THE MALCOLM GRANT OAM VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR AWARD
Winner: Mr Gordon Levenson, New South Wales
2012 Malcolm Grant NHWA Volunteer of the Year awarded to Gordon Levenson.
Gordon is currently the Honorary Secretary of the Combined Tweed Heads Neighbourhood Watch Groups. Gordon has been an active and passionate member of Neighbourhood Watch in NSW since its inception in 1984. Gordon is also a NSW Police Force Volunteer in Policing and was one of the first eye watch precinct coordinators appointed in NSW.
In the last 28 years, Gordon has developed and continued to lead the Tweed /Byron communities in the development of 18 Neighbourhood Watch groups across his region. He has worked closely with state and local government to ensure a community voice was heard relating to safety in the community. Gordon has provided thousands of volunteer hours over the years in providing a crucial link between the communities of the Tweed and the NSW Police Force.
Gordon has been recognised by Mr Geoff Provost MP, Member for Tweed for his leadership, integrity and commitment, by being appointed as the Hon. Secretary for the combined Tweed Neighbourhood Watch Committee, which is chaired by Mr Provost.
Prior to the current NSW Government coming to power in 2011, the now Minister for Police attended a range of community meetings in various locations across NSW. In a meeting in Tweed Heads he was introduced to Mr Levenson, who spoke passionately about Neighbourhood Watch and the fact that NSW Police Force had an interest in Neighbourhood Watch. This was one of the catalysts for the NSW Liberal and National Coalition to announce the policy direction that now sees Project Eye watch as a new tool in community engagement and the reinvigoration of 21st Century Neighbourhood Watch.
As a result of Gordon’s commitment, the Tweed was selected as a pilot site for the NSW Police Eyewatch program. Gordon was trained as a precinct coordinator and has driven the creation of the Eyewatch program in the Tweed / Byron area of NSW. More so he has provided a mentoring and coaching role to many other precinct coordinators that have come on board with NSW Police.
Project “Eyewatch” represents the NSW Police Force’s strategy to reinvigorate community engagement, crime prevention and openness in policing, developing local solutions with the community to identify local crime and social disorder issues. Gordon as a Community precinct coordinator, reports crime issues in their area and together these problems are worked though with local solutions developed in a collaborative approach. Crime is being solved, with offenders being identified, arrested and placed before the courts faster than prior to the Eyewatch project.
Gordon is an extraordinary advocate for NHW and a wonderful example of a passionate community leader.
THE NHWA POLICE COMMISSIONERS AWARD
Winner: Sergeant Lawrie Nauschutz, Australia
Mr and Mrs Nauschutz with South Australian Police Commissioner Gary Burns.
Sergeant Lawrie Nauschutz has dedicated nearly 40 years as a community-focused Police Officer, 20 of those years as a Police Liaison Officer to four coastal groups. Community is paramount in his eyes. Due to his commitment to community, confidence has increased; Safer physical surrounds have been created due to mutual respect created between NHW, Police, residents, visitors and most importantly, youth.
Lawrie in his role as a Police Liaison Officer is committed to making vibrant positive NHW groups and attends as many events as possible. NHW Members are inspired by his commitment to QPS and allegiance to NHW.
Local NHW assist Police when anti-social behaviour occurs. One example is when Bundaberg, Bargara & Innes Park skatebowls were graffitied. 15 offences were solved when a local resident confided in Lawrie after a NHW meeting. NHW organised Bike & Road Safety Talks purely to reign in youngsters who were vandalizing property. It is through Lawrie’s attendance and guidance at NHW monthly meetings that have brought about successful change in the community.
Some particular highlights of Lawrie’s exception kindness above and beyond the call of duty are:
When Disaster Strikes: Lawrie was successful in organising and obtaining a home for a family who lost their home and all of their possessions in a fire in Bundaberg. He contacted various Bundaberg businesses. With their kind donations, the house was fully furnished with white goods, clothing, sporting equipment for the children and substantial money was donated to support and help this family.
Mentoring Youth & Others: People within the community have called upon Lawrie to speak to their children who may be heading down the wrong track. He was successful in getting some into the Agricultural College at Clare in the Burdekin. Recently, at an eating outlet in Bundaberg, the Chef introduced himself and thanked Lawrie for supporting him when he was only 14 years old by providing guidance and helping to get him away from the wrong crowd involved in drugs and crime.
Without doubt, Lawrie is an outstanding recipient of this award.
THE FEDERAL MINISTER – NHWA INNOVATION AWARD
Winner: WatchSA, Holden Hill
Detective Chief Inspector Brian Smith, Senior Sergeant Karen Robinson and Chris Hayes.
This year’s award was given to the WatchSA Holden Hill Local Service Area and was presented to Karen Robinson, APM, Manager of Crime Prevention Section Holden Hill. Accompanied by Detective Chief Inspector Brian Smith, Acting Officer in Charge, Holden Hill.
The NHWA Minister’s Innovation Award is aimed at recognizing a “community project” that has taken identified a significant community issue and found an innovative way to find a solution to that issue.The aim of this recognised project was to address cyber bullying through social networking sites. This is not only a criminal offence but is also leading to significant health and wellbeing issues in the community, including suicide. Young people are the largest current group affected by cyber bullying, but adults are also becoming involved primarily through the misuse of social network sites, such as Face book.The factors that contribute to the problem in the community is theft of electronic devices, due primarily to public apathy of not marking their electronic property and recording the serial numbers of their devices. Ignorance of the law in relation to cyber bullying and the consequences and also ignorance of safety and security measures available to public.
The project funds will be used for the provision of 600 USB’s containing internet safety messages and information on free download applications and programs re computer safety and security. Plus information on cyber safety and anti cyber bullying re social network sites.