The community of Heyfield has been named as the inaugural winner of Australia’s Strongest and Most Resilient Community at this year’s national Power to the People Conference in Melbourne.
Awarded by the Municipal Association of Victoria, in conjunction with the Bank of Ideas, more than 50 applications were received from communities and councils across the country.
Wellington Shire Councillor and staunchly proud Heyfield resident Malcolm Hole was proud as punch being at there ceremony to announce the winner, with other members of the Heyfield community.
“The people of Heyfield have taken a real beating over the past few years, with bushfires, drought and all the uncertainties of its major employer the Ash Timber mill.
“But, the people of Heyfield never give up and they have fought tooth and nail to keep this community together and thriving.
“It is a very proud day for the people of Heyfield.”
Wellington Shire Council Mayor Carolyn Crossley congratulated the Heyfield community, saying this award was incredibly prestigious for a population of under 2000 people.
“What an incredible achievement for the town of Heyfield,” she said.
“We have always known that Heyfield is a special place and they build them tough out there, but to have this acknowledgement on a national scale is incredible and something to really celebrate.
“We already know that volunteers are the backbone of rural communities, but I think we can all acknowledge the way Heyfield volunteers work together through the prosperous and tough times for the betterment of their community is an example for other towns to learn from.”
Heyfield’s application for the award was compiled by locals Glenys McBride, Caroline Trevorrow and Wendy Rhodes, with assistance from Wellington Shire Council.