A&F Bulletin - Queen's Birthday Honours

Columns
Monday, June 13, 2016

It was fantastic to see three very deserving people from Marlborough and Kaikoura recognised in this year’s Queens Birthday Honours.

They were Dr Dianne McCarthy and Christine Brunt, of Blenheim and Melville Syme from Kaikōura.

I extend my congratulations to all three of these worthy recipients for their awards, which were received on the very special occasion of Her Majesty’s 90th birthday.

These people, and all those who appear on the honours list, have dedicated energy, drive and years of their lives to pursue a passion that benefits others, whether it be within their chosen profession or in a purely community-based voluntary position.

What makes Queens Honours awards particularly special is that the recipients were nominated by their own peers, or by other members of the public who appreciate what they have done.

Through their hard work or volunteer roles, these stand-out individuals have made a difference to the lives of others: The annual Queens Birthday Honours are an opportunity for all of us to recognise that hard work which so often happens behind the scenes and out of the limelight.

It is people like them who bring out the best in their community – and keep the all-important community spirit alive - through generosity, dedication and a passion for the place they live in.

These are such important attributes to have in our rural communities.

Having grown up on a farm myself, I have experienced first-hand that a sense of community truly forms the fabric of provincial New Zealand: This is something that we must preserve and celebrate.

In my role as MP, too, I have seen on many occasions how rural communities have banded together to overcome adversity, where organised efforts to provide help and assistance are often spearheaded by one or more dedicated individuals.

Some examples are of course the drought, earthquakes and wind events, but there are also examples of longer-term issues such as irrigation, which have all required extensive input, time and energy from local residents.

Then there are the all-important rural events such as the local A&P Show which form such an integral part of life in the country, but would not happen without the hardworking people who offer their time to make it happen.

If you know a person worthy of a Queens Birthday honour, please contact my office to begin the nomination process: Phone 579 3204, visit at 22 Scott Street, Blenheim, or email stuart.smithmp@parliament.govt.nz