Community Citizen of the Year Awards – 2023 Nominees

Published on Friday, 27 January 2023 at 10:29:34 AM

Community Citizen of the Year Awards – 2023 Nominees

Community Citizen of the Year Awards reward and recognise individuals and organisations making a notable contribution during the current year, and/or those who have given outstanding service over a number of years.

Outstanding contribution and community service includes areas such as; education, health, fund-raising, charitable and voluntary services, business, sport, arts, the environment, social inclusion or any other area that contributes to the advancement and wellbeing of a community.


This year’s Youth Citizen of the Year Award goes to Raya Noonan. Raya is 14 and resides in Burekup.

Raya is an active member of the Shire of Dardanup Youth Advisory Group and has been a supportive and valued member of the group since it started in 2021. Her contributions have helped design and deliver valuable content to young people in her community which includes her passion for sustainability and social responsibility.

Raya is the first to volunteer her time and efforts to local community events both with the Youth Advisory Group but also with other community-based event organisers such as the Bull and Barrel in Dardanup, where she was one of a team that helped design and create life-size paper puppets. Her passion for sustainability in the community also helped drive a youth leadership program based event "Eco-Con” where young people from the community could come and learn more about their environment from a variety of eco-based facilitators.


The next category for the awards is the Community Citizen of the Year. The nominations are;

Ashlea Bluett

Ashlea makes an outstanding contribution to our community with volunteering to over 12 areas, including local sports, education, health, and community events that just keep growing. Ashlea is only 29 with two young children and has shown that she is committed to growing the community with volunteering most days.

Her many community-based and voluntary roles include:

  • Eaton Foreshore Festival, raffle coordinator, sponsorship coordinator, shire correspondent;
  • Eaton Safety House Coordinator;
  • Red Cross, life blood donor;
  • St John - Volunteer Ambulance Officer;
  • St John - VLG Volunteer Leadership Group;
  • Eaton Family Centre, promotions, project and fundraising coordinator;
  • Eaton Primary - P&C vice president, canteen volunteer;
  • Eaton Auskick Coordinator, Eaton Junior Football Club promotion coordinator;
  • Eaton football canteen volunteer.

Our second nominee for Community Citizen is Tony Rooney.

Tony volunteered with the West Dardanup Volunteer Bushfire Brigade and attended many training days and wild fires in the local area.

Tony cuts the grass on the road verge, traffic island and the road reserve opposite. The wild oats and long grass can become a traffic hazard so Tony gets out his mower or whipper snipper because he is community minded and a genuinely nice person. Tony is a likeable character and would stop and talk to anyone on most subjects.


The winner of the Community Citizen of the Year Award is Ashlea Bluett.


The final category for the Citizen of the Year Awards is the Group Citizen. And this year, the award goes to the Dardanup Heritage Collective.


The Dardanup Heritage Collective is the group behind the idea for the Dardanup Heritage Trail. The volunteers initiated the project and were able to successfully deliver the project with assistance from the Shire of Dardanup and various funding bodies. The first stage involving 18 signs has been installed and an official opening ceremony held late last year.

The collective approached the Shire to apply for funding on its behalf to commence the project and help recognise the heritage of Dardanup. The group was successful with the initial grant and went on to successfully receive other various funding to support the project. The DHC volunteers spent hundreds of hours researching the town’s history, creating content to complete the first stage of the project involving 18 trail signs in and around Dardanup.


I would like to sincerely thank all of the nominees for their efforts.


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