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Kittie Dwyer receiving her award for Parkes Australian Citizen of the Year 2020

THERE were priceless smiles and expressions, there were some tears and there were heartfelt words about how tough the last 12 months have been, both near and far.

But above all there were messages of hope, pride, determination and togetherness. These are the feelings that came out of Cooke Park and across the Parkes Shire on Sunday during the 2020 Australia Day awards ceremonies and community celebrations.

The annual awards celebrate and acknowledge outstanding community, sporting and cultural contributions and achievements made at a local level by Parkes Shire residents.

Parkes’ 2020 Citizen of the Year Kittie Dwyer was surprised and took to the podium after hugs and congratulations from her fellow nominees to say that everyone who contributes to the community should be praised and thanked.

A product from Trundle originally, Kittie has been a lifelong resident of the Parkes Shire and is well known for her dedication, passion and determination for the community.

She started the Currajong Carers Support Group and remained its chair and facilitator for many years. As former chair of the group and a board member of Currajong Disability Services, Kittie’s positive attitude was instrumental to providing the best care and options for the community.

She’s been described in her nomination as “a very generous, thoughtful community-minded lady who still remains very motivated and willing to share her extensive knowledge and empathy to ensure residents of Parkes and surrounding community townships have access to support and care”.

Story and selected pix courtesy of PCP