The Peel volunteering community came together on Friday afternoon to officially open nominations for the Peel Volunteer of the Year awards in 2017.
A number of volunteering groups from a wide range of causes – social, environmental, emergency, and more – joined the Peel Volunteer Resource Centre to enjoy afternoon tea and hear from 2016 Peel Volunteer of the Year, Phil Rance, who has worked for the State Emergency Services (SES) since 1983.
“I’ve enjoyed my life as a volunteer with SES, and I’m particularly proud when someone I’ve taught goes on to get their own trainer assessor qualifications, and can go on to train in their own right,” Mr Rance said.
“I encourage you all to commit to volunteer in whatever field you choose, because there’s lots of different fields out there.”
He said he was very lucky to receive the 2016 award, which has given him a lot of pride and raised the profile of the SES within the local community.
“I did have a time back in the early 90’s where I pulled right out of everything, because I was working full-time and trying to commit too much time to it, then I thought after a few years of that, I thought, I’m missing something here... and then I went back into full time again,” Mr Rance said.
Peel Volunteer Resource Centre manager Vicki Pollard said she hoped to see a good range of nominations come forward for 2017.
“The main aim is just to acknowledge the volunteers in the Peel Region, and what they do for the region,” Ms Pollard said.
She said they were looking for nominees who have made a significant contribution to the Peel Community through volunteering efforts, in either the Shires of Murray, Serpentine/Jarrahdale, Boddington, Waroona, or the City of Mandurah.
The nominations are open to volunteers from not-for-profit organisations, community groups or sporting clubs.
Nominees must not have been nominated in the 2016 Peel Volunteer of the Year Awards, and though self nominations are not accepted for individual awards, community groups can self nominate.
All nominees and nominators will be invited to the awards breakfast on December 5, where the final announcements will be made.
Peel Volunteer of the Year nominees must be 25 years of age or over.
Peel Youth Volunteer of the Year nominees must be 24 years of age or under.
For more information on nominations and the awards, visit peelvolunteer.org.au/2017-peel-volunteer-awards/