Indigo Shire’s outstanding citizens recognised at Australia Day Awards

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Barnawatha resident Pauline Fisher has been named Indigo Shire’s Citizen of the Year.

Mayor, Jenny O’Connor said the award recognises Pauline’s significant contribution to helping those less fortunate within the community.

“I am honoured to announce Pauline as Indigo Shire’s Citizen of the Year. Pauline’s dedication to helping her community is to be admired.

“Thanks to Pauline, over $50,000 has been raised over the years through the Cancer Council’s Biggest Morning Tea. She coordinates the Barnawartha Australia Day breakfast each year as well as the Anzac Day breakfast, fundraises for the Barnawartha Hall and the Local Barnawartha Church.”

Pauline also organised a “Doors Day” at Barnawartha to show visitors Barnawartha’s history and to promote the town, and she raised guide dogs for 12 years.

She also helps at the Rutherglen Show dinner and with fund raising, as well as helping to prepare meals for those in need once a month for the Church at Rutherglen and delivers meals to unwell residents.

Pauline is also a dedicated volunteer at the Rutherglen Anglican Opportunity Shop.

Pauline was thrilled, yet humbled at the recognition, saying “I don’t do these things for awards, so I was so surprised to be recognised in this way. It is so important to me to help anyone less fortunate, so this award doesn’t mean I’ve finished helping my community yet.”

Councillor O’Connor also announced Genevieve Love from Stanley as Indigo Shire’s Young Citizen of the Year,.

When Genevieve, 20, lost her pastry chef job due to COVID-19 she decided to turn the negative into a positive.

She created a Free Morning Tea for Seniors Over 65 every Tuesday in Stanley for 11 weeks from April 2020.

Councillor O’Connor said, “Genevieve’s Free Morning Teas gave everyone in Stanley something to look forward to in what was a challenging time of isolation, especially for seniors.

“Not all Stanley seniors own a car, so with only one café that’s only open part-time and no bus service to Beechworth, the community benefitted greatly from Genevieve’s service.”

Word soon spread of Genevieve’s efforts with local businesses donating ingredients which allowed Genevieve to expand the morning teas to include free delivery to seniors who were isolating at home.

Not only did Genevieve’s project look after Stanley’s seniors, the deliveries to homes also became something of interest for neighbouring children at home doing online schooling.

When receiving the news of her award, Genevieve said, “I wasn’t really expecting it, but it does mean a great deal to me. It means that what I’ve done has made a real difference, and it’s so nice to be recognised for something I was happy to do for my local community anyway. “

Councillor O’Conner said “It’s this kind of selfless attitude that shows how fortunate we are to have young people like Genevieve in our community.

“Pauline and Genevieve are both so deserving of this recognition. After the year it has been, I think it’s incredibly important that we acknowledge and show the people who have gone above and beyond to help our communities, just how much their hard work means to us all.”

Indigo Shire’s outstanding citizens will be recognised at Australia Day Award ceremonies around the Shire today.

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