Community Citizens of the Year 2024

Published on 30 January 2024

Australia Day Citizenship Ceremony 2024-209.jpg

At the Australia Day Celebrations held on Friday, January 26, the Shire of Broome proudly unveiled the recipients of the prestigious Community Citizen of the Year awards for 2024. This annual recognition honors individuals who have demonstrated exceptional dedication and contribution to the local community.

The ceremony, held at a festive gathering attended by the Lions Club, community members, dignitaries, and local officials, and showcased the vibrant spirit of Broome as it acknowledged the outstanding efforts of its citizens.

This year's Community Citizen of the Year award went to Hong Yu, who has exhibited extraordinary commitment and made significant positive impacts on the community. Hong has been recognised for her dedicated volunteer services to the Broome Chinese Community spanning over three decades, eight of which she was president. Notably, Hong has undertaken the meticulous task of recording names and headstone inscriptions in the Broome Chinese Cemetery. Collaborating with the Broome Historical Society and the Broome Shire Cemetery officers, she has actively contributed to the creation and mapping of accurate records. In addition to her organisational efforts, Hong goes above and beyond in her volunteer role by providing personal support to the elders of the Broome Chinese Community. This includes accompanying them to medical appointments and shopping, as well as offering home-made meals and fresh vegetables.

Additionally, the Shire of Broome also celebrated the achievements of Annabella Thompson as the Young Community Citizen of the Year. This category acknowledges the dedication and enthusiasm of young individuals in making a difference within the community. Annabella is highly engaged in the Broome sporting scene, actively contributing to various endeavours. She serves as a water runner for senior Aussie Rules football clubs, coaches junior boxing, volunteers at Broome Athletics, assists at the Catholic soup kitchen, and conducts one-on-one private coaching sessions for athletics.

Senior Community Citizen of the Year was awarded to Lesley Westlake. Lesley was recognised for her position of Chair and as founding member of the Broome Community of Elders. Lesley initiated the organisation of free monthly well-attended morning teas. Under her leadership, these gatherings have become a valuable community resource. In collaboration with elected officials, Lesley and the Community of Elders orchestrated a successful day-long Elders Forum, drawing the participation of over 100 elders, the WA Minister for Seniors, and numerous service providers. 

Shire President Chris Mitchell expressed gratitude for the remarkable efforts of the recipients and highlighted the importance of community involvement in shaping the vibrant and supportive environment that defines Broome.

It is never too early to nominate an outstanding community member for next years awards.

Nominate here