AFTER a decade of steering the Dorrigo branch of the United Hospital Auxiliaries of NSW three stalwart volunteers have handed over to a new leadership team.
With a collective 75 years of volunteering with the UHA executive committee, at the recent annual meeting President Sandra McGuire, Secretary Nita McKnight and Treasurer Audrey Woodland retired from duties to take a well-earned rest.
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The newly-appointed President is Liz Bennett, who takes the role for 2022-23; Libby Usher is Secretary and Treasurer is Patsy Green.
The meeting was at Food Angels in Dorrigo, which was thanked for its support by the outgoing president, Sandra.
The branch’s 86th year is destined to be an exciting one with plans already in motion for a high tea fundraiser in the spring.
There is no date yet for the high tea and a planned Open Garden event, but both are a priority in forward planning.
The past year has been a challenging one for the branch, said outgoing President Sandra McGuire.
COVID-19 precautions had a significant impact on the branch’s fundraising activities, and yet the volunteers still managed to donate $8649.44 of hospital equipment to Dorrigo Multi-Purpose Service (MPS).
“I would like to thank members for their patience and support over the past 10-and-a-half years I have been president,” Sandra said.
“During this time, we have donated more than $180,000 worth of equipment to the MPS, and with the expertise of our past member Mary Kell organizing meetings with Members of Parliament, we were able to receive a grant for an x-ray machine costing $190,000 .”
Sandra thanked the Dorrigo community for generously supporting the branch’s fundraisers.
MPS Nurse Manager Lynn Forsyth also attended the AGM to thank the volunteers for their hard work.
“We are very grateful for the support you provide to our MPS and our patients,” Lynn said.
“Our MPS is a well-equipped facility thanks to the support of the Dorrigo UHA and our community.
“It’s a partnership that I’m pleased will keep going because it is invaluable to us.
“We are also in awe of the years of service provided by Sandra, Nita and Audrey.”
Service badges were presented to Dawn Hinton (20 years) and Nancye Bain (10 years) by North Eastern Regional Representative Dee Hunter, who also presented a certificate acknowledging volunteer Shirley Freeman’s 80th birthday.
Andrey Woodland marked 20 years as Branch Treasurer.
She joined the UHA’s North Dorrigo branch in 1956, where her mother was Branch President.
When the branch closed, she took a break before returning to UHA as a member of the Dorrigo branch for the past 25 years.
Nita McKnight joined the Dorrigo branch in 1957 – a remarkable 65 years ago.
She was Branch President for 23 years, Treasurer for nine years and Secretary for 13 years.
Their remarkable service will never be forgotten by the Dorrigo Multi-Purpose Service team, or the broader Health family on the Mid North Coast.
By Andrea FERRARI