Hidden Treasures Honour Roll

The 2020 Hidden Treasures Honour Roll was launched on Thursday 15 October by The Honourable Adam Marshall MP, Minister for Agriculture and Western New South Wales. This year 104 rural women were recognised for the contribution they have made through volunteering.

In the Ministers’ forward they acknowledged that the last year has placed enormous pressure on rural and regional women, families and communities and that despite the tough times we find ourselves in, it is the volunteers who have stepped in to support their communities.

‘This year has tested our Australian spirit as we have dealt with devastating droughts, fires and floods, and a global pandemic that will change the way we live. While we go through this time of change, our country will continue to be held together by our resilient volunteers who dedicate their time to the community.

‘This year we have called on our volunteers to go above and beyond in recovery roles across the state. Our small gesture of appreciation through their inclusion in this honour roll is a tribute to these rural and regional women, as we continue to focus on building resilience and a rewarding future for the next generation.

‘Despite the tough times we find ourselves in, it is important for us to take the time to thank and recognise the volunteers who have stepped in to support their communities. We encourage you to join these celebrations by reading these stories, and perhaps taking inspiration to start, or continue, your own volunteering journey.’

Read the 2020 Hidden Treasures nominee stories.

About Hidden Treasures

An annual initiative of Department of Primary Industries’ Rural Women’s Network, Hidden Treasures recognises the outstanding efforts of women volunteers in NSW and promotes the valuable role of volunteering to the community.

This important tribute captures inspirational stories, documenting and celebrating the unpaid work of women who are ensuring the viability of so many important and crucial community groups and charities such as emergency services, the arts, environment, social justice, education and sport organisation, and so many others within rural and regional communities.

The growing list of more than 900 rural women volunteers is a testament to the generosity and hard work of so many women who are publicly appreciated by their community as part of this project.

We hope the annual Hidden Treasures Honour Roll will improve recognition of the important and diverse roles women volunteers play as key participants within NSW rural communities and that their stories will encourage others to take on volunteering roles.

Nominate a rural women who makes your community a better place to live

Nominations for the 2020 Honour Roll are now closed.

Nominating a rural woman for the Hidden Treasures Honour Roll is a great way to celebrate rural women from across NSW who give so much of their time to improving our communities and neighbourhoods. You can nominate a friend, family member, colleague, community worker - any rural woman who you believe makes your community a better place to live.

To nominate simply complete the Nomination Form and tell us a short 'story' about why your nominee is worthy. All rural women nominated will be included in the Honour Roll. NB: Nominations will only be accepted for NSW rural women. 'Rural' is defined as anyone living outside the larger metropolitan centres of Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong.

Please check our Hidden Treasures Listing to ensure the person you wish to nominate has not been nominated previously.

For more information or help with your nomination call the Rural Women's Network on 02 6391 3186 or email rural.women@dpi.nsw.gov.au

Volunteering in NSW

The purpose of life is to be useful, to be honourable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.  - RALPH WALDO EMERSON

There are almost 1.7 million volunteers, who give more than 241 million hours of voluntary work to the NSW community. The value of this contribution is estimated in excess of $2.4 billion to the State's economy. (NSW State Plan)

Australian volunteers are essential to society, and many charities would struggle to survive without the support of their volunteers. Volunteers contribute more than 700 million hours of community service to so many areas of society, including community health care, heritage and arts, environment conservation, emergency services, education, social justice and sports. Acknowledging volunteer efforts can build self-worth amongst individuals and accelerate community spirit.

National Volunteer Week

More than six million Australian volunteers give happiness to others each year. Research shows that those volunteers are happier as a result. This National Volunteer Week, help us make Australia the happiest place on earth! Whether it's one hour of your time or an ongoing commitment, it's easy to share your skills and interests to give a little and change a lot. The theme this year is 'Changing communities, changing lives.'

"Volunteering is the ultimate exercise in democracy. You vote in elections once a year, but when you volunteer, you vote every day about the kind of community you want to live in." MARJORIE MOORE

Honour Rolls