Channel 9 Young Achiever Awards

2017 Finalists

Department for Communities and Social Inclusion Aboriginal Achievement Award

Anna Dowling, 24 of Blair Athol works in Aboriginal health research. Anna was highly commended for her co-presentation on her stroke research work at the 2016 Aboriginal Health Research Showcase. Also an artist, Anna works to create art that respects and promotes Aboriginal knowledge and perspectives in the community. Her artwork has been used for campaigns such as ‘Give up Smokes for Good’ and ‘Reconciliation SA Breakfast Auction’. She was awarded the 2016 Max Indigenous Art Award.

Celine Graham, 29 of Craigmore is a Narrunga/Kaurna woman who works as an Aboriginal Liaison Officer. She has played an active role in developing a food distribution program and research on domestic violence clients and their pets. Celine has participated in numerous community events to raise and promote issues relevant to the Aboriginal Community. She has completed studies in Family Dispute Resolution and has applied to be accepted into Law, hoping to specialise in Family and Child Protection Law.

Ellie Lovegrove, 22 of Bellevue Heights is a proud Ngarrindjeri woman, a singer and a member of the Tal-Kin-Jeri Dance Group. She has toured throughout Australia, creating music that empowers; celebrates her Aboriginality and challenges negative stereotypes. Ellie visits schools and speaks to students about racism and building resilience. She presented at the Aboriginal Youth Engagement Creative Health Workshop educating young people on sexual health and safety. Ellie mentors young Aboriginal people and is a role model by example.

Kira Bain, 19 of Direk is from the Raukkan and Ngarrindjeri peoples. She works as a Community Mentor at Tauondi Aboriginal College and this year is a co-facilitator teaching the Kaurna Language. Kira is also a dance teacher of the indigenous dance troupe, Kuma Kaaru Dance Group. Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal organisations regularly request Kira to attend public speaking engagements and to provide the Acknowledgement of Country in the Kaurna language. Kira was awarded her University’s Indigenous Education Award.

Multicultural Youth South Australia Spirit of Resilience Award

Faith Lawrence Abio, 22 of Noarlunga arrived in Australia as a refuge when she was 9, having spent most of her childhood in a Kenyan refugee camp. Faith volunteers as a role model for young refugees, drawing on her experiences to relate and empathise with them. Using her passion for soccer, she connects with disadvantaged young people and encourages them to get involved in sports as a diversion from youth offending and drug and alcohol abuse.

Gulima Wahidi, 20 of Elizabeth East arrived in Australia at the age of 9 with no English. She is currently studying Law and International Studies and working as a Law Clerk. Gulima helped to initiate an organisation named “Afghan Professionals Australia” to connect and support each other to successfully build their careers. Gulima is the former president and founder of the Adelaide Afghan Students Association and a Student Health and Well-being Ambassador at her University. She also volunteers at Justice for Refugees SA.

Jemal Mussa, 25 of Brooklyn Park lived in a Kenyan refugee camp for seven years before moving to Australia. He founded the Oromo Youth Association and volunteers as a soccer coach and mentor. Jemal raised $3,500 to purchase soccer equipment and received donations of 140 kilos of soccer boots and shirts, which he sent to the refugee camp. When Jemal visited the camp, he arranged a soccer tournament. For this initiative, Jemal received a 2016 Pride of Australia Award.

Kbora Ali, 19 of Keswick arrived from Afghanistan in 2007 as a refugee. At school, she organised and ran cultural events promoting unity and acceptance of diverse cultures and beliefs. Kbora was a significant part of the #achildlikeme initiative, supporting and creating awareness for children locked up in Australian detention centres. She achieved an ATAR of 97, is an international Martial arts competitor and the first female of Muslim Afghan refugee background to be recruited in the Australian Army.

