Enid has decided to hang up her apron just shy of marking 50 full years of volunteer service to the children and families of Deniliquin South. Enid is a life member of the school, having commenced her volunteer service when her own children attended in 1970, and now retires as the third generation of the family are becoming part of the school community. Enid continued volunteering after her youngest finished primary school because she found it interesting work. Her service and dedication continued through seeing her grandchild attend and complete primary school, and with her great-grandchildren now attending Enid is hanging up the apron. But is looking forward to returning for grandparent reading.

Helen Dalton with Enid Seely.

Matt Crothers (June 3, 2020) – Today I would like to recognise a Deniliquin father of three, Matt Crothers, who during the COVID crisis recognised that many families in his community lacked computers for their children to continue home education and decided to do something about it. Matt started with fixing the three spare computers his own family no longer needed, which were donated to students within the town. The community answered the call for donations with local business dropping off their surplus equipment. Matt has been fixing up these old computers in his own time in order to see the gap between the students with and without access to the technology required for home schooling reduced in his community.

Helen Dalton with Matt Crothers.