Volunteer of the Year Awards.

Everyone’s a winner when you volunteer! The #Geelong Volunteer of the Year Awards were held last night at City Hall. There were 11 diverse, worthy finalists and 7 outstanding award winners, sharing in $7K of prize money. Thanks to Kardinia Rotary Club and Volunteering Geelong for providing these awards which recognise our amazing volunteers. Thanks to the City of Greater Geelong for providing the venue. The event was sponsored by Geelong Connected CommunitiesKardinia Dental and Standby Security. The awards were presented by Geelong Mayor Bruce Harwood and Councillor Cr. Anthony Aitken – City of Greater Geelong – Windermere Ward. We were thrilled to hear the City of Greater Geelong has created a portfolio for volunteering led by Councillor Aitken.

Volunteer Awards

Humans in Geelong are proud to be one of the winners. Photo: Brandon Dellow

‘Blue in the Red House’, Sarah Madden

“Writing has been a much bigger thing for me since I’ve been in Australia. I didn’t think I was a writer before, and now I have a book coming out! My achievements are writing and mothering based. I was a 2014 Write-ability Fellow through Writers Victoria, and have had a few short things published. I have two amazing kids, my biggest achievements, even though most of what makes them great is down to them alone.”

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Sarah Madden lives in Geelong, but has been no stranger to living in diverse communities. “Before I happily ended up in Geelong, I was born in a wee place called Whangarei in the North Island of New Zealand. I can’t say I just grew up there, because I think I’ve grown up in different ways in every place I’ve lived – New Zealand, the United Arab Emirates, Australia.

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Books for a School, Sister Act

Sister Act, a class act! Pardon the pun but gardeners ‘Sister Act’ have been responsible for introducing students to exciting literature thanks to their donation of hundreds of books to Northern Bay’s Wexford Campus. One thankful student stated, “I had never read a whole book until now and you gave me a book and now, I love the BFG”. Jenn and Paulie Hardy became aware of the need for books through their client, teacher Jenny Lane.

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We hear from Jenny, “There was a need for lots of current literature that would engage students of this generation. Our school is very multi-cultural; we have students who are Koorie, Keren, Afghani and Pakistani. Many children do not have access to books to read at home. However, because of Jenn, Paulie and Louise Stanley’s generous donation, we were able to buy multiple copies of novels to set up book clubs as a part of our reading program.  It has also allowed us to gift books to the children to help foster a love of reading.”

“One Afghani girl who was given a book thanked us in tears by saying ‘This is the first new book I’ve ever owned’. Another child talked about how she loved reading her new books to her little brother at home.

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Movember

Who’s your Mo Bro? We’ve pictured three well-known Geelong identities who are participating in Movember. Our magnificent Mayor Bruce Harwood, Humans in Geelong talented team member Brandon Dellow and AWA Alliance Bank’s Mitch Grinter. Mitch is one half of the amazingly popular “Four Finger Discount” duo who host a podcast about The Simpsons. Movember raise vital funds and awareness for men’s health, specifically prostate cancer, testicular cancer and male mental health.

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The Movember Foundation started in Melbourne in 2004 and has grown into a global movement, inspiring millions to grow Mos in Movember in 21 countries. Donations raised in Australia fund programs run directly by the Movember Foundation and men’s health partners, the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia and beyondblue.

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2018 Archibald Prize

Don’t miss out on your chance to view the amazing Art Gallery of New South Wales 2018 Archibald Prize at Geelong Gallery before Nov 18th. Jules Francois Archibald was born in Geelong in 1856. He “was the founding editor of The Bulletin magazine and made a significant contribution to the development of a distinctly Australian style of literature and graphic newspaper art. His 1919 bequest (on his passing) funded the creation of a major portrait painting competition, aiming to foster portraiture, support artists and perpetuate the memory of great Australians.”

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“Each year, in accordance with the bequest, resident Australian artists are invited to submit portraits from life of men or women, preferentially ‘distinguished in Art, Letters, Science or Politics.’”

The winner receives $100,000 courtesy of ANZ, this is judged by the Trustees of the Gallery. There are also prizes for the People’s Choice and the Packing Room Prize awarded by the Art Gallery of New South Wales Gallery staff. How fitting this year that the Winner of the People’s Choice is a painting of Geelong’s own ‘Guy’ by Anne Middleton.

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Kiribati is sinking…what can we do?

Kiribati is sinking… What can we do? The country, Kiribati is made up of 33 islands and has a population of about half of Geelong. It’s a beautiful place in the South Pacific nestled between the Marshall Islands, Fiji and Western Samoa and is right on the equator. Some of you may have known it as the Gilbert Islands. It is a poor country and its people are struggling to survive because of the rising sea level and constant flooding caused by Climate Change.

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Most of Kiribati is only 2 metres above sea level and because of rising sea levels is subject to frequent flooding. The inhabitants have started to build a wall to keep them safe but this is only a short-term solution. The people of Kiribati are also growing mangroves to help protect their vulnerable coastlines from further erosion. Choi Yeeting has been the official Climate Change Commissioner since 2010 and among other things, he is concerned about sanitation problems.

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Miranda Luby

“I always wanted to be a writer. My other passion is animals – who’d have thought I’d get to marry these two loves? I’m currently the Senior Reporter for Werribee Open Range Zoo. Work as a writer has taken me to more than 50 countries but I call the Surf Coast my home.”

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We had the pleasure of interviewing award-winning writer Miranda Luby.

“I can remember being on my bed in tears. ‘I’ll never find a job in writing,’ I’d said to my Mum. She told me to believe in myself and that I was on the right path. Remembering this makes me appreciate how far I’ve come. I finally gained an internship at the Geelong Addy. After 6 weeks, someone left and I was hired. I wrote for GT magazine for 4 years and had a wonderful female leader and mentor in Kylie Oliver. This is where I started to learn about story telling.

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