2016 Manningham Citizens of the Year announced

29 Jan 2016
Healthy Community

Manningham Council and the local community celebrated Australia Day at the Civic Offices with the traditional Citizenship Ceremony, singing of the national anthem and entertainment.

One of the highlights of the event was the presentation of the annual Citizen and Young Citizen of the Year Awards to citizens who have made outstanding contributions to the local community.

Manningham Mayor, Cr Jennifer Yang, announced that the 2016 Citizen of the Year is Mr Geoff Kloot and the Young Citizen of the Year is Chandler Lancaster.

“The spirit of Manningham is about giving to the community and again this year the Manningham Citizen of the Year and Young Citizen of the Year are two inspirational people who have enriched our community life.”

“On behalf of the local community I would like to congratulate both Geoff and Chandler on their achievement and thank them for their dedication and contribution to the lives of so many,” she said.

Citizen of the Year, Mr Geoff Kloot

Geoff has lived in Doncaster for more than 40 years and both during his career as a senior engineer at VicRoads and following his retirement he has been strongly involved in Neighbourhood Watch.

Thirty years ago Geoff was a founding member of  the Doncaster Area (Manningham) Neighbourhood Watch and has been strongly involved ever since, holding positions of chairman/secretary of various groups in Doncaster.

He has been on the board of Neighbourhood Watch Australasia and currently on the board of Neighbourhood Watch Victoria in the role of acting CEO and Secretary.

Geoff has given his time, advice, understanding, leadership and hands on involvement in liaison between police and residents, empowering them to become actively involved in preventing crime in the community

He has been actively involved in the development and implementation of a number of innovative neighbourhood security measures including:

  • A children activity book (trialled at Serpell Primary School) to teach young children about safety and NHW
  • A welcome pack for new residents
  • Safe Plates – a program to replace screws on registration plates with security screws so that the plates cannot be stolen and used in crimes
  • Working with Warrandyte and Donvale residents to set up NHW in those areas.

Further afield he works in the Carlton area to assist residents in social housing to run a Neighbourhood Watch to prevent crime

Young Citizen of the Year is Chandler Lancaster.

While not yet 17 years old, Chandler has shown a strong commitment to volunteering to enrich the lives of those people he meets.

Chandler has been a member of the 3rd Doncaster East Scout Group for four years and once he was old enough he completed the Scout Youth Helper course.

Chandler has chosen a path where volunteering plays an important part in his life, working as a volunteer and part time helper at Donvale Christian College assisting with general maintenance of the buildings and surrounding grounds.

He is a helper at the Mooroolbark East Primary School for special needs children and he is also an active member of the Warrandyte Uniting Church, where he helps with the Scripture Union’s Beach Mission at Torquay, assists in church working bees and operates the special sound system at Sunday schools.

He has already earned the Duke of Edinburgh International Award, Bronze level and is working towards the Silver level and the Queen’s Scout Award.

While these awards are about self development, there is a large component of the requirements where the young people volunteers their time to help others.

Chandler is a Youth Helper for the 3rd Doncaster East Cub Scout Pack, providing enormous support to the Leaders with his extensive knowledge of scouting technical skills and his leaderships skills in planning and delivering the program.

He has also earned the respect of Leaders within the District for his commitment and maturity when assisting on camps and training days.                                                  

The Citizen and Young Citizen of the Year awards are administered by Manningham Council, with the awards supplied by the Australia Day Committee (Victoria).