Eurobodalla volunteers show how it’s done

THRILLED: An absolutely thrilled Megan Garrett learned yesterday the shire’s RSPCA branch had won Volunteer Team of the Year for southern NSW.We knew they were great, but now the whole of southern NSW has applauded the Eurobodalla’s inspired and inspiring volunteers.

Yesterday Marine Rescue stalwart John Young, of Bodalla, was named Volunteer of the Year for southern NSW in the Centre for Volunteering’s annual awards in Cooma.

The member of the Narooma Marine Rescue branch had earlier been named Adult Volunteer of the Year.

Joining him on the podium were volunteers from the Eurobodalla RSPCA, who won Volunteer Team of the Year.

The awards were announced yesterday afternoon in a ceremony involving volunteers from across southern NSW.

The Centre for Volunteering’s CEO Gemma Rygate said the annual awards recognised the outstanding work of volunteers across NSW.

“Volunteers are our unsung heroes,” she said.

“They make a huge contribution to the community and don’t seek anything in return.

“These awards highlight some of the 2.4 million volunteers in NSW and the unseen work they do – from fire fighting to suicide prevention to patient transport and more.

“Volunteers often fill the gaps in communities – they see a local need and step in to help others.

“That’s why local volunteering is invaluable and it’s clearly very strong in southern NSW.”

Mr Young was honoured for his 40 years as a volunteer with several organisations.

As the unit co-ordinator of Marine Rescue NSW in Narooma, he co-ordinates rescue operations for marine emergencies, liaises with other marine rescue agencies, trains volunteers and educates people on boating safety and training.

He took only six weeks off from his volunteering duties to undergo cancer treatment.

His colleagues said John has shown them volunteering could be a way of life that enriched both the volunteer and community.

The RSPCA Eurobodalla branch began four years ago to improve animal welfare in the region.

The team of 25 people supports owners unable to keep their pets, by placing animals in a foster home until a permanent home is found.

The team has raised awareness of animal welfare and raised funds for education programs.

Eurobodalla RSPCA branch president Megan Garrett was delighted her team was recognised.

“A lot of work goes into being a volunteer, but it is very rewarding,” the former animal nurse said.

“It’s often extremely hard to fit it in when you are working full time, but this is a team effort.

“Everyone has worked hard and it’s wonderful to work with so many wonderful, like-minded people.

“We always try to keep our money in the Eurobodalla and have had huge success with our Million Paws Walk this year.

“We’ve some great events, including an RSPCA pop-up shop in April, which was a fantastic initiative.

“We work very hard in the community to raise awareness about animal cruelty, but also provide assistance to pet owners with desexing.

“We are also unique in that we are a shelter-free branch of the RSPCA, so we rely heavily on the support of foster carers.

“We are always in need of more foster carers.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.