Women from all walks of life joined together today over breakfast at the Mt Druitt Hub to celebrate the selfless work of five local women.
The breakfast was hosted by Federal Member for Chifley Ed Husic and was the platform to present the inaugural Coral McLean Awards.
Mr Husic paid tribute to the woman who the award is named after, often described as the Mother of Mt Druitt, for her tireless work for the local community.
“Coral gave over 100,000 hours to this community as a Director of the Holy Family Education Centre and through her involvement with the Mt Druitt and Area Community Legal Centre and the Mt Druitt Reconciliation Group,” Mr Husic said.
“Coral passed away in February 2011 after a long battle with cancer but her legacy lives on in the community she so dearly loved.”
The Coral McLean Award was presented to Rita Wright for her work mentoring indigenous children and their families at the Tregear Presbyterian Preschool and her support for Anglicare.
Blacktown resident, Bernadette Agyepong received a highly commended award for her work advocating on behalf of women refugees at SydWest Multicultural Services.
Leading Senior Constable Cerise Britton from Mt Druitt Police and Tarsa Linsdell from Housing NSW were jointly awarded the Chifley Woman of the Year.
Cassie Scerri of Mt Druitt was awarded Young Chifley Woman of the Year for her work with Tedd Noffs Foundation implementing music, dance and art workshops for disadvantaged boys and girls.
“The efforts of these women help to build the community we’re a part of.”
“Coral would be delighted at the work being done by others in the community to improve the lives of others, but would be humbled to have her name associated with the award.
In a fitting finale to the inaugural Coral McLean Awards, Aunty Gloria Matthews, Rita Tobin and Pat Smith from the Mt Druitt Reconciliation Group presented Councillor Charlie Lowles, representing the Mayor, with the flag used in the first Reconciliation Walk.
“Before she passed away, Coral specifically requested that this special flag be handed to the people of Mt Druitt,” Mr Husic said.
The flag will now form part of a permanent memorial in the new Mt Druitt Hub.”