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Taronga Volunteers were recognised as part of the NSW Volunteer Of the Year Awards

In August Taronga nominated 13 volunteers across TZ and TWPZ for the NSW Volunteer of the Year Awards program.  All were finalists and presented Certificates at regional awards events. 

At the Orana Far West awards Taronga Western Plains Zoo’s volunteer committee member Bob Barden won the 2014 Senior Volunteer of the year and the Overall region Volunteer of the year . Bob has been volunteering at Taronga for 28 years, both as a committee member and volunteer guide, he was recognised for his dedication, good nature and professionalism

Both Dinah and Bob from Taronga Western Plains Zoo represented Taronga as state finalists for NSW Volunteer of the Year at an awards presentation at the Kirribilli club on 5th December 2014.

At Taronga Western Plains Zoo, National Volunteer Week 2014 was celebrated with a casual BBQ at the Education Centre. Volunteers and staff both attended the BBQ in the glorious autumn weather. The Zoo’s General Manager kicked off informal proceedings by talking to the group about some recent major Zoo highlights, and how our volunteers are crucial parts of marking these projects so successful, along with their ongoing support in their regular day to day duties carried out at TWPZ. It was then time to award the National Volunteer Week Awards to the very worthwhile winners. In total 10 awards were handed out, many to surprised and delighted volunteers who were present at the lunch. All in all the lunch was a lovely event, and gave all Zoo staff an opportunity to thank our hard working volunteers.

B: Be Supportive & Enthusiastic

Thomas Coates – For his positive nature, enthusiasm and tireless efforts during April school holidays. His passion not only for the animals but for the Zoo itself and its visitors shines through. He is great at meet and greets and a great role model to the YATZ kids.

Peter Judd – For his efforts of volunteering to drive a noisy bus of singing children for Zoo Adventures across April, and his positive attitude whist doing this. Also for sharing his great Zoo knowledge with the children, particularly about the Zoo’s military history.

A: Accept and Take Responsibility

Bob Browne – For being very accommodating with the Education teams special requests, for his excellent bus driving skills and his great nature with the kids at the Zoo.

Elke Weinbrecht – For being a fun and friendly and generous volunteer since starting in 2010. She always provides a cheery welcome to visitors as well as goes above and beyond any keeper’s expectations. Not only is she is a great volunteer, she is also a great and very skilled baker!

S: Show Dignity & Respect

Leonie Saville – For being an extremely friendly and hardworking volunteer. She is a real asset to the marketing team, very reliable and takes very beautiful photos that help take our animals to a broader audience then just our Zoo visitors.

Greg O’Mally – For being a great volunteer who gets along with everyone. Nothing is too much trouble for Greg and he is always pleasant and easy going. He shows a great deal of dignity and respect to all Zoo visitors, staff and fellow volunteers.

I: Innovate &Take Initiation

Sue Ryan – For being a very hardworking and dedicated volunteer, who brings a wealth of knowledge about the Zoo and its animals to everyone she works with, particularly those who are new and who she mentors.

Ros Ryan – For being a hard working, behind the scenes administrator for the volunteer group, as well as being a hard working and dedicated volunteer on the ground. Ros’ efforts with coordinating meetings and communications for the volunteer group go a long way for all.

C: Clear & Simple

Bob Barden – For being an excellent example of what a Zoo volunteer is about, and an excellent chairman of the volunteer committee. Bob is always willing to make decisions for the better of the group, consult with Zoo staff and also represent the volunteers as required. But furthermore, he is a great volunteer and guide, and clearly and simply a worthy recipient of a national volunteer week award.

Ray Jaques – Posthumous Award – In recognition of Ray’s dedication to TWPZ as volunteer for 16 years. Ray was always incredibly positive, happy contributor and a very well liked, respected and talented volunteer and will be greatly missed by Zoo staff and volunteers. His enormous effort will be remembered and appreciated for a long time to come.