The NSW Volunteer of the Year Awards Regional Ceremonies round off with Senior SES Volunteer.
Ulladulla SES volunteer, Rodney Feltham, has been awarded the 2023 South Coast Volunteer of the Year for his leadership and commitment to the community as an emergency responder and trainer to the next generation of local heroes.
His achievements were applauded alongside fellow Award Winners Gillian Kearney and the Milton Ulladulla Hospital Auxiliary, as well as the many noble nominees.
Today’s Ceremony was held on Yuin Country at Club Sapphire Merimbula.
"I am immensely proud of the dedication and commitment to community that we see each year from volunteers across the state...The NSW Volunteer of the Year Awards shine a light on these selfless efforts. Congratulations to today’s award recipients.”The Hon. Jodie Harrison MP, NSW Minister with responsibility for Volunteering
Adult Volunteer of the Year – Gillian Kearney
A member of Marine Rescue Narooma for six years, Gillian Kearney is now the Unit Administration and Training Systems Officer and Watch Officer, giving her a key role in the safety of her local community. She also represents the Narooma region on the Marine Rescue NSW State Protocol Advisory Panel, the only woman to do so.
Gillian serves as a fundraiser and community engagement superstar, a mentor and advocate for her fellow volunteers, and a champion for her female colleagues, empowering the women around her with the leadership and support they need most.
Needless to say, the impact of her work can be felt far and wide, from advocating for her colleagues to keeping our community safe on the water.
Senior Volunteer of the Year – Rodney Feltham
Serving as the Deputy Unity Commander of Planning, Training and Operations in the Ulladulla Unit of SES, Rodney – known for his caring and inclusive style – offers his leadership to three teams of volunteers, ensuring that help is never far away in times of emergency. He frequently steps up when the Unit Commander is away.
Rodney’s commitment knows no bounds. During the Western NSW Floods of 2022, he volunteered for a week at a time at Dubbo, Bourke, Broken Hill, Parks and Wentworth, sometimes on multiple occasions.
On top of that, he supports others in developing their training skills and assists in community information forums, stalls and meetings as an accomplished and effective speaker on how locals can keep themselves safe.
Volunteer Team of the Year – Milton Ulladulla Hospital Auxiliary
Formed in 1933, the Milton Ulladulla Auxiliary Branch of NSW is completely run by volunteers, offering three core services: Fund Raising, Hospital Visitation and the Milton Ulladulla Hospital Patient Library.
Dedicated, not only to the welfare of local patients, but also to that of their local healthcare workers, the Auxiliary support the Hospital Staff’s Wellbeing SEED program, which offers a quiet room, aroma therapy and a coffee buddy system.
Finalists for the awards are announced at 25 Volunteer of the Year regional award ceremonies throughout NSW and are invited to the Gala State Ceremony for the announcement of the 2023 NSW Volunteer of the Year at the Gala Ceremony on Thursday 7 December in Sydney.
The 2023 NSW Volunteer of the Year Awards are supported by principal partners the NSW Department of Communities and Justice and ClubsNSW, which represents the state’s 1,100 not-for-profit clubs.