Quiet leaders recognised on Australia Day

Andrew Downes, Captain of Gerringong's Rural Fire Service Brigade is one of Kiama's Australia Day award recipients.
Andrew Downes, Captain of Gerringong's Rural Fire Service Brigade is one of Kiama's Australia Day award recipients.

Kiama Council has released their Australia Day award recipients for 2020, celebrating the quiet achievers in the community.

Andrew Downes, Captain of Gerringong's Rural Fire Service (RFS) Brigade is Kiama's Australia Day Citizen of the Year.

Andrew was nominated for his devotion to duty within a volunteer-based organisation that directly benefits all local communities.

Andrew has been an active RFS member for more than a decade, and brigade captain since 2017.

This period has seen a significant increase in calls on the RFS locally, as well as being deployed throughout NSW.

As captain Andrew has worked tirelessly to ensure his brigade is well-equipped, supported and trained.

Young Citizen of the Year, Olivia Deans, has been recognised for her achievements in karate over more than a decade.

Taking up the sport when eight years old, now 20, she has amassed an impressive list of accomplishments, including representing NSW, and a collection of gold medals at the national and international level.

Olivia is currently organising workshops and activities for NDIS participants whilst studying for her teaching degree.

Olivia Deans, Young Citizen of the Year, has been recognised for her achievements in karate over more than a decade.

Kiama Council

The Community Group of the Year has been shared by the Kiama Red Cross and Jamberoo Touch Association.

The Kiama Branch of the Australian Red Cross has been supporting the community for more than 100 years.

As well as their iconic Red Cross Calling and Red Cross Fun Run fundraisers, they organise street stalls, raffles and barbecues.

This helps them provide emergency services, refugee integration, Learner Driver, Breakfast Club and the Young Parent's programs.

The Jamberoo Touch Association started in 1984 as a social competition and has grown to 900 senior and junior players.

The Association manages a 51-side summer competition, 32-side winter competition and more than 100 juniors.

Regardless, the Association is still focused on touch as fun, friendly family-focussed sport anyone can enjoy.

The awards were presented to recipients at the Australia Day ceremony at Minnamurra Public School on Sunday, January 26.