Goulburn woman Prue Rickard has just been named as the regional winner of the NSW Senior Volunteer of the Year.
She was awarded the honour at a ceremony for the 2017 NSW Volunteer of the Year Awards in Cooma on September 14.
At age 70, Ms Rickard has only just recently retired from working as a nurse at Waminda Aged Care and she takes on many volunteering roles in the community, including Meals on Wheels, The Red Cross shop, Transport for the Bourke Street Health Service and Homestart. She is a member of Goulburn City Lions Club.
She has has been volunteering with the NSW Cancer Council, being part of the successful Goulburn Relay For Life Committee since 1999. She is currently the catering coordinator for the event. She has also been a team leader for Daffodil Day and Pink Ribbon Day and has been selling merchandise in the Goulburn area for many years.
But the self-effacing Ms Rickard said she volunteers not for the honours but simply because she likes to help others.
“It is a pity more people don’t do community work. Voluntary work is very rewarding. It makes people feel good about themselves,” she said.
“Mum always used to say that voluntary work was really good for you and it has helped me over the years. Mum taught me to not always think about myself and to do things for other people who are worse off than me.
“I looked after her when she was ill and that is how I got into volunteering in the first place through services such as Meals on Wheels, which does a great job connecting with older people in the community.”
Ms Rickard’s nomination cites her dedication to the NSW Canccer Council as ‘second to none.”
“She is at every committee meeting and is always happy to help out wherever she can. She is an integral part of the team,” the nomination stated.
At the awards ceremony, Minister for Volunteering Ray Williams said it was important to celebrate the contribution of local volunteers. “People who volunteer are often happier, healthier and more connected to their communities,” he said.