Rural Doctors Workforce Agency Rural Health Award

Emma Kelly, 22 of Walkerville initiated the Yalata Kidney Health Festival. Six medical and nursing students travelled to the remote indigenous community of Yalata to run educational and fun workshops and activities at the local school and healthcare centres. Hosted over three days, the Festival has a strong emphasis on teaching and inspiring community members on ways to maintain good kidney health. Emma has been invited to present about the festival at the WONCA Rural Health Conference.

Luke Vater, 24 of Saddleworth has volunteered with the SA Ambulance Service for 5 years. He improved volunteer training by initiating a simulation based program, which has now been implemented state-wide. Luke created a community campaign, with a social media strategy to boost volunteer numbers, resulting in the highest number of recruits for 10 years. He is a student ambassador and a member of the student advisory group, where he promotes rural health and advocates for rural medical students.

Dr Susan Clift-Bowden, 28 of Koolunga graduated from dentistry and moved to Clare, where she divides her time between private practice and the South Australian Dental Service. Susan has initiated regular voluntary visits to the local aged care facilities, where they check the resident’s oral health and perform basic hygiene and preventive care. Susan has been a Rotarian since 2014 and has improved youth engagement during her time. Susan has volunteered as a dentist in Vanuatu and Cambodia.

Dr Cicy Li, 24 of Rostrevor is passionate about rural and indigenous health. For the past six years, she has worked in many rural communities and actively engaged with rural health organisations to increase student interest in rural and remote health. Cicy is a strong advocate for Indigenous health, and is part of a program to encourage future doctors to work in Indigenous health. Cicy has presented about Indigenous health at two national conferences and multiple other forums.

Santos Regional Service Award

Breeanna Warne, 17 of Port Pirie has raised almost $10,000 for cancer charities. She organised fundraisers for the World’s Greatest Shave and the Make-A-Wish Port Pirie Branch. Breenana started a Go-Fund-Me page and garnered the support of the Mayor, family and friends. She contacted schools and enquired if she could host morning teas and wacky hair days, and talk about her personal story. Breeana has been interviewed by the local news station and radio to help spread her message.

Jackson Wickham, 17 of Renmark is the youngest ever deckhand on the PS Industry, an antique paddle steamer and tourist attraction. He is on the PS Industry management committee and is the editor of their newsletter. He is also a member of Cobdogla Steam & Irrigation Museum and Bangalore Homestead. Jackson has also attained his bronze medallion, white card and boat license. Jackson won Renmark’s 2015 Young Citizen of the year and his goal is to be a Murray Master.

Stefan Anesbury, 20 of Gawler East is the rural ambassador for the Gawler Show Society. He was the 2016 South Australian Young Judge Champion, Angora Goat & Mohair Fleece and will represent SA in the 2017 national awards. Stefan is an active member of the Councils Youth Advisory Committee, encouraging young people to participate in community planning meetings. He was the 2017 Australia Day Gawler Young Citizen of the Year, will be a 2018 Judge and assist with Council Events.

Scouts SA Leadership Award

Elisabeth Beltrame, 28 of Marleston has been an active leader in Rotary International for over eight years and facilitates the Rotary Youth Leadership and Enrichment Programs. In 2012, Elisabeth established the Rotaract Club of Adelaide City for 18-30 year old's. Last year, she became the youngest President in the District. She has brought to her club fresh ideas and young members with a focus on fundraising for youth and women in developing countries and empowering women through education.

Liam Goodrich, 19 of Andrews Farm has volunteered for many organisations working with mental health, homelessness and domestic violence issues. In 2015, Liam became the South Australian advocate for “Domestic Violence Is Never Acceptable”. He was the key speaker for a White Ribbon fundraiser, raising awareness on domestic violence within gay and lesbian relationships. He is a member of the Playford Youth Advisory Committee and the Youth Affairs Council of South Australia. Liam is running for Council in 2018.

Maddi Hegarty, 18 of Greenock was a student mentor with the Youth Environment Council of SA for three years. She was a keynote speaker at the 2016 Australian Association for Environmental Education Conference and received a KESAB award for “outstanding contribution to school community education”. Maddie has led many environmental and humanitarian projects, including volunteering in Cambodia and the World Vision 40-hour Famine. She has received many awards including a 2016 Australian Defence Force Long Tan Leadership and Teamwork Award.

