Stand up and be counted by volunteering: medallist

Talitha WolfeAlbany Advertiser

Volunteering is essential to a community, says Albany’s Order of Australia Medal recipient Marion Sewell.

The 78-year-old has been awarded the honour for her volunteering contribution to the Albany and Tambellup communities.

Although Sydney-born, Mrs Sewell quickly learned the importance of community after moving to Tambellup with her husband in 1966.

“I lived five miles out of Sydney and used to go to town in the car for lunch and then I moved to Tambellup which was half-an-hour out of Katanning,” she said.

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“When I came to Tambellup, well it’s a matter if you want it done you have to do it. If you don’t stand up and be counted you can’t complain about anything.”

Leaving the big smoke behind, Mrs Sewell worked as a kindergarten teacher before becoming a Brownie leader in 1988–2004.

It was that contribution whichearned her the Tambellup Meritorious award in 1989.

“If your children are involved in things and you can’t step up to the mark, you can’t expect that to be a success,” she said.

“If you see the need in the community and know that you are fulfilling that need, that’s a pleasurable thing.”

After a bout of breast cancer, Mrs Sewell and her husband moved to Albany in 2004.

Despite battling a recurrence of breast cancer and a number of other cancer-related illnesses,. Mrs Sewell was still committed to serving the Albany community.

She became involved in Girl Guides Australia’s Albany Trefoil Guild in 2004, the Albany Regional Family History Society in 2006, and has volunteered at the St Vincent de Paul Society Albany retail shop since 2005.

Mrs Sewell has also volunteered at the Albany Holy Family Catholic Church as a choir member since 2005 and a scripture teacher from 2009-2015, and has volunteered with Friends of the Albany Hospital since 2013.

“Its a part of my life... my faith in God and my (Girl Guides) life that has encouraged me to get out there and do it,” Mrs Sewell said.

Albany’s Alice Rule has also received the prestigious award, which will be awarded to the women on April 7 at Government House.

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