• Loddon Herald

Rhonda's volunteer award

KOOYOORA Women’s Network has honoured Rhonda Heather for her voluntary contributions across local communities.

The group’s annual volunteer award was announced at last week’s dinner in

Inglewood ahead of the Inter-

national Women’s Day.

Guest speaker, vice-president of Rural Doctors’ Association of Victoria Skye Kinder, spoke on her life and commitment to ensuring rural communities were able to access medical and health care.

Network president Colleen Condliffe presented the award to Rhonda, saying her contributions to the region had extended over many decades.

“Rhonda’s involvement in the Tarnagulla and district communities over more than six decades has seen her contributing in the towns of the area and quietly helping family, neighbours and friends,” Colleen said.

“As a musician – Rhonda was a member of the renowned Benola Singers in her younger years – she has performed at countless community events across central Victoria as a vocalist and as pianist.

“She continues to provide musical accompaniment at community gatherings and celebrations including Australia Day.

“For many years, Rhonda has been organist for church services in Tarnagulla and Dunolly and is still ‘pumping out the hymns’ for the congregation of the Uniting Church in Dunolly on most Sundays.”

Rhonda is also one of the small band of dedicated volunteers at the Dunolly op-shop, every week sorting, cleaning and preparing clothes and other donated items ready for sale in the shop that provides support for communities and people across the wider district of Dunolly, Tarnagulla, Newbridge and other areas. Rhonda has served the local churches as their representative to State Synod and also been a member of church state and national bodies.

“It is her care and compassion for others that guides an unselfish and quiet help for people across the district, dropping in with freshly baked cakes or biscuits, picking up the phone and making sure family, friends and neighbours remain connected,” Colleen said.

“Across the wider region, Rhonda enjoys the com-

pany and involvement of others through membership of Kooyoora Women’s Network, Dunolly CWA and Kangaroo Flat Probus and has assisted at the Rheola Charity Carnival for many years.

“And when there’s spare time, Rhonda is knitting and crocheting rugs, soft toys and jumpers for charities.”

Rhonda thanked the network the award. “It’s not something you expect just for helping people,” she said.

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