The Coffee Club Arts and Fashion Award

Chris Dyke, 25 of Sellicks Beach is a dancer with Restless Dance Theatre Ensemble. He is the Disability Ambassador for Dancenorth Australia and a recipient of Carclew’s fellowship scholarship. Chris has created several solo performances, debuted as a director in 2016 and been in multiple music clips. Chris relocated to Adelaide to access creative development opportunities in the integrated dance sector. He is now working hard to break into the mainstream dance sector as a director and performer.

Erin Fowler, 28 of Adelaide is a dancer, choreographer and musician. Her award winning, environmental dance film “Gaia” has been screened across the world at 23 film festivals. Erin is working on a documentary investigating the environmental and culturally significant sacred river Nila in Southern India. In 2013 Erin started “The Mill”, with co-Artistic Director, Amber Cronin, a creative hub for local artists with an internationally reaching program of opportunities. Since inception, "The Mill” has raised over $150,000 in funds to support artists.

Manal Younus, 22 of Modbury Heights is a writer, performance artist and creative producer. She released her self-published collection of poetry called Reap in 2015. Manal co-developed and performed in ‘Responding to Racism’, an interactive play that has been presented regionally. She runs workshops for young people from migrant backgrounds and initiated a monthly cultural poetry night. Manal presents a weekly radio show centred on young people from migrant backgrounds and was a Young South Australian of the Year Finalist.

The University of Adelaide - Science and Technology Award

Joel Fuller, 28 of Wollstonecraft was awarded a Fulbright scholarship in the US to develop new methods for monitoring the health of athletes using wearable technology. Joel’s PhD’s research in exercise, nutrition and activity was awarded a Vice Chancellor & President's scholarship. He has written 14 papers in high-ranking journals. Joel established an injury prevention service for the SANFL, annually helping over 300 junior footballers. He is also researching the improvement that exercise makes to cancer survivors quality of life.

Dr John Arnold, 28 of North Plympton is a Podiatrist and clinical researcher, aiming to improve the lives of adults suffering with debilitating musculoskeletal conditions. John has been awarded over half a million in research funding and has published his findings extensively. He has written media articles, presented at 15 scientific conferences and given presentations for Arthritis Australia on awareness and understanding of foot disorders. John was recently awarded a National Research Fellowship to continue his research on foot osteoarthritis.

Katharina Richter, 29 of Hallett Cove is a medical researcher, who develops novel treatments against antibiotic-resistant superbugs which cause devastating and life-threatening diseases. She has won several awards, scholarships and fellowships. She launched ‘Pint of Science Festival’, showcasing science in a pub environment. Katharina has developed and patented a promising antibiotic-free treatment on superbugs which is undergoing clinical trials. Whilst the team's focus is sinusitis, the approach may have a wide range of applications, such as treating chronic wounds.

Ysabella Van Sebille, 27 of Beulah Park is completing her PhD researching the toxic effects of anti-cancer therapies on the gastrointestinal tract. Her research has been translated into clinical trials and has received many awards. Ysabella has been invited to write the international clinical guidelines for the prevention and management of mucositis. Ysabella is an ambassador for women in science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine. She mentors students and volunteers as a tutor for the Australian Refugee Association.

University Senior College Create Change Award

Bryce Eldredge, 23 of Kybunga launched The Rural Network, an online community website in 2016. The Rural Network assists over 63 rural South Australian communities who need to outsource tasks, to find skilled people. Bryce is a member of the CFS, the Australian Defence Force Reserves and volunteers at local sporting clubs. He educates entrepreneurs in start-up businesses and continues to work in the family’s farming business. Bryce studied Business & Entrepreneurship to assist him in running his business.

