Two Cranbourne residents have been recognised for their outstanding volunteering efforts, during the Victorian Premier’s Volunteer Champions Awards.

At Monday’s awards ceremony at Government House, Mrs Sally Ritter received the Leadership award for volunteering in Backpacks 4 VIC Kids, and the team of Cranbourne Regional Uniting Club received the Team award for their achievements.

Member for Cranbourne Jude Perera MP congratulated the Cranbourne Regional Uniting Club team and Mrs Sally Ritter for representing the region and dedicating their time to volunteering in the community.

They join 60 volunteers across the state who were formally recognised at the ceremony, spanning support for a range of different communities and causes as well as a range of services and activities.

The Premier’s Volunteer of the Year Award went to equality advocate Riley Briese, for helping change the landscape of care and support for young transgender people in regional Victoria.

Mr Briese is the founder of Gateway Health Gender Service and received the Dame Elisabeth Murdoch Trophy at the ceremony and $10,000 for his charity of choice.

The Volunteer Champions Awards celebrate the extraordinary contributions of all Victorian volunteers, in areas such as health, sport, education, culture, community, environment, science and animal welfare.

The Andrews Labor Government is investing $145,000 in 2018-19 to investigate ways to strengthen and diversify the volunteering sector, to build on the remarkable contribution volunteers make across our community.

There are more than 1.5 million volunteers across Victoria, contributing $23 billion to the state’s economy. For more information on the winners, visit volunteer.vic.gov.au/awards

Quotes attributed to Member for Cranbourne Jude Perera MP

“We are proud of Mrs Sally Ritter, team Cranbourne Regional Uniting Club for their incredible commitment to volunteering and strengthening our community.”

“Cranbourne is a great place to volunteer and I encourage more people to consider getting involved.”

“The benefits of volunteering are endless and can help people make new friendships and learn new skills.”