The city of Port Augusta in South Australia has recognised the efforts of local organisations and individuals in its inaugural aged care awards.

Port Augusta City Council organised the awards program this year and it plans to make it an annual event.

The council’s director of community services, Anne O’Reilly said there had been a strong response to the awards with 14 nominations for the individual category and 13 for the group category.

“While this year we have selected very worthy winners, it must be said that all of the nominees for the awards deserve recognition,” she said.

The group award went to the city’s Meals on Wheels provider and the individual award was given to Jill Welk for her long service in assisting aged pensioners.

Meals on Wheels was recognised for over 30 years of service to the Port Augusta community.

“For some Meals on Wheels recipients this may be the only social contact they have and therefore it goes further than the delivery of a meal,” Mrs O’Reilly said.

“The longevity of this organisation clearly demonstrates the high commitment by our local community through volunteering their services over such a wide span of years.”

The winner of the individual award, Jill Welk has been assisting older citizens for more than 20 years as secretary of the Port Augusta Pensioners Association. Ms Welk has also served on the board of the South Australian Pensioners Association.

“[Ms Welk] has dedicated much of her life to assisting the older members of our community and is a worthy recipient of this inaugural award,” Mrs O’Reilly said.

The awards were presented at the city’s Positive Ageing Expo.

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