HENLEY BROOK resident Michelle Dunlop has been honoured for years of tireless volunteer work at the WA Volunteer of the Year Awards.
Mrs Dunlop won the WA People’s Choice ‘Spirit of Volunteering’ Award last night at the Gala Dinner at Hyatt Hotel.
She said to win the award was a big honour, but in her mind all of the nominees and volunteers were winners.
“This type of work is more about the work, it’s not about being recognised for it and any volunteer would understand that,” she said.
“You haven’t really lived until you’ve given something to someone, when you know you’ll never get anything back apart from the joy of helping someone else.”
Mrs Dunlop won the award for her work with Grief Centre WA, an organisation offering free counselling to people suffering from trauma and grief, and Street Friends WA, which provides food and clothing each Thursday night to around 150 homeless people in the Perth CBD.
She said the award would help both groups get more publicity and mean they could do more to help those disadvantaged.
“It’s exposure for the work we are doing; we rely on support for Street Friends, because we don’t get funding,” she said.
“People tell me they want to help, but they don’t know what to do, so this helps raise the profile of volunteer groups and how people can help.”
Mrs Dunlop said she hoped the award would mean she could continue to help others with greater support from the community.
“The feeling in the room last night was amazing and rejoicing with people who are doing their bit to make the world better for other people,” she said.
“You get so much joy out of helping others and I think these awards will help enlighten others and what they can do to help.”
Mrs Dunlop was among eight award winners on the night.
Volunteering WA chief executive Tina Williams said the event recognised the contribution made by volunteers to the social, cultural, economic and environmental well-being of WA.
“This year’s award winners are a group exceptional people, who did not seek reward and were rarely recognised for their generous contributions,” she said.
“They are a credit to our state and the backbone of communities in cities and towns around WA.”