Tidy Towns 2016

TIDY TOWN OF THE YEAR 2016
HORSHAM

Located in central Wimmera, Horsham is an exceptionally community driven town. This is the second year running that Horsham has been named Tidy Town of the Year. Horsham has an unbroken record of involvement since the inception of the Tidy Towns Program. A dedicated committee work year round with community groups and Council to encourage ongoing beautification, recycling and litter reduction. There were many outstanding projects entered into the awards program this year. In particular in the fields of Young Leaders, Resource Recovery and Waste Management and Litter Prevention. The Horsham Urban Landcare Group was established in June 2015 and is encouraging the town to learn about food growing, self-reliance and sustainability. The group is proving to be an effective means of sharing information with younger generations. The Horsham Christian Emergency Food Bank is an outstanding initiative and is a worthy winner of the Resource Recovery and Waste Management category; It has a large number of volunteers and is making a significant impact in the Horsham community. Horsham broke the Guinness World Record for the largest number of dancers dancing to the Nutbush song. It was a fundraising event to help fund the re development of the Horsham Town Hall. The Horsham Fishing Competition was extremely successful with 2,100 participants. The competition has helped reduce the number of carp in the Wimmera River and increased the number of catfish. Dalton Cross, the 2016 Young Leader award recipient is an inspiring young leader in regional Victoria. His community leadership and volunteering led him to being named Horsham’s Rural City Councils Young Australian of the Year in 2016. The Horsham’s Men’s Shed has worked successfully with government to build a new shed in central Horsham. The group continues to participate in a range of projects including repairs and making items for schools. Finally, Horsham based schools and students are also showcasing their commitment to the environment. The Horsham Lutheran Primary School is encouraging children to learn about water wise practises, growing their own produce and reducing their environmental footprint. Four students from Horsham College collected rubbish from the Green Lake to help beautify the area. The project was supported by council, Horsham College and the Council. In addition, the Horsham Natural Resource Management partners have worked on various initiatives to educate students about nature conservation focusing on the preservation and enhancement of the natural environment and support of biodiversity.

Congratulations Horsham!

DAME PHYLLIS FROST RECIPIENT
JOSIE JONES

85attach-36mflkwjrsw-1Josie Jones is passionate about the marine environment and has successfully developed the campaign ‘I’m really a mermaid’. Josie is known as the “One tonne mermaid“. Josie has created the One tonne Mermaid campaign to assist fundraising efforts for the Dolphin Research Institute as well as Southern Right whales and Sea Shepperd. The one tonne challenge is gathering momentum. Five posters each year, display environmental, thought provoking messages alongside drawings of mermaids in the marine environment of their ambassador. This year saw The Dolphin research institute used the poster for their annual Walk for Western Port, for which they had their highest registration in history. The Mornington Peninsula community has embraced the posters as their own and she receives praise and promise of further ventures.

ACTIVE SCHOOLS AWARD
MILDURA WEST PRIMARY SCHOOL
APP: LAKE RANFURLY BIRDS AND PANTS

77attach-518pwbhhgxvtTwenty-seven students from the Mildura West Enviro Team formed an action plan with teachers to address the big issues at the lake. The students decided to build a user friendly mobile phone application (app). The students decided on the ambitious format for the app. They visited the area and researched the birds and plants at Lake Ranfurly. This list was authenticated by Amanda Blakney. Each student chose a bird and a plant to research. A user friendly format for the app was researched and all students decided to write poetry about their bird using factual information. Steve Alden was enlisted to support the students hone their artistic skills to draw their birds.

HIGHLY COMMENDED
WOORAGEE PRIMARY SCHOOL
BUSH FIRE RECOVERY PROGRAM

Wooragee students are monitoring re-growth and regeneration of 240 acres of bush on their principal’s property devastated in the December 2015 bush fires to learn about sustainability and resilience of native flora and fauna.

CLEAN BEACH/ WATERWAY
THE DIMBOOLA WARREGUK DRAGON BOAT CLUB

60attach-119ulhrmuoshIn November 2015 the boat club had its first meeting and it was decided that the Wotjobaluk people, the original owners of the Wimmera River should be acknowledged. The group also agreed to include Aboriginal Art in their logo and team uniform.   The 23 club members keenly assemble on the river bank twice weekly to launch the Dragon Boat for training session. A wonderful friendly social activity, observing the scenery and collecting rubbish as they paddle.

HIGHLY COMMENDED
RUTHERGLEN PARK COMMITTEE OF MANAGEMENT
MAKE OVER FOR LAKE KING

Rutherglen Park Committee of Management has been responsible for the lake for many years and in the past maintained the surrounds. The current members have been more active with the idea of developing the lake and surrounds as an attraction and consulted the Community and developed a management plan for the future.

