Selfless acts shown by South Aussies including during bushfires and the global pandemic can be highlighted in nominations which have opened for the 2021 SA Volunteer Awards.
The awards seek to recognise and celebrate the vital role that volunteers play in the wellbeing of the state's communities through the vast range of community and charitable activities.
It's also a chance to say thank you to the thousands of community members who stepped up during unprecedented times.
Impressively, close to 2500 new South Australian volunteers registered during the peak of the pandemic for relief volunteering positions.
They make up the 900,000 state volunteers who give their time on a regular basis.
Human Services Minister Michelle Lensink leads the charge in urging nominations into the awards.
"Throughout one of our most challenging years in living memory, SA volunteers have given their time and skills to save lives and property, put food on the table for people in need, and ensure our most vulnerable community members are supported," the minister said.
"As demand for services grew and some volunteers needed to stay home to protect themselves from COVID-19, we required even more people to rise to the challenge - and that's exactly what happened.
The awards will be presented to outstanding South Australians and businesses at the state government's annual Volunteers Day Thank You event on June 14
Nominations fall into the following categories:
- The Joy Noble Medal - South Australia's highest distinction for an individual volunteer
- The Premier's Award for Corporate Social Responsibility - recognition of the strong contribution the business sector makes to our communities through philanthropy, partnerships or releasing employees for volunteer service
- The Andamooka Community Project Award - awarded to a community, or group of volunteers, which has undertaken a community project resulting in significant community benefit
- The Excellence in Volunteer Management Award - recognises the dedication and commitment of volunteer managers who support and facilitate the engagement of volunteers, presented in partnership with Volunteering SA&NT.
In addition, volunteers in the state can also be recognised with a Premier's Certificate of Recognition for outstanding volunteer service.
It provides an opportunity for organisations and community groups to acknowledge their most outstanding volunteers by nominating one or more for a certificate.
Nominations for the Premier's Certificate of Recognition and South Australian Volunteer Awards close on March 26 and April 6 respectively.
Eligibility criteria and applications can be made online at www.dhs.sa.gov.au/services/volunteers/recognition.