Helen Karrasch has embraced community work in Orange since moving from Brisbane. Elizabeth Newstead has worked tirelessly for first aid and sporting groups in Molong while Rhonda Watt leads key organisations in Cumnock.
The three women's efforts have been acknowledged by being named on the 2019 Hidden Treasures Honour Roll which recognises volunteer work in NSW.
Regional recipients of the annual project run by the Department of Primary Industries' Rural Women's Network will be recognised at a ceremony in Forbes on Friday by the member for Orange Phil Donato.
Mrs Karrasch said she was stunned to be a nominee.
"I was completely surprised. I had no idea. I just do what I have to do," she said.
Mrs Karrasch said she and husband Roger moved to Orange in 2014 to be with family who lived here.
"I'm a city girl. I come from Brisbane," she said.
"[Orange] is very different to Brisbane. The weather of course was a big adjustment," she said.
Mrs Karrasch said she was a paralegal in Brisbane and wanted to be involved with community groups, including the Country Women's Association, Ionians and Probus, to embrace life in Orange.
"To join the CWA, it was a learning for me. Most people think it is about scones and jam and cups of tea but they advocate for all sorts of things," she said.
I was more than gobsmacked. I couldn't believe it.Elizabeth Newstead, Hidden Treasures nominee
Mrs Karrasch is the current treasurer of the Orange branch of the CWA after previously being the cookery and publicity officer.
Her work has included project managing a $25,000 renovation of the branch's kitchen and reviewing more than 90 years of the branch's monthly meeting minutes for the CWA of NSW.
Mrs Newstead said she was also surprised to discover she had been nominated.
"I was more than gobsmacked. I couldn't believe it. I feel very honoured by it," Mrs Newstead said.
She said she moved to Molong from Menindee in 1988.
Mrs Newstead said she had been involved in the St John Ambulance group in Broken Hill and joined the newly-started Molong group in 1998.
Her achievements included 40 years of service to St John Ambulance, being awarded the member of The Order of St John medal in 2011, and being a member of the Molong State Emergency Service for 15 years.
Mrs Newstead said she had been a keen golfer and was the Molong club secretary for several years.
Her nomination said Mrs Newstead had strong family ties.
"She raised four children and now has seven grandchildren, 18 great grandchildren and one great-great grandchild," it said.
Cumnock farmer Rhonda Watt was nominated for her work with organisations in the town including being secretary of the Cumnock Progress Association.
"I'm managing a project on our sports precinct area," she said.
"I work hard for my community, sure, but I'm not alone. I'm one of many people who keep things ticking along. I keep my finger on the pulse.
"I was completely surprised. I think there are a lot of hidden treasures in our community."
Her nomination said she had been president of the school P&C committee, co-ordinated the show society luncheon for 20 years, was on the village beautification committee and instigated the Painting of the Power Poles scheme in Cumnock's main street.
"She became secretary of the progress association 10 years ago and has since spearheaded numerous projects including Australia Day celebrations, Daroo Award dinners, Molong Players' suppers, Zoo 2 Zoo breakfasts and upgrading the showground facilities," it said.
It said Mrs Watt worked with Cabonne council on local projects.
"Her ability to access and write grant applications to benefit the community is outstanding," it said.
Mrs Watt is also a member of the local rural fire brigade.
It said she had also helped co-ordinate fodder drops and distribute vouchers to farmers in the drought.
Nominations for the 2020 Honour Roll open on May 18 and close on July 24.
The 2020 Hidden Treasures Honour Roll will be launched at the NSW Rural Women's Gathering in Forbes from October 23-25.
For more information call the Rural Women's Network NSW Department of Primary Industries on 6391 3612, email firstname.lastname@example.org or go to the DPI/RWN website.
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