Valuable volunteers honoured with state award

Published 3:53pm 7 November 2022

Valuable volunteers honoured with state award
Words by Jodie Powell

An amazing army of volunteers that helps bring tourism and events to life across the Moreton Bay Region has won a silver award at the 2022 Queensland Tourism Awards.

They join Maiala Park Lodge in success on the state stage, with the Mount Glorious boutique accommodation provider winning Judges’ Choice.

Moreton Bay Region Industry and Tourism’s (MBRIT) Volunteer Team won the Silver Award in the Outstanding Contribution by a Volunteer or Volunteer Group category.

It’s the second award for MBRIT volunteers this year – the Redcliffe Jetty Visitor Information Centre was named Queensland’s Visitor Information Centre of the Year in the Local Government category for the second year in a row.

The Queensland Tourism Awards recognise new and established iconic tourism operations from across the state.

Important ambassadors

The volunteer award celebrates the strong, ongoing personal commitment made by an individual or team of volunteers who freely give their time and skill, contributing to the professionalism of the industry and the positive image of tourism in Queensland.

MBRIT Manager of Visitor Services and Industry Engagement Nicky Young says the 361 tourism and events volunteers registered with MBRIT ensure visitors have the best possible experience in the Moreton Bay Region.

The roles volunteers play are as varied as their backgrounds – some help to set up and pack down events aimed at crowds ranging from a few hundred at Music in the Park to tens of thousands at the Moreton Bay Food and Wine Festival, while others fill a regular slot at visitor centres.

Such is their commitment to the region, one volunteer has contributed 724 hours in the past 12 months, while another has completed 138 shifts.

“It varies – some might only volunteer three or four times in a year, our tourism centre volunteers might do a day or more a week,” Nicky says.

She says volunteers at the region’s seven visitor information centres are vital ambassadors for the region – whether they’re knowledgeable long-time locals or newcomers filled with curiosity and enthusiasm.

Specialised training

“We have people who were teachers, or working in tourism or mums with grown up kids who know what’s in the region because they’ve had visitors themselves,” Nicky says.

“For most of them, they’re here because they have some time to spare and they like the program we offer as well.

“We have a training program and we offer famil tours where they hop on a bus and go for a trip around the region - they might go to Woodfordia or do a tour of Redcliffe or Samford.

“It’s one thing reading about something in a brochure, but it’s another seeing it and doing it themselves.

|“If people have been there and seen it and done it, they have more valuable insights.”|

To join the volunteer team email [email protected]

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