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Djooraminda Centrecare social worker wins top award

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A social worker dedicated to helping Aboriginal children who are no longer able to live with their family has won the 2010 Social Worker of the Year Award.

Glenda Kickett was presented with the prestigious award by Rosalie Dwyer, the 2009 award winner, at last night’s Social Worker of the Year Awards ceremony, hosted by Curtin University.

She also won the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Award.

Ms Kickett has worked for the not-for-profit Centrecare’s Djooraminda branch in Lockridge for more than a decade. During this time, she has helped many Aboriginal children find a safe home, when living with their own family was no longer possible.

A Bachelor of Social Work graduate from the University of Western Australia (UWA), Ms Kickett also has completed a Master of Arts from Curtin University and is currently completing her PhD at UWA.

Tony Pietropiccolo, the Director of Centrecare, who nominated Ms Kickett for the prestigious honour, said she was a highly skilled social worker and manager who demonstrated outstanding qualities on a daily basis.

“Glenda is a strong Indigenous woman who radiates strength, leadership, determination and is an excellent role model. She is an inspiration to us all, she thoroughly deserves the award,” Mr Pietropiccolo said.

The Awards’ patron, Jan Stewart, CEO of Lotterywest, said Ms Kickett had impressed the judges with her selfless dedication to Indigenous children.

“Glenda is on call 24/7. She has continuously worked to keep Aboriginal sibling groups together with Aboriginal carers looking after them, keeping the culture and families together,” Ms Stewart said.

“I want to congratulate all the finalists for being nominated, for their determined efforts, and on their remarkable achievements.”

Other awards presented on the night were:
• The Rising Star Award – Sophie Heal, Wanslea, Scarborough
• Rural and Remote Practitioner Award – Emma White, the Department for Child Protection, Kununurra
• Agent of Change Award – Julie McKenzie, the Department for Child Protection, Fremantle
• Head, Heart and Hands Award – Joanne Delaney, Princess Margaret Hospital

The Social Worker of the Year winner received $4500, a trophy, and an awards certificate. The category award winners all received $1500 and an awards certificate.

Major sponsors of the Awards include GESB, the Department for Child Protection, KPMG Australia, Richmond Fellowship WA and Edith Cowan University.

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