Top citizen will never stop helping

Colac Otway Shire Citizen of the Year Norm Sell, left, with the Young Citizen of the Year Bradley McLeod at yesterday’s Australia Day celebration at beeac.

COLAC Otway Shire’s Citizen of the Year says he’ll stop helping others “the day they bury me”.

Colac’s Norm Sell, 85, said it was an “honour” to become Citizen of the Year at Australia Day celebrations at Beeac.

“I’m not a selfish person, I like to get out and help people where I can,” Mr Sell said.

He is a life member of Colac Probus, a foundation member of the Colac Pipe Band, is involved in RoadSafe Otway, Meals on Wheels and has helped disabled children ride horses.

In his spare time Mr Sell plays bowls, goes fishing, and visits sick people at Colac Hospital on behalf of Probus and the Colac Uniting Church.

“It’s been an honour and a pleasure to have done so much in my lifetime to help others and do what I’ve done,” Mr Sell said.

“I hope to be around for a few more years to continue working in our wonderful community.”

Graeme Tevelein nominated Mr Sell for the award for his “outstanding contribution to the community”.

The shire’s Young Citizen of the Year is Bradley McLeod, who has done years of volunteer service.

“It means a lot to me because I don’t really look for it, but it’s nice to be recognised now and again for stuff you do,” the 24-year-old said.

“I’m very humbled by it.”

Mr McLeod started volunteering at the Colac Visitor Information Centre and St Vincent De Paul at 16.

He is also involved in the Colac Do Care shopping program, is a member of the Colac Lions Club and volunteered when the Queen’s Baton Relay passed through Colac before the Melbourne Commonwealth Games in 2006.

Mr McLeod was also involved in fundraising for 16 events in 2011.

“They’ve all been well worth the cause,” he said.

“I’ll be continuing to do it for quite a long time.”

Mr McLeod said Mr Sell’s achievements were “unbelievable”.

“Hearing all the stuff he’s done I think it’s just a marvellous thing for a man like that,” he said.

“Hopefully down the track in years to come I’ll be like that.”

Family among volunteers to receive Colac Otway awards

COLAC Otway Shire Council has honoured a family of sport lovers in its Australia Day awards.

Pirron Yallock’s Tim and Helen Gibson and their five children are Sporting Service Award winners for Colac Otway Shire.

The Gibson family of Pirron Yallock shared the shire’s Sporting Service Award with Colac’s Keith Hay.

Helen and Tim Gibson, along with their five adult children, have given more than 20 years of service to the Colac Tigers Football Club.

Mrs Gibson said she thought it was important to be involved in their children’s sport and not just to “spectate”.

“I think it’s really important as a family, because we’ve loved what we’ve done but we’ve followed our children’s pursuits in sport,” she said.

“Being involved in what they’re doing is really important.”

Mr Gibson said sport had given his children, now adults, “a healthy outlook on life”.

Mrs Gibson has served as Colac Netball Club president for six years, while her son Matt Gibson has served as a senior, reserves and junior coach as well as a development coach.

Mr Gibson’s wife Jemma is the secretary of the netball club.

Courtney Cuolahan, Matt’s sister, has been involved as a senior and junior development netball coach as well as a senior and state-league player.

Other sisters Elise McVilly and Anna Melville played for the Tigers and are Colac Tigers administrators, while brother Luke Gibson is the team manager of the reserves football team.

Fellow winner Keith Hay has been the captain of the Colac Rifle Club for 56 years.

Shooter Keith Hay.

Mr Hay said “it means a terrific lot” to receive a Sporting Service Award.

“It makes me very proud that I have been helping a sporting club out in the area,” he said.

He has represented Victoria four times and won the Victorian Champion of Champions rifle with a record score.

Beeac’s Margaret Catlin is the shire’s Community Service Award winner.

Beeac's Margaret Caitlin

“I’m just so honoured, so grateful,” she said.

“You don’t do anything for honours.”

Mrs Catlin has served as the secretary of the Beeac Community Centre for about 15 years, been involved in Beeac’s annual community Christmas party, has served on the committee of the Beeac Progress Association and is current member, and was instrumental in setting up the Beeac Rural Transaction Centre.

She encouraged people to get involved in volunteering.

“Australia would be in big trouble without volunteers,” Mrs Catlin said.

Australia Day honour for selfless work

by Carla Okai

TIMBOON’S Peter Pope is Corangamite Shire’s Citizen of the Year.

Timboon’s Peter Pope is Corangamite Shire's citizen of the year.

Mr Pope, the managing director of Pope’s Bus Lines, received the honour at the shire’s Australia Day celebrations at Cobden yesterday.

Corangamite mayor Matt Makin said Mr Pope was a passionate community volunteer.

“He has been a selfless volunteer in the Timboon area for over 30 years,” Cr Makin said.

“In that time Peter has been an active member of the Timboon CFA, life member of Apex, club captain at Port Campbell Lifesaving Club and chairman of Powers Creek Reserve,” he said.

Mr Pope was also the founding president of the Timboon Abbeyfield Action Group, which campaigned for an aged care centre at Timboon.

The council awarded its community event award to the team behind Corangamite Relay for Life.

More than 44 teams took to the track for the fundraiser last year at Cobden, raising $150,000 for the Cancer Council.

Cr Makin congratulated the Relay for Life committee, which is planning this year’s event at Terang.

“The relay event is unique in its format as it is the only event that rotates between townships – allowing it to link all the communities of Corangamite,” he said.

Crystal Van Rijthoven

The council also honoured its young achievers, with Timboon’s Crystal Van Rijthoven and Peterborough’s Alexander Kerr receiving the Young Citizen of the Year awards.

Cr Makin said Crystal had let the way as part of the Corangamite Shire Youth Council.

“Crystal was a deserving winner of the Individual Community Service Award at the Corangamite Youth Achievement Awards and her selection as Young Female Citizen of the Year is no surprise,” he said.

Cr Makin said Alexander was also a worthy recipient after he joined the State Education Minister Martin Dixon’s rural education reference group.

One Response to “Top citizen will never stop helping”

  1. Neil Mactaggart

    Congratulations to Keith Hay of the Colac Rifle Club. I have many happy memories of Keith and the Club from my time as a member during the 1950’s.

    Neil Mactaggart
    Perth Western Australia