Healthcare Heroes Acknowledged At Awards

Written by: The Griffith Phoenix

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The Primary Healthcare Awards night honoured outstanding contributions in the field of primary healthcare in Wagga on Friday, November 10.

In a celebration of excellence and dedication, the 2023 Primary Healthcare Awards took place in Wagga Wagga on Friday 10 November, honouring outstanding contributions in the field of primary healthcare.

Murrumbidgee Primary Health Networtk (MPHN) hosted the awards ceremony showcasing the extraordinary achievements of local healthcare heroes from across the region.

Big winners on the night were the Tumut region’s ‘Fireshed Fridays and High Teas’, Making Friends With Food by The Root Cause, the Deniliquin community’s ‘Intergenerational Activity’, and Dr Rachel Christmas from Temora.

MPHN’s Firsthealth Board Chair Dr Jodi Culbert said recognising local achievements in primary healthcare was critical.

“This year we received a record number of applications, and the calibre of the applications really kept the judges critically reviewing the submissions to discern the finalists and winners,” Dr Culbert said.

“The achievements and positive health outcomes from each of our finalists were inspiring.

“It was an honour to thank our finalists, on behalf of the Board and MPHN Senior Leadership team, for all they do to support health and wellbeing in their communities.”

Fireshed Fridays and High Teas won the Community Grant of the Year Award.

In response to the 2019/2020 bushfires, the Community Foundation for Tumut Region organised 'Fireshed Fridays' and 'Ladies High Teas.' The events fostered community connections and resilience across the Snowy Valleys area, providing mental health support and educational sessions.

Louise Halsey, who accepted the award, said Fireshed Fridays had been a “phenomenon”.

“We’ve been to 25 firesheds right across the area; we arrive with a sit-down dinner, tablecloths, and we use juvenile growth eucalyptus for decorations as a symbol of regrowth,” Ms Halsey said.

“If we have made a difference to one of those firemen, our job’s done.

“When Fireshed Fridays started we also started High Teas.

One woman came along and said she hadn’t pulled her dance shoes out since her daughter was married a decade ago.

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