Inspirational Barossa women and an organisation have been honoured in The Barossa Council’s Australia Day Awards.
Citizen of the Year, Angaston’s Elizabeth Sibley has been recognised for her lifelong commitment to promoting community causes in Angaston and the wider Barossa.
Young Citizen of the Year, Mount Pleasant’s Cassandra Barker (Priest) has been highlighted for her talents to advance rural causes and her community.
Community Event of the Year is Barossa Disability Expo, which was a great example of collaboration and partnership in providing disability sector information to the community.
Mrs Sibley is described as promoting and upholding “all things good” in her home town and the Barossa, and her many roles and talents continue to serve as an inspiration to others.
She brings energy and enthusiasm to every task she performs and is known for the love, care and compassion she extends to family, friends and extensive community networks.
An accomplished soloist and musician, Mrs Sibley has used her natural vocal and musical talents to benefit a wide variety of orchestral and choral groups over the years including Angaston Uniting Church, Angaston Town Carols, Valley Voices, Angaston Festival Cabaret Committee and local schools.
Her talents extend to musical director and conductor for community events and functions.
She has been endeared to many through her tireless contribution to various service clubs.
Mrs Sibley was instrumental in establishing Barossa Rural Youth, Soroptimist International and a combined Probus Club, holding multiple office bearer positions including terms as president for Soroptimists and Probus.
Family tradition has also seen her support many community causes including the Angaston Uniting Church, Angaston Show Society, Rotary Club, Angaston Bowling Club and Angaston and Penrice Historical Society.
Her passion for helping others in need is reflected in her volunteer work delivering Meals on Wheels and Meet ‘n’ Eat for the elderly and people experiencing disadvantage.
She also promotes causes to support victims of domestic violence, cancer patients and foster children.
Mrs Sibley’s strong calling to support children led to 30 years as a Sunday school teacher and church leader, and a longstanding involvement with the Angaston School Welfare Club and local branch of the Mothers and Babies Health Association.
Cassandra Barker (Priest)
With skills as diverse as animal handling, martial arts and athletics, Young Citizen of the Year Cassandra Barker (Priest) has used her talents to advance rural causes and the wider Mount Pleasant community.
Beginning as a CFS cadet, Ms Barker rose through the ranks of the CFS to senior firefighter.
Aged 18, she is now a cadet supervisor and coordinator, showing maturity and leadership beyond her years.
A skilled animal handler, she has used her talents to show, judge and volunteer at local and state events, including at the Mount Pleasant Show, Urrbrae Agricultural High School, Royal Adelaide Show and Birdwood High School.
In 2015 she was named Young Rural Ambassador for the Barossa.
Her passion and talent for karate elevated her from white belt to black belt and she is now a junior instructor.
Ms Barker remains actively involved in many aspects of community life, using her talents to help others extend their knowledge and skills.
Barossa Disability Expo
Providing far more than just education and information, Community Event of the Year, the Barossa Disability Expo, was a tangible example of community collaboration and partnership.
The event attracted about 350 people seeking advice and information to navigate the new National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
This was particularly important for people with a disability facing a period of rapid change and far more consumer choice.
The expo drew together 45 exhibitors representing the disability services sector to help individuals and families find the right services for them.
Another positive outcome was linking service providers who can achieve far more by working in partnership.
The expo successfully achieved the aim of ensuring the community is more resilient and knowledgeable about the services available to them.
As testament to this, 100 per cent of attendees who were surveyed said they found the expo helpful and would recommend it to others.
Barossa Council Australia Day Breakfast
Recipients will be acknowledged at Council’s Australia Day breakfast at Tanunda Show Hall on Friday, January 26 from 8.30am, which coincides with a citizenship ceremony.
Meritorious service certificates will also be presented to nominees in each category.
Australia Day Ambassador Lynn Hill who spoke with the Herald this week will headline the celebration and speak about her role as founding member of the first Dragon Boat Racing Club for survivors of breast cancer in South Australia.
The event will also include family friendly entertainment, including music, face painting and a glitter tattooist.
People can grab their free breakfast ticket from any council/library branch in the lead-up to the Australia Day celebrations.