Mathew D'Onofrio, 19 of Unley is a qualified First Responder for St. John Ambulance. After seeing many people in need of medical and hospital assistance after a party, he began Nightlife First Aid. Nightlife First Aid provides a service specialised for parties and other events; to create safe partying environments for young people. Matthew was a finalist in City of Unley's Fish Tank (Amateur Shark Tank) and a South Australian State Finalist for Australian of the Year.

Tessa Henwood-Mitchell, 29 of Aldinga Beach founded not-for-profit organisation TIA (Spanish for Aunty) in 2009. TIA’s ValenTIA (meaning ‘courage’) Transition Program, has provided workshops for 100 Bolivian teenagers to support transition into independent living after exiting state care. Tessa has raised over $200,000 and TIA has 4 local Bolivian staff and over 100 volunteers. TIA also created a music and computer program for blind and vision impaired children and repaired a broken water system at a children’s home in Bolivia.

Websters Lawyers Service to the Community Award

Emmah Evans, 29 of Woodcroft is a Cystic Fibrosis fighter, a Mother, a wife, an author and a motivational speaker. She is an Ambassador for both Cure4CF Foundation and Cystic Fibrosis Australia. Emmah has been interviewed on television and press, raising awareness that 1 in 25 people carry the CF gene. In 2016, she spent over 500 hours organising a high tea ‘Fearless’, raising over $14,000 for Cure4CF Foundation. Her Facebook page “CF Mummy” has 3,400 followers.

Matilda Hutchinson, 26 of Sellicks Beach suffers from severe endometriosis, causing constant pain. Matilda founded Endometriosis Awareness Adelaide, an online support network for women suffering from endometriosis. She ran the 2017 Endometriosis Awareness Ball to raise awareness and much needed funds for medical research. Matilda also volunteers as an animal rescue fosterer and her long term goal is to complete her vet nursing studies and open her own rescue centre. Matilda also runs her own bridal store, Project Wifey.

Ysabella Van Sebille, 27 of Beulah Park is researching for her PhD, the toxic effects of anti-cancer therapies on the gastrointestinal tract. She has a passion for promoting education, especially science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine, to both women, and underprivileged groups. Ysabella volunteers weekly at the Australian Refugee Association, tutoring and mentoring students in science subjects. She volunteered in the Indigenous Tutorial Assistance Program, helping Indigenous women studying nursing. She co-founded The University of Adelaide’s student-led Teaching Awards.

Zac Cannell, 28 of Adelaide is a passionate and proud transgender man promoting the health, well-being and safety of the gender diverse community. Zac is co-founder of the peer support group FTMen-SA, providing support to over 70 transmen and their families. Zac has a degree in Social Work and currently works for SHine SA as a Sexual Health Counsellor. He volunteered as an SES Rescue Volunteer for over three years and also volunteers for numerous online support groups.

Worldwide Printing Solutions Sports Award

Aidan Barry, 19 of Marion has been playing golf since he was 8, table tennis since 14, and soccer from the age of 6. Despite serious medical issues and disabilities from birth, Aidan has never let this hold him back. He has performed multiple public speaking commitments promoting the benefits of sport and technology, and the impact on young people with disabilities. The National Amputee Golf Association have invited him to play in the International Tournament in Texas later this year.

Brayden Davidson OAM, 19 of Woodcroft was born with cerebral palsy. He has competed in State, National and World Championships and represented Australia at the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games. Brayden won the gold medal in the Men's Long Jump T38 at the Rio Paralympics with a jump of 5.62 m, a personal best by 11cm. This jump was also a Paralympic Record. Brayden was awarded a Talented Athlete Award and a Paralympic Scholarship by the South Australian Sports Institute.

Kyle Chalmers OAM, 18 of Glenelg North was the first Australian in 48 years to win Gold in the 100m Freestyle. He left the 2016 Rio Olympics with an additional 2 Bronze medals in the 4x100m freestyle and medley relays. He was awarded the 2016 Male Sports Person of the Year and recently was inducted into the South Australian Swimming Hall of Fame. This year, Kyle was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for his services to swimming.