COMMUNITY ACTION AND LEADERSHIP (POPULATION 3000 AND BELOW)
HONOURING OUR HEROES EUROA AND DISTRICT
EUROA COMMUNITY

dscn0291The community of the Euroa district banded together to fundraise to create a park honouring the communities fallen heroes. Three full sized bronze statues of soldiers from the Euroa district , Leslie Maygar, Fredrick Tubb and Alexander Burton, who were all Victoria Cross recipients, were erected in the park. It took five years from the conception to the completion. The emphasis was on local participation on all aspects of the project. The culmination was a public unveiling by the Governor of Victoria, Alex Chernov and other dignitaries as well as the family members of the VC winners and the community. Short speeches were followed by local school children from all schools who formed a choir. The emphasis was on local participation on all aspects of the project.

HIGHLY COMMENDED
DOOKIE COMMUNITY
DOOKIE EARTHED

Dookie Earthed was 12 hours of non-stop art and creative expression and brought thousands of visitors to the town. Dookie Earthed represented thousands of volunteer hours, creative workshops, community gatherings and art making.

HIGHLY COMMENDED
LONGWOOD, RUFFY, GOORAM, CREIGHTON’S CREEK CFA SEAN HEARMAN
THE BIG THANK YOU DAY

The wonderful day celebrated and recognised the 100+ brigades and emergency services who came to assist in the Longwood East/Creighton’s Creek fires.

COMMUNITY ACTION AND LEADERSHIP (POPULATION 3000 AND ABOVE)
MORNINGTON COMMUNITY INFORMATION AND SUPPORT CENTRE INC.
SUSTAINABLE FOOD SUPPORT FOR LOW- INCOME EARNERS

136attach-223nmvgbxowxAs an emergency relief centre, the centre assists people who are experiencing financial crisis. The Centre provides a free fresh food market one day per week in a local hall which creates a community environment. The other ongoing benefits include cooking classes, social benefits and community meals. The community meals are offered at another location for isolated and low-income community members in a setting that is more like a restaurant than a soup kitchen and it has given a small group of locals a new lease on life. These healthy three course meals are cooked by a disability training organization at a low-cost. The Fresh Food program reaches far into the community and has its benefits in more places than can be quantified in this small space.

COMMUNITY GOVERNMENT PARTNERSHIPS
BEECHWORTH TIDY TOWNS COMMITTEE
SUPERMARKET FIRE BRINGS OUT THE BEST IN PEOPLE

33attach-221hgepofzcnIn January 2016 the Beechworth community lost their only supermarket. The community, council, local businesses and producers worked together to assist each other during the loss of the town’s only supermarket. One of the biggest demonstrations of the community spirit in Beechworth was the collective effort to find a new site for the supermarket. The Beechworth Lions supplied volunteers to take elderly people shopping on the bus service, Council provided help carrying elderly people’s groceries. Neighbours looked out for each other, picking up supplies out of town for each other as required. Other employers in town contacted Council within days of the fire to offer casual work to impacted IGA staff. The community spirit demonstrated in this incident has strengthened Beechworth’s social cohesion and well-being.

HIGHLY COMMENDED
MORNINGTON PENINSULA SHIRE AND MT ELIZA PLACEMAKING GROUP
MT ELIZA COMMUNITY SAFETY SIGNAGE

Mornington Peninsula Shire was approached by several community members who had concerns about pedestrian safety around the schools in the area. Together the group decided to develop their own road safety signage.

HIGHLY COMMENDED
HINDMARSH SHIRE, TOWN COMMITTEE MEMBERS AND VOLUNTEERS
COMMUNITY GOVERNMENT PARTNERSHIPS

Hindmarsh Shire Council took over management and operation of the Dimboola caravan park in 2013. Members of the Dimboola Town Committee and other residents volunteered in excess of 300 hours to assist in re-establishing the park to a level that would again start attracting visitors.

CULTURAL HERITAGE
YORTA YORTA NATION ABORIGINAL CORPORATION, GOULBURN BROKEN CMA, DOOKIE HISTORICAL SOCIETY & TALLIS WINE.
THE ROCK CORREA INTERPRETIVE WALKING TRACK

86attach-412byiuxjngo-1The Rock Correa Interpretive Walk is a partnership between the Tallis Family, Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation and the Goulburn Broken CMA, made possible through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program. The breathtaking one hour walk takes in the magnificent panoramic views from the Dookie Hills, using environmentally sensitive interpretive signage at eleven points along the way and at the pinnacle, a panoramic sign shows major land points across the countryside.

HIGHLY COMMENDED
COMMUNITY AND VISITOR INFORMATION CENTRE VOLUNTEERS, WESTERN PORT (HASTINGS) VISITOR INFORMATION CENTRE

The Centre became fully operational in February 2015. The Centre is part of a RAMSAR site of international environmental significance and plays a key role in promoting eco-tourism and the importance of the environment to visitors both from Victoria and overseas.

ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY
BEECHWORTH FOOD CO-OP
CO-OP FRESH AND CO-OP LIVING – NEW BEGINNINGS

36attach-25tfxgfwjqu-1This is not a typical Co Op. The retail shop currently has a product range of over 350 competitively priced bulk dry foods and a growing range of locally (and ideally organic) grown meats, fresh fruit, vegetables and eggs, plus a growing range of household cleaning and personal care products and also includes a children’s play area, seed swap and abundant boxes. Co-Op Living is a wholefood education program, delivered through events, forums, workshops and school programs to educate our community about living a simpler, more connected and more mindful life. In 2016 the Beechworth Food Co-Op is aiming to launch ‘Co-Op Fresh’, which will enable members to connect local growers and buyers in a more structured fashion.

HIGHLY COMMENDED
HORSHAM URBAN LANDCARE GROUP VOLUNTEERS
INCREASING HERITAGE SKILLS THROUGH HOLISTIC WORKSHOPS

The Horsham Urban Landcare Group Volunteers workshops began in June 2015 and its workshops have achieved amazing outcomes in just 10 months, resulting in a community resurgence in the desire to learn about food growing, self-reliance and sustainability.

LITTER PREVENTION
CRIB POINT COMMUNITY
CLEAN UP CRIB POINT DAY

Following a significant bush fire a substantial amount of rubbish was exposed, it was decided to remove the previously hidden rubbish. This was an enormous day for the community of Crib Point with over 100 locals coming together with defence personnel and Federal MP The Honorable Greg Hunt. With the use of four vehicles towing trailers collecting rubbish bags as they were filled, a total of 70 cubic meters of rubbish was removed from along the foreshore and surrounds. Due to the fantastic outcome and community involvement, it has been decided to make this an annual event prior to bush fire season in an effort to reduce potential fuel, as well as increasing illegal dumping awareness and community pride.

HIGHLY COMMENDED
HORSHAM FISHING COMPLETION INCORPORATED COMMITTEE
HORSHAM FISHING COMPETITION

The Horsham Fishing Competition had 2,100 registered participants who brought along family and friends to enjoy the weekend.

PROTECTION OF THE ENVIRONMENT
MORNINGTON PENINSULA SHIRE; MANTON AND STONY CREEK LANDCARE GROUP
RED HILL STATION RESERVE PROJECT

121attach-319nusgfvpnr-1A partnership was developed between the Manton and Stony Creek Landcare Group and the Shire to transform the Reserve into a useable community space. The Landcare Group and the Shire have worked together to create a nature based play space. Following the felling of trees and clearing of weed species in the Reserve (with the aid of the Green Army), the Landcare Group planted approximately 400 indigenous plants. Over the coming months, approximately 1500 additional plants will be planted. In addition to further planting, future works include the installation of interpretive signage and the construction of a Mountain Bike Skills Park. Signage will include information on the Aboriginal and European history of the reserve, locally occurring flora and fauna and the shared use trails accessible from the Reserve.

HIGHLY COMMENDED
BASS COAST SHIRE COUNCIL
SCENIC ESTATE CONSERVATION RESERVE

The community had concerns that this significant piece of vegetation was been degraded by 4WD’s, dumped rubbish and asbestos over the last 20 years. After works were undertaken to clean up the rubbish and block access for 4WD’s, the vegetation and wildlife have flourished.

RESOURCE RECOVERY AND WASTE MANAGEMENT
HORSHAM TRADERS FOR FOOD DONATIONS, HORSHAM TRANSPORT CARRIERS FOR FREE OF CHARGE DISTRIBUTION, VOLUNTEERS OF HCEFC
HORSHAM CHRISTIAN EMERGENCY FOOD CENTRE (HCEFC)

115attach-16jxxkxhpsh-2The HCEFC collects and distributes surplus food items from retail and wholesale food suppliers to community members in times of need. The centre recovers unwanted food items and reduces waste that would otherwise go to landfill. The Centre is staffed by 65 volunteers with a core leadership group of 15 volunteers in Horsham. This group undertakes client assessment, food collection, storage, packing, preparation and distribution of food parcels. The total value of food distributed in 2015 was $216,460.

YOUNG LEADERS
DALTON CROSS

Dalton has demonstrated a long-term commitment to volunteering in the community. This is xemplified in his work with the Horsham Agricultural Society, where he was a key player in the revitalisation of the Show in 2015. Dalton is President of the Agriculture Society and is the youngest President the society has ever had in its 140-year history. The breadth and level of Dalton’s volunteering and community leadership activities led to him being awarded the Horsham Rural City Council’s Young Australian of the Year 2016.

Tyson Huggins (highly commended)Tyson is a keen member of the Longwood CFA. Tyson is a student of Euroa Secondary College and was the initiator in organising the motor vehicle accident simulation event at the School.

KEEP VICTORIA BEAUTIFUL GIFT FUND PRIZES 2016
SEATS FOR REST, DOOKIE LIONS CLUB

The Dookie Lions Club and the Mens Shed members will deliver seats and a table along the Rail Trail. Visitors to the area will benefit from being able to sit for a while taking in the breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside. The Gift Fund Prize money will be used for purchasing materials, constructing the seats and table and then transporting it from the Men’s Shed to the Rail Trail.