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2021 Australia Day Awards - Honour Roll

Australia Day Award winners 2021

From left to right: Maree Edwards MP – State Member for Bendigo West, Young Citizen of the Year – Jade Bujeya, , Citizen of the Year – Ian Gallagher, Senior Citizen of the Year – Lorraine le Plastrier, Mount Alexander Shire Mayor, Cr Tony Cordy, Community Event of the Year – The Castlemaine Rotary Truck Show, President Christine Barkla.

Citizen of the Year – Ian Gallagher

Ian Gallagher is a quiet achiever who is considerate, respectful and always ready to lend a hand. He has been a volunteer corrections officer for 15 years where he has earned the trust, respect and co-operation of offenders under his charge. Ian has also been an active member and full time volunteer of the Lions Club in Castlemaine for 15 years. Through this he chops and distributes firewood for locals. Ian is the driving force and key contributor for all Lions Club events as well as maintaining, transporting and operating the Lions food catering caravan.

Ian contributes to raising funds for the local community, including the Lions McDonald Hill Mount Alexander Shire Accommodation and Respite Group (MASARG) Respite House, and Castlemaine hospital among other community providers. He has also served on the committee of the Castlemaine and District Old Boys School Association for 12 years as well as being the President in 2018/2019. The association raises money to donate books and educational material to schools in the Castlemaine area.

Senior Citizen of the Year – Lorraine le Plastrier

Lorraine has been a longstanding, strong advocate for people in Mount Alexander Shire who live with disabilities. Lorraine was pivotal in establishing the Mount Alexander Shire Disability Advocacy Group (MASDAG). Under Lorraine’s leadership MASDAG has delivered many contributions to the community. Lorraine was instrumental in supporting the development of the Positive Ageing Advocacy Group, advocating for change on things that matter to older people in the community.

In 2019, Lorraine joined the Healthy Heart of Victoria Control Group, contributing by providing insight through a disability and access lens. Last year, Lorraine continued her work throughout the pandemic by contributing to the Emergency Response Working Group. Through this, she supported the implementation of community projects, including the distribution of face masks. Lorraine’s love of people and compassion builds bridges and this often helps those who feel isolated. Lorraine uses her leadership and advocacy skills as well as her ability to connect and include people to work for social change and justice.

Young Citizen of the Year – Jade Bujeya

Jade has been an active volunteer and youth leader in our community for the past five years. She has coordinated various youth events and activities through her role on the Council’s Youth Advisory Group. In 2018, Jade founded the Youth Makers Market and maintains the lead role in the coordination of the event as well as being a stallholder. In 2015, Jade was a member of Castlemaine Secondary College’s Youth Parliament team. The team successfully debated and passed a bill for an opt-out organ donation system in Victoria.

Jade has completed a Bachelor of Science at Latrobe University and is currently studying an Advanced Graduate Diploma in Science (majoring in applied mathematics) at Melbourne University. In 2019, she was accepted onto the New Colombo Plan Scholarship Program which is an initiative of the Australian Government, aiming to lift knowledge of the Indo Pacific in Australia by supporting Australian undergraduates to study and undertake internships in the region. As part of the program, Jade spent 6 months studying in Korea.

Community Event of the Year – The Castlemaine Rotary Truck Show

The Castlemaine Rotary Truck Show would normally bring 200 trucks and raise tens of thousands of dollars that are distributed throughout the year to local charities, youth scholarships and community applications for assistance. The pandemic last year saw this event move online, which allowed them to reach a broader audience of over 40,000 people.

In October the committee launched a photo competition, ‘At Work with Trucks’, with entries coming in from across Australia. A local artist was then hired to design a calendar featuring some of the photos and provided marketing material for future events. The committee also organised an online panel of speakers that was broadcast live to Facebook. Through the new skills acquired through their online events, the Castlemaine Rotary Truck Show worked with the Castlemaine Pioneers and Old Residents Association to assist them in presenting their History of Transport in Mount Alexander Shire exhibition on Facebook live to an audience of over 500 live viewers. In November, the Castlemaine Rotary Truck Show held a series of online events and presentations to bring the community together in lieu of the Truck Show event. However, with the easing of restrictions, the committee was able to enact a COVID-safe plan and hold a smaller version of the live truck show. It was also streamed to Facebook and garnered an audience of over 11,000 people. The changing conditions of last year allowed the Truck Show to broaden its audience and provided an opportunity to engage with a larger group of people through media interviews, which they hope will benefit future initiatives and the Truck Show event in 2021.

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