Kenneth Bolt named NSW Volunteer of the Year

Kenneth Bolt, Paula Duncan & Victor DominelloA Ballina man who drives isolated patients to their renal dialysis treatments has been named 2013 NSW Volunteer of the Year.

Minister for Citizenship and Communities Victor Dominello presented the award to 64-year-old Kenneth Bolt from Ballina in a ceremony at the Kirribilli Club in Sydney on International Volunteer Day.

“As a community transport volunteer driver, Kenneth drives up to 100 kilometres a day to help frail patients living in isolated communities get to life-saving treatment,” Mr Dominello said.

“A proud Aboriginal man of the Bundjalung nation, Kenneth has been volunteering for more than a decade. During this time he has completed approximately 3500 trips, driving frail and sick people nearly 150,000 kilometres.”

Using his own car or a service-owned vehicle, Kenneth picks up his passengers from their homes, helping them into the car and driving them to renal units at Ballina or Lismore. He then takes them home following treatment sessions.

“Kidney disease is a serious problem especially among remote Aboriginal communities. Some sufferers feel uncomfortable seeking medical treatment but Kenneth has successfully bridged a divide through his tireless work,” Mr Dominello said.

“He provides his invaluable services three days per week, all year round, including public holidays and Christmas time, sometimes getting caught in Northern Rivers weather events.

“For his extraordinary dedication, commitment and attitude, there can be no doubt that Kenneth Bolt is a worthy winner of this prestigious award. Today the NSW Government, and the people of NSW, say thank you.”

PICTURE: Mr Bolt receives his award. Also pictured are Paula Duncan and Victor Dominello.


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