11 December 2020

The Valleys takes out top YMCA award

The Valleys Lifestyle Centre was announced as the Jack Massey Team of the Year award winner during YMCA South Australia’s annual staff awards night at the St Clair Recreation Centre on Saturday, 5 December.

This year’s presentation evening was reduced due to COVID-19 restrictions, with The Valley’s staff team gathering and joining the event online to celebrate the extraordinary effort and achievement of the organisation in a year that has provided, arguably, the greatest challenges in its history.

The Valley’s award acknowledged the major contribution and impact made to the Mid North community by the Centre in 2019-20. Achievements and successes included:

  • Launch of the Holistic Wellness Program in conjunction with the Clare Medical Centre
  • Providing Holistic Wellness Program participant Max Smith with his first employment opportunity
  • Partnership with Play Partners SA which saw the employment of Dan Craig
  • Launch of the ‘Ride For A Brighter Side’ in partnership with the Kade McDonald Foundation
  • Achieved Fitness Australia Quality Accreditation
  • Launch of the inaugural Y SA Junior Squash Program
  • AskNicely score of 80.0 for the financial year

In a double victory for the Centre, the Holistic Wellness program was also named as the Program of the Year.

The event featured a new award format with a number of new categories. Highlights included recognition of the dedication of Whyalla Leap Takers Coordinator David Agius who was announced as the George Williams Employee of the Year and also the Excellence in Innovation award recipient for the Leap Online program.

The onset of COVID-19 restrictions and the challenges which that entailed were acknowledged with the presentation of a special Exceptional Circumstances award. This was won by Support Services duo Locky Haynes and Michael Smith who worked tirelessly to maintain engagement and support across the Y staff network during the crisis period. Michael Smith was also announced as the Emerging Leader of the Year.

Award recipients included: Tristian Severn (OSHC Support) – Excellence in Operational Management, Ashlea Freer (One Tree Hill OSHC) – Community Partnerships award, Amy MacKenzie (Community Strengthening Camping) – Engaging Future Minds, James Meisner (Youth Parliament Taskforce) - Volunteer of the Year and Travis Beard (St Clair Recreation Centre) - Outstanding Contribution by a Young Employee.

The evening was hosted by YMCA South Australia People, Risk and Compliance Manager Michael Collins and featured an address by CEO David Paterson, who said the efforts of all across the organisation was testament to the strength of the Y.