Friday, April 19, 2024

NSW SES member named Volunteer of the Year

Anthia Kollaras from the NSW SES Waverley-Woollahra Unit has won the Adult Volunteer of the Year award at the NSW Volunteer of the Year Awards ceremony.

Ms Kollaras (pictured) has contributed thousands of hours to her community through the NSW SES in 14 years of service.

She also received Waverley Council’s biennial Local Hero Award earlier this year in the Strengthening Community Commendation category.

“Anthia is an inspiration to all volunteers,” said NSW SES Waverley-Woollahra Unit Commander, Jimmy Burnett.

“She supports everybody and gives up countless hours to serve her community. Anthia’s willingness to mentor everyone from a new Unit Commander to brand new members shows what a great role model she is.”

Ms Kollaras said winning the award was a humbling experience.

“It makes me quite emotional to think I was nominated by the people I work with. They’re amazing people,” she said.

Also a finalist for the Adult Volunteer of the Year was Shane Griffin, Deputy Unit Commander of the Murray Capability Unit.

Shane previously won the Riverina Regional Adult Volunteer award for his service, which included two deployments to Lismore during the 2022 floods, as well as two deployments during the Black Summer bushfires at Tumut and Glenn Innes.

In addition to serving with the NSW SES, Shane volunteers with Meals on Wheels.

Rodney Feltham from the NSW SES Ulladulla Unit was a finalist for NSW Senior Volunteer of the Year after winning the South Coast Senior Volunteer of the year award.

He has served as the NSW SES Deputy Local Commander and Deputy Unit Commander in more than 28 years at the NSW SES.

Rodney received a Commissioner’s Unit Citation in March 2023 for outstanding commitment and exemplary service to the South Coast community during the Black Summer Currowan bushfire.

Yasmin Jimmieson, a dual member of the Muswellbrook and Armidale-Dumaresq Units, was nominated for NSW Young Volunteer of the Year after winning the Hunter region Young Volunteer of the Year award.

Yasmin was the winner of the 2023 State Emergency Service Officer of the Year award at the Rotary Emergency Service Community Awards (RESCA).

Yasmin also volunteers with numerous other youth organisations including Little Dreamers, The Young Carers, One Door Mental Health “On Fire” youth program and the Beautiful Minds Youth Enrichment Program as a Team Leader.

The NSW SES also received a Special Commendation Award for responding to community needs.

NSW SES Deputy Commissioner Damien Johnston said this year’s SES winner and finalists in the NSW Volunteer of the Year Awards embody the highest values of the Service.

“Our volunteers in this year’s awards have given so much to their communities. They are true role models and we celebrate their success,” he said.

The NSW Volunteer of the Year Awards are in their 17th year and have grown to become one of the largest celebrations of volunteering across Australia. They are an annual program run by The Centre for Volunteering to recognise the outstanding work of volunteers in every region across NSW.

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