2012 Casey Australia Day Award Winners

The annual Casey Australia Day Award winners were announced at a special ceremony on Australia Day, Thursday, 26 January 2012.

The successful City of Casey Australia Day Study Tour recipients were also recognised at the special ceremony on Australia Day.

The Casey Australia Day Awards 2012 winners are:

Therese Howell – Casey Citizen of the Year

Therese has worked hard to raise awareness for amputees and children born with a congenital limb difference over a long period. She has been directly involved in supporting Casey families and children with a limb difference. Last year, Therese was one of five people to win the Vodafone World of Difference Competition in recognition of not only the outstanding work she has done, but her vision for what more can be done to help children with a limb difference. Therese is currently the National Children and Youth Program Manager at Limbs for Life and is working to help parents learn how to handle grief, address their concerns and issues and find ways to adapt.

Thomas Niazmand – Casey Young Citizen of the Year

Thomas is a high achieving local student who works hard, not only on his own studies, but tutoring and assisting younger students as well. Thomas tutors two young indigenous students of Gleneagles College on a weekly basis, as well as working with local primary school students making the transition into secondary school. He is also working with grade four and five students at his old Primary School to help them develop team building and communication skills. Thomas also has the ability to build a good rapport and positive relationships with all the students he works with. Thomas participated in the Casey Young Leaders program and has leapt at every opportunity to help his peers and younger students.

Bette Clydesdale – Casey Senior Citizen of the Year

Bette is one of Casey’s quiet achieving hero’s and over the past twenty years has been using her computing expertise to help other local residents learn how to get the most out of their home computer. Bette has worked as part of countless community fundraising campaigns which have contributed to local service such as kindergartens, Guide Halls, and sporting clubs. She is a life member of the Cranbourne Tennis Club, a charter member of Cranbourne Inner Wheel and was an early member of the Awesome Berwick Cranbourne Club for retired computer buffs. Bette also made the movie, “Where I Live” which was featured in the 150 Years of Cranbourne Celebrations last year.

Juan Carlos Loyola OAM – Casey Sportsperson of the Year

For the young soccer players of the Doveton Special Soccer School, Juan Carlos is more than just a soccer coach; he is a passionate father figure who works hard to ensure that everyone can always participate. Juan Carlos founded the Doveton Special Soccer School in the early nineties and also works to coordinate free soccer clinics in special schools. Juan Carlos coached local Casey soccer players to represent Australia at both the Sweden Global Games in 2005 and the World Cup in Germany in 2006. He is passionate about making sure that people of all abilities have equal access and many opportunities for people to get involved in the sport they love.

Brenda Chessum - Casey Non-Resident of the Year

A highly valued and active member of the Warren Opportunity Shop, Brenda has been a stalwart of a number of local community groups for the past thirty years. Brenda served on the Narre Community Learning Centre Board of Management for twenty five years, was the inaugural Treasurer of the Hallam Private Nursing Home Committee and is currently a member of the Cranbourne Old Time Dance Club Committee. Brenda has always gone over and above to help the organisations she works with, regularly organising social functions for staff and volunteers.

Highly Commended – Jack Cummings and Darren Gibson

Narre Warren North Uniting Church and Community Carols Committee - Community Event / Activity of the Year, 2011 Award

The Narre Warren North Christmas Carols are filled with family friendly Christmas spirit and in their 21st year drew a large crowd, for night of good cheer, music, singing and fun. Local solo artists, performed alongside the Cranbourne Concert Band, Cranbourne Chorale and Narre Warren North Primary School Choir delighting local families. The event was also supported by the Narre Warren North Fire Brigade – who gave Santa his lift – and the Narre Warren Rotary Club behind the BBQ.

Casey Cardinia Relay for Life Volunteer Organising Committee - Community Fundraising Event / Activity of the Year, 2011 Award

More than 2,500 people, making up 65 relay teams, participated in the Casey Cardinia Relay for Life, raising a substantial amount for the Cancer Council Victoria. This made the Casey Cardinia Relay for Life not only one of the most significant fundraisers for cancer research held in Casey, but the second biggest Relay for Life event in Victoria. As well as raising vital funds for cancer research, the event, which was held in the first weekend of March, celebrated the courage and hope of cancer survivors and was a time to reflect and remember loved ones who have been affected by cancer.