2008 State Winners
Winners of the 2008 NSW Volunteer of the Year Award were announced at a gala ceremony on Friday, 5 December, at Sydney's Parliament House. ABC Radio host Adam Spencer MC'd the ceremony and and the NSW Minister for Volunteering, the Hon. Graham West, presented the Awards.
Layne Beachley, the most successful female surfer of all time, seven-time world champion, and Founder and Chief Executive of the Layne Beachley Aim for the Stars Foundation, has been awarded the inaugural NSW Volunteer Ambassador of the Year Award.
Ashfield resident Shu Fen Wang has been named 2008 NSW Volunteer of the Year by the NSW Minister for Volunteering, the Hon. Graham West, in the ceremony. Shu was awarded for her work over the past ten years with the West Region Chinese Association. She has been actively involved in a number of efforts to assist Chinese migrants in Western Sydney become more accustomed to and involved in Australian life.
Lorraine Clark of Warringah was named 2008 NSW Senior Volunteer of the Year for her 18-year contribution to the Special Olympics program. As a swimming and basketball coach Lorraine developed a skills-based program, eventuating in athletes achieving a level of competency which made access to training and competition in these sports a realistic goal. The success of her coaching can be measured by the large number of athletes who now compete at Regional, State and National Competitions.
2008 NSW Youth Volunteer of the Year Krystle Marsh works with St Vincent de Paul and the Australian Red Cross. Krystle expanded her volunteering activities by assisting in running the Warilla High School Breakfast club and planning and coordinating the Warilla High/ St Vincent de Paul 'Grandparents Day' Seniors Week celebrations. Krystle has just completed her HSC at Warilla High School.
Optus' IT Commercial Director, Karen Carmichael, and Optus have been recognised for mobilising an exemplary Employee Volunteering program at Lurnea High School and been awarded the 2008 NSW Corporate Volunteer of the Year. Through utilising her business contacts from 16 years with Optus, Karen offered the students work experiences far beyond the scope of their limited personal and school networks.
The Centre for Volunteering will donate $1,500 to the not-for-profit organisation of the State Winner's choice and $1,000 to the Youth and Senior winners' nominated organisation. All winners were presented with a trophy by Minister West.
Convenor of the judging panel and Chair of The Centre for Volunteering, Joy Woodhouse said selection of the winners was difficult. "I wish that everyone who was nominated could win because they are all making valuable contributions to their communities."