Orange Social Dance Group’s Audrey Ferris Named Citizen of the Year | West Central Daily

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A LIFETIME of bringing joy to others earned former nurse Audrey Ferris the honor of Orange’s Australia Day Citizen of the Year. A founding member of the Orange Social Dance Group, which began 37 years ago, Ms Ferris was announced Citizen of the Year on Wednesday from a list of five nominees at Australia Day celebrations at Cook Park. “I’m so thrilled, I don’t really know what to say,” she said. “I love doing it and I was happy to do it, so I don’t understand why anyone would nominate me,” Ms Ferris said humbly. The Orange social dance group offers lessons for beginners to more experienced ballroom clogs to new fashionable styles and is just one string to Ms. Ferris’s bow. She has also been involved with the Delta Dogs program which takes dogs to various institutions including care homes for the aged, volunteers at Wontama Aged Care and the Orange City Council Library delivering books to residents. Ms Ferris has also produced audio books for Vision Australia and is a member of the Orange Stamp and Coin Club and the Orange Scrabble Club. At the moment Ms Ferris is the secretary of the social dancing group Orange but has held the role of chairman “about six times”. “It’s a wonderful way to exercise, because you can exercise doing something that you really enjoy, and then of course there’s also the social aspect, you meet people, lots of nice people. The group caters to all ages but mainly appeals to the older generations and Ms Ferris agrees it was important to get these people moving. “Exercise is very important,” she said. said, adding that she initially had no dance training when she formed the group with Peter Fuller in 1985. Citizen of the Year was Glenn Atkinson, with his ‘Push from the Bush’ garnering over 200,000 $ for the purchase of equipment for the neonatal units at the Royal Hospital for Women in Sydney and Orange. Mr Atkinson originally planned to raise $65,000 by walking the 300km from Orange to Sydney with the idea of ​​giving back to hospitals that helped his prematurely born twin girls survive in December 2020. Also nominated for Citizen of the year Ann-Maree Coyte, Janelle Gibs on and Dr. Sumitha Gounden. Ann-Maree Coyte has served the community for the past 30 years in community radio and has supported the RSPCA and Blossoms Rescue. Janelle Gibson, who was also nominated in 2021, volunteers at the Ronald McDonald House in Orange, the Hospital Auxiliary cafe and is treasurer for the town of Orange Eisteddfod. Dr. Sumitha Gounden is Head of Service at Orange Hospital’s Medical Rehabilitation Unit and was nominated for initiating an outreach program aimed at providing rehabilitation services to small health departments. Although he was unable to attend Wednesday’s ceremony, Orange Mayor Jason Hamling congratulated Ms Ferris and the other nominees. “They join a long list of unsung heroes who have gone the extra mile and volunteered their time for the good of others,” said Cr Hamling. “I am delighted that their contribution to Orange is being celebrated on Australia Day. Their commitment and dedication have made a significant and positive difference in the lives of other people and they deserve to be recognized.” Our reporters work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. Here’s how you can continue to access our trusted content: TELL ME Send a letter to the editor using the form below