State Governor Luncheons with Tea Gardens Red Cross volunteers

Helen Janes and Judith Jackson welcomed Governor Margaret Beazley to the luncheon.

GOVERNOR Margaret Beazley, representative of the King, visited the Tea Gardens branch of the Australian Red Cross, at the Uniting Church Hall on Saturday 29 June.

This final event on the Vice-Regal visit to the Hunter region was made extra-special by the fact that the NSW Governor is a patron of the Red Cross in NSW, and this year the Tea Gardens group celebrates its 90th anniversary, too.

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“We thank you for your continued patronage, and our dedicated volunteers have been actively involved with Red Cross Emergency Services, including helping out at the Hunter Valley bus crash last year, and we contribute to the Trauma Teddies project,” explained Tea Gardens Red Cross President Helen Janes.

ARC Zone Representative Judith Jackson presented Her Excellency with a copy ‘Escaping the Flames’, a book collaborated upon by students of Coolongolook Public School, drawing upon their experiences in recent bushfires to create a touching tale featuring the crucial preparation and emergency planning that Red Cross encourages.

“The illustrations are beautiful; can I ask who wrote it?” the Governor enquired.

When assured it was the schoolchildren themselves, Her Excellency was genuinely encouraged, and chose to read a few passages to the room, noting the beautiful writing by the children.

“Thank you, this is very precious, and shows how we must appreciate our kids, how they can comprehend, write and draw the world they understand.

“Connections such as these, and with local schools and community groups here show a beautiful crossover between generations.”

The Governor and Red Cross volunteers then enjoyed a delicious luncheon, composed of several lovingly home-made sandwiches, pies, quiches, soups, Dorothy’s apricot and chocolate slice, and cakes, crafted by the Easters, whose tireless efforts in Red Cross bake sales will be sorely missed.

Governor Beazley undoubtedly enjoyed her time speaking with the Red Cross volunteers, even delaying her departure on the long road back to Sydney, and, in turn, impressed the local volunteers by being highly knowledgeable, down-to-earth, and having a range of interests to talk about over the local luncheon.

By Thomas O’KEEFE

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