Morris twins, Nicholls and Da’Ibara honoured for their achievements

Kiama Council hosted the 2018 Community Achievement Awards at The Pavilion on Friday evening.

The function, which was MC’d by Kiama’s Young Citizen of the Year, Sarah Young, saw Michael Cronin welcome Josh and Brett Morris onto the Kiama Sporting Honour Roll.

Josh and Brett Morris

Josh and Brett Morris began their rugby league journey playing together for the Kiama Knights.

Sons of famed international Steve, they followed in their father’s footsteps, signing with the St. George Illawarra Dragons.

Brett debuted for the Dragons in 2006, Josh in 2007.

Josh hit the ground running, representing Country in 2007 and making the Prime Minister’s XIII in 2008.

Switching to the Bulldogs in 2009, Josh played in that year’s State of Origin series, then was selected to represent Australia.

Brett had an injury-affected start with the Dragons, not managing a full season till 2008.

Like Josh, Brett had a stellar 2009, the highest try-scorer for the season, before also being selected for Australia.

Brett went on in 2010 to be part of the premiership-winning 2010 Dragons side under Wayne Bennett.

The brothers re-united at the Bulldogs in 2015, pairing to make a formidable presence on the team’s left edge.

Brett has made 233 appearances in the NRL, scoring 144 tries.

Josh has made 259 appearances for 121 tries.

By any measure Josh and Brett Morris have excelled in their chosen sport, performing consistently at the elite level of rugby league for more than a decade.

Despite the pressures of the NRL, they have also consistently demonstrated integrity, sportsmanship and great character.

Sports Achievement Award

Riley Nicholl – for his achievements in Soccer and Futsal

Riley is 15 years old and is in year 10 at Kiama High School.

Riley is a high achieving soccer player (both outdoor and futsal), in the goalkeeping position. Riley has trained three to four nights a week for 1½ hours a night since he was eight years old.

Riley has represented his school in soccer, and gives of his time freely to mentor, referee and run lines in a local capacity.

Riley’s achievements are numerous and impressive, and the most recent for 2018 include:

  • Silver Medalist - Football Federation Australia’s Australian Indoor Soccer Championships - this was achieved at the beginning of 2018 , when he was also selected in the NSW Metro Under 15 Futsal team. Riley was a member of the NSW team that played in the gold medal match against the ACT.
  • Awarded the prestigious President’s Award from the South Coast Taipans, out of the 130 players that play for the club. Chosen by the club president this coveted honour is awarded to the club player of the year based on club spirit, achievement and loyalty.

Riley has managed all these achievements, and others, while still obtaining well above average grades at school.

Sports Achievement Commendation Award

Wil Da’Ibara – for his achievements in Golf

Wil also attends Kiama High School, and has a very impressive list of achievements over the past few years, with the most recent achievements in 2018 including:

Selected for Illawarra Academy of Sport

  • Competed in the Combined High Schools Sport Association South Coast open champion, which was held on 6 July this year, and Wil as an individual had the second best score in the State for boys.
  • Member of the Kiama Golf Club A grade pennants team.
  • Kiama Golf Club Foursomes winner.
  • Member of the Jack Newton Junior Golf State development squad.

Service to the Environment Award

The Hillside Native Food Forest Landcare Group

The Hillside Native Food Forest started with the help of Julie Errey of Kiama Council, and funds from the Illawarra Biodiversity and Local Food Strategy for Climate Change initiative back in 2011.

The site is nestled between the Kiama Community Garden, the sporting fields and Thompson Street. The site is on a very steep slope which made it difficult for council to maintain, and it was also a weed problem for the community garden adjacent.

The site was used as a demonstration site on World Environment Day in 2011 when ABC’s Costa Georgiadis discussed different ways to help control the weeds on the steep site.

The group officially became the Hillside Native Food Forest Landcare Group in May 2014 and has been involved in the Duke of Edinburgh Award, Kiama 1st Scouts and Venturers Group, National Tree Day, TAFE Illawarra, the Department of Environment and Heritage, and Landcare Illawarra, to name just a few.

The group is looking to draft a plan to see them through the next five to ten years, and already has a number of dedicated volunteers, but are hoping to attract even more.