Senior Volunteer of Year

LAKEMBA based Islamic Women’s Welfare Association volunteer Abla Tohamy Kadous has been named the NSW 2019 Senior Volunteer of the Year after spending the last 35 years helping hundreds of migrant women settle into their new homeland.

The volunteering award announcement was made last Thursday in front of more than 300 community, business and political leaders and marks the end of a state-wide, seven-month search spanning more than 120,000 individual nominations across 20 centres in the 2019 NSW Volunteer of the Year Awards.
Abla said she was very excited but did not expect to win the award.
“There were 20 other finalist and they were all so marvellous,” she said.
“I develop programs at the Islamic Women’s Welfare Association.
“We help women from so many different nationalities, with so many ideas and cultures, and so we need programs relevant to them and their past, but also their new home here in Australia.
“We also take our female members on trips.
“Last week we went with 57 women on a bus trip to Orange where we went cherry picking.
“It was wonderful for them.
“They were singing and dancing on the bus.
“The doctor next door to us said this was the best medicine for them because they were sometimes isolated but on the bus together, they were happy and engaged.”
Abla’s colleague Racheal Pickering said: “It doesn’t matter who you are or where you come from, Abla is always there to help you, offer advice any time of the day.” she said.
“Abla is an inspiration.
“She inspires other people, especially our younger generations, to get involved in their community by volunteering and making a contribution that benefits us all.”