21.5 C
Byron Shire
January 29, 2023

Koala advocate is Tweed Citizen of the Year

Latest News

Bundjalung host Byron Shire Survival Day 

Main Beach Park in Cavanbah – Byron Bay, was the place where both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people gathered yesterday to celebrate the longest-living culture in the world – people who are now living on unceded land.

Other News

Fundraiser to support women

Local teacher, Farah Rowhani is organising a fundraiser called ‘We Say Her Name’ to give financial and emotional support to women in the Northern Rivers. Farah was inspired by her childhood experiences and the recent events in Iran.

Happy new Yulli’s

Yulli’s Byron Bay and its sister eatery Wok This Way will soon be merging in a move designed to...

Bangalow Bowlo amalgamation update

Managers of The Bangalow Bowlo say the community witnessed a ‘nail-biting cliff-hanger moment’ late last year, when a 66 per cent ‘Yes’ vote among members paved the way for amalgamation between Bangalow Bowlo, and Norths Collective’

Man charged over sexual assault – Bondi Beach

NSW Police say that after a report was made in the Tweed/Byron district, a man has been charged following an investigation into an alleged sexual assault in Sydney’s east last year.

Local MP mute over PM diary secrecy

Local federal Labor MP, Justine Elliot, has declined to comment on why her government are refusing to provide the diary of Prime Minister, Anthony Albanese, as a public document. 

Celebrating regeneration on March 4

Planting trees to restore ecosystems is one of the most positive stories of our time, and perhaps the best antidote to climate despair. 

The 2020 Tweed Shire Citizen of the Year is Jenny Hayes from Team Koala (right), who is pictured after receiving her award from Mayor of Tweed Councillor Chris Cherry. Photo: Tweed Shire Council.

Murwillumbah local Jenny Hayes was named the 2020 Tweed Shire Citizen of the Year at Tuesday’s Australia Day Awards and Citizenship ceremony.

The award recognises Ms Hayes’s community work over many years, particularly her dedication to the protection of the Tweed’s endangered koala population, culminating in the founding of Team Koala in 2009.

‘What I am really touched and appreciative about is how much the community has come together to protect our Tweed koalas. Just arrived, or been here for many generations, young and old, everyone joined together and that is so special,’ Ms Hayes said.

‘We have amazing volunteers who go above and beyond what anyone can expect and to be honest, this and my love of animals is what keeps me motivated and inspired for the cause and keeps me going.’

Ms Hayes has been a long-time campaigner for koala-friendly development restrictions, particularly on the Tweed Coast where the koala population is most under threat.

Local champions honoured

Ms Hayes was one of seven local champions honoured at the official Australia Day Awards ceremony.

The 2020 Individual Volunteer of the Year Award was split between two worthy winners, Michael Reid and Les Hardy. Michael was chosen for his dedicated work at Agape Outreach Incorporated, where he is known to cook up to 60 litres of food at a time – at his own expense – supporting the homeless and needy of the Tweed. Long-time Pottsville resident Les Hardy was a joint recipient of the award for the number of charities and community organisations he supports, and is often found selling raffle tickets to benefit these organisations.

The 2020 Group Volunteer of the Year Award went to the Murwillumbah Hospital Coffee Shop Volunteers who for the past 11 years have provided their helpful service five days a week, 52 weeks a year, to benefit the sick and frail and those that care for them. During that time, the group has raised more than $580,000 towards equipment for the hospital.

The 2020 Community Event of the Year Award was given to the Tweed Valley Equestrian Group, whose annual Power of Pink Fundraiser has raised much-needed awareness and more than $125,000 towards breast cancer research.

The 2020 Sporting Achievement Award went to tennis coach Gemma Eaton for her outstanding work particularly with disadvantaged young players and children with a disability.

The 2020 Young Achiever in Community Service Award was taken out by 12-year-old Tj Kleeman, who can be found most weeks at her local cemetery, tending to the graves of people unknown to her. Two additional young nominees received honourable mentions in this category – Shantel Gregoraci and Alyce Togo.

Mayor of Tweed Shire Chris Cherry said the Australia Day Awards provided an important opportunity to acknowledge and thank those whose actions have enhanced the fabric of the community.

‘The Tweed owes a lot to the contribution of these local champions, whose selfless dedication and commitment makes our community such an exceptional place to live,’ Cr Cherry said.

33 residents from 12 countries as far afield as Colombia, Thailand and The Netherlands also became Australian citizens at the ceremony.

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Ballina’s Citizens of the Year announced

Ballina Shire Council announced its Australia Day Awards yesterday at the Lennox Head Cultural Centre. The awards were presented by Sandra Jackson and netballer Liz Ellis, with music by Katie Rutledge and Levi Maxwell. The event was also livestreamed.

Lismore City Council’s awards ceremony

Sophia Watt was named Lismore City Council’s 2023 Citizen of the Year at an awards ceremony held at the Goonellabah Sports & Aquatic Centre yesterday.

Police find body of missing Elanora woman

Detectives attached to taskforce Victor Arum investigating the disappearance of 61-year-old Elanora woman Wendy Sleeman have recovered a body and vehicle at Wilston on Brisbane’s inner north yesterday.

Tweed Council celebrates citizens new and old

Yesterday Tweed Shire Council celebrated members of the community, old and new, with an award ceremony. The Citizen of the Year award went to refugee advocate Joan Henderson of Urliup.