A MAN who continues to manage a social media page giving up-to-date information about the COVID-19 pandemic in Ballarat has been named Ballarat's Citizen of the Year at a ceremony held on Tuesday afternoon.
Daniel Cook said he had worked on the Facebook group, which has attracted nearly 15,000 contributors, to fill a hole in what he felt was needed in Ballarat about information specific to the community.
"For some in the community it has been quite hard to find things like exposure site lists, so we wanted to make it an easy place for people to find the information and go from there," he said.
"Every day I get the government data emailed to me on individual and active cases throughout Ballarat.
"It's such an important time for people and winning this is incredibly humbling and it belongs to every member of the community."
The Young Citizen of the year was won by Wendouree CFA firefighter Bradley Woods. Mr Woods was unable to attend the ceremony.
Mr Woods was honoured for his years of volunteer service protecting the community.
A GROUP of just 10 people who worked to create almost 2500 free meals in just less than two weeks to help others get through separate lockdowns has been rewarded as Ballarat's Community Event of the Year winners.
Members of the Ballarat Keralites' Foundation of Australia pulled together as one to cook, package and deliver the meals to members of the community that might have been struggling during the various lockdowns in 2021.
BKFA chairman Sino Thomas said the small gathering allowances meant only a small group of people could work together to create the meals.
"We put together enough food for about 800 to 1000 people, with three meals for each person," Mr Thomas said.
"Some people wouldn't accept more than one meal, so we were able to spread to out to as many people as we could.
"The first lockdown we did it over three days, and it was about 800 meals, then the second time we did it again over a week where we created another 1500-1600.
"We got some lovely responses from the community who have been very thankful to work we have done."
Mr Thomas said it was hard to express in words what winning an award like this meant to the BKFA.
"It's great for our community and group. It was a big job that had to be done in a short time and we were able to do it," he said.
Wendouree MP Juliana Addison said she had seen the work which was coordinated with St Patrick's Cathedral first hand.
"Since I've first come in contact with this amazing group, their clear mission is that Australia and Ballarat has welcomed them and they feel a great obligation to contribute back," she said.
"For new people in our community to give something back, this award is just so deserving.
"If you go down to St Patrick's Cathedral and see the work they do, they are just amazing. It's a wonderful day for such a deserving group in the community."
Have you signed up to The Courier's variety of news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in Ballarat.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.