Tuesday, 8 November 2016
Five northern women named in the latest Hidden Treasures Honour Roll represented the very best of the down-to-earth, roll-the-sleeves-up and practical nature of outstanding rural volunteers, Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall said today.
Mr Marshall has congratulated Julie Gittoes from Guyra, Cathy Duncan from Moree, Mary Gaston from Yetman, Susan Maisey of Armidale and Margaret Walker from Ben Lomond for their inclusion in the honour roll of rural women across NSW.
Mr Marshall said 90 women had been recognised in this year’s Honour Roll for the valuable volunteer work they do across NSW and the five women from his region deservedly had been included and recognised for their hard work and dedication to others.
“These women provide an enormous amount of support and are true treasures in our community,” Mr Marshall said.
“They have been nominated by others who have seen first-hand how their important work has enabled those needing assistance or local groups requiring help to flourish.”
Mr Marshall said the five represented a wide cross section of community life and were a testament of the varied and extensive roles they performed and the love they had for their communities.
“Sue, Cathy, Margaret, Mary and Julie thoroughly deserve this recognition and should be extremely proud of their nomination and in joining this roll of highly regarded rural women,” Mr Marshall said.
“This is the seventh year this important publication has been produced, recognising the role volunteers play in our everyday lives.
“We know so well that volunteering helps form the fabric of our rural and regional areas, particularly those in small and isolated towns and villages where resources can be limited, and the length and the scope of the service these five women have contributed is one of the most wonderful elements of our communities here.
“They demonstrate just what a huge generosity of spirit they have.
“Cathy Duncan is a born and bred Moree woman who is passionate about the Moree community and her Aboriginal people and this is reflected in her tireless dedication to her numerous commitments.”
Cathy was the founding CEO of the Aboriginal Employment Strategy (AES) an Indigenous managed non-for-profit recruitment company, the chair of Pius X Aboriginal Corporation and of the Beyond Empathy Local Reference Group and a member of the Moree Reconciliation Action Plan Committee and the Moree Reconciliation Group.”
Mary Gaston from Yetman had been a selfless worker and advocate for education locally, from being a canteen mum to a pottery and handicraft teacher, and particularly in religious education.
Guyra woman Julie Gittoes is the Principal of Bald Blair Public School, where she has taught for 17 years. But she’s also been a member of the Guyra Lamb and Potato Festival Committee for 30 years and has been secretary for 25 years.
For the past five years Julie has run a free homework centre two afternoons a week at Bald Blair Primary School and has been the secretary/treasurer for the Guyra Tennis Club for 20 years.
Former nurse Susan Maisey of Armidale became a teacher’s assistant in the high school hospitality department, and an amazing friend to every child that walked into her pantry office.
Six years ago Sue joined the ranks of the Rural Fire Service and went on to become the captain of the catering brigade. She also volunteers her time to other organisations such as Zonta.
And Margaret Walker from Ben Lomond has been recognised for her many contributions including to the local Country Women’s Association (CWA), the Ben Lomond War Memorial Hall Committee and the Guyra Show.
Margaret has been treasurer of the CWA for 20 years and for many years the assistant steward in the cattle section for the annual show.
Mr Marshall said the five would be presented with their formal Honour Roll certificates later this year.