Westfield Local Heroes 2019
Westfield Local Heroes is a recognition and awards program that connects and enriches communities in Australia and New Zealand. The program discovers and celebrates individuals who make a positive impact to their local community and/or environment.
For further information on the Westfield Local Heroes program, click here.
Newtown Neighbourhood Centre
__Enthusiastic . Driven . Passionate __
When Jane Horvath took a year’s sabbatical from her career to volunteer fulltime, she offered her services to Newtown Neighbourhood Centre. She grabbed the opportunity to set up Newtopian Outreach, which trained 20 locals to engage with and support rough sleepers. Thanks to Jane’s pioneering work, community harmony has improved, and fear and stigma have been reduced. Now, other similar projects are planned. Jane says being an outreacher has been one of the most rewarding experiences of her life. “I have connected with my community of 20 years in a deeper and more authentic way.”
Life Changing Experiences Foundation
__Selfless . Passionate . Inspirational __
As a high school teacher, it broke Jessica Brown’s heart to see students struggling with childhood trauma and falling through the cracks. Jessica was determined to stop the cycle and made many personal sacrifices as she went about setting up the Life Changing Experiences Foundation and the SISTER2sister mentoring program in 2003. SISTER2sister offers intensive one-on-one support for teenage girls in need of a positive female role model and helps empower them to reach their potential. Jessica has helped more than 550 girls over the past 16 years and is always available after they have graduated.
Lillian Howell Project
__Inspirational . Passionate . Caring __
Vivian Stavis had been the manager of the Lillian Howell Project (Lillian’s) for only a year when state reforms cut off funding. Fearful for the vulnerable young women in her care, Vivian led a campaign that convinced the government to backtrack. Four years later, Lillian’s is going strong, providing supported housing for up to 11 teenagers at a time. They learn how to lead fulfilling lives and are helped to heal from sexual abuse, neglect, homelessness or family violence. “Lillian’s allows the girls to follow their dreams and to rewrite their future,” says Vivian.
Recognising all our 2019 nominees
We congratulate all of our finalists and nominees and recognise the important contribution they make to the local community.
View all of the finalists, nominees and their organisations
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