January 23rd saw 74 Local Legends announced by Jim Chalmers MP - Member for Rankin at the annual Logan Local Legend Awards, including our very own staff members Blaise Itabelo & Anna Rolandsen and Logan Helping Hands volunteers Des Clamp and Henry O'Donoghue! 

Now in its fourth year, the Local Legends Awards recognise those who make an outstanding contribution to the Logan community. Established by Federal Member for Rankin Jim Chalmers, they aim to celebrate and acknowledge people who enhance the quality of life of locals by dedicating their skills, enthusiasm and energy to a diverse range of causes. 

Access staff member Blaise works tirelessly in the community, not only in his role as Community Development Coordinator, but as a member of the broader community. He is highly respected and regarded as a community leader. He is renowned for always going the extra mile to assist members of the community in whatever capacity he can. He offers his time to doing volunteer work inside and outside the organisation with a number of various community groups. His unwavering hospitality, friendliness and enthusiasm for life touches and inspires people wherever he goes.

Anna is a compassionate, dedicated and relentless in her ability to support those in need. In addition to volunteering her time and skill to the local community, the Education Support Services Coordinator has recently completed 10 months in Uganda as part of the Operation Uganda Project. Prior to that, she spent 11 months in Cambodia as part of a rescue program and in January, she travelled to the Middle East to assist refugees in the area and to support services already in place in the region.

Des has dedicated more than four decades of his life to assisting and working with various charities. He was instrumental in the inception and establishment of Access, which for 30 years has changed countless lives for the better. Des says he has rarely had a weekend to himself as someone is always calling on him for help, whether it is to drive a client to an appointment, help fix water or electricity issues or to take newly arrived refugees on a beach trip.

Over the years, he has opened his home to many families who needed a place to sleep and get back on their feet. Now at 86 years of age, Des still willingly volunteers whenever and wherever needed, and when asked about the amount of time he has spent volunteering over the last three decades, Des says, “From my own experience, you have to have complete faith, dedication and work every hour of the day. The reward is not what you do, but what you get out of it and the loving people in your life who help you do it. Volunteering is a passion which gives you reason to accept each day as it comes.”

Congratulations to all deserving winners and nominees!