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Awarded for service to Community Advocacy and Inclusion
Born: 11 August 1947
Entered on roll: 2021
Through charity work, Edna Pennicott has touched the lives of thousands of people.
Edna understands what it is like to fall on hard times. At the age of 12, Edna’s mother died, she was placed in an orphanage and separated from her siblings.
In 2019, Edna received the Tasmanian Volunteering Awards Lifetime Achievement Award. The Award recognised Edna as a full-time community volunteer who has dedicated herself to charity and community service for the past 40 years. Her volunteering includes assisting the Kingborough Cricket Club for 25 years, the Kingborough Tigers Football Club for 45 years, Jireh House, Mara House, Annie Kenney, Kingston Beach RSL, Kingston High School (OurSpace), Kingston Primary School, BCC (Bethlehem Community Centre) Africa, and Walk4Brain Cancer Tasmania.
In 2013, Edna established Kingborough Helping Hands to provide an organisational structure for the work she had been doing for decades. Kingborough Helping Hands fills the gaps with some small, practical means of assistance such as providing food and household essentials to people experiencing financial difficulty.
Kingborough Helping Hands includes an army of volunteers led and inspired by Edna. Together the Helping Hands raise approximately $30,000 per year through events such as the Sharing Tree, Edna’s Christmas Luncheon and Edna’s Soup and Sandwich Fundraiser. Each year, Helping Hands purchases items and collects donations for 150 hampers, and 400 Christmas hampers. The Sharing Tree, launched in 2017, gives out about 700 gifts per year and continues to grow.
Helping Hands runs the weekly Kingston service of the St Vincent de Paul Society’s Loui’s Van, which provides food and information to homeless people and others experiencing hardship. Edna’s leadership is vital for Loui’s Van as she recruits volunteers and manages the van’s roster.
Edna Pennicott OAM received a Pride of Australia Medal 2011, the Kingborough Citizen of the Year 2012 and Sunrise Suburban Superstar.
On 7 June 2020 Edna was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for service to the community of Kingborough.