One woman on a mission delivered drought relief to hundreds
JUST as water is the lifeblood of this country, it's salt of the earth Aussies like Jean Vickery, who make all the difference.
Jean, was this morning named Coffs Harbour's Citizen of the Year for her tireless work delivering drinking water and aid to those, who have needed it most both locally and across the state.
Loading up her car, with drinking water, food and donations collected on the Coffs Coast she has spent the past year setting off on a number of trips to drought-stricken communities proving one woman can make a difference on her own.
"I thought I was a winner just to be nominated," Jean said in accepting her Australia Day honour.
"I want to thank everyone who had faith in me ... I just love helping people, that's why I did it.
"This is so unbelievable, I'll never forget it, I want a replay of what just happened. Oh my gosh, it's amazing."
Visiting far flung communities, Jean clocked up thousands of kilometres in 2019, the layers of dust on her car throughout the year proving just how far she had travelled.
When water tanks ran dry in the Orara Valley, Jean was also instrumental in helping locals out with drinking water.
Coffs Harbour City Council also assisted residents with free tank drinking water deliveries to the drought-hit parts of the region, before rain hit a few weeks ago.
Jean joined an extraordinary group of locals nominated for Australia Day awards today.
Emma Millie Serisier was named Young Citizen of the Year for her extraordinary efforts in science and academia and footballer, ironwomen and runner Olissa Onley was named Sportsperson of the Year.
The Sawtell Fun Day is Coffs Harbour City's Event of the Year.
The nominees for Citizen of the Year were:
Barbara Haigh - Coffs Harbour, Dean Evers - Coffs Harbour, Michael Bourne - Coffs Harbour, Nora Brooks - Bonville
Young Achievers of the Year
Emma Millie Serisier - Lowanna, Teo Ross - Woolgoolga, Kaleb Darbin - Woolgoolga, Sportsperson of the Year
Olissa Onley - Sapphire Beach, Nathan Stary-Wynn - Coffs Harbour, Heather Orme - Nana Glen
Event of the Year
Sawtell Super Fun Day