Clutha District Council was proud to honour Jill Wallace recently with a Community Services Award for her outstanding contribution to the Otago Community Hospice (OCH).
She has been a standout volunteer supporter as a collector on street appeal days and especially for growing and selling potted plants for OCH.
‘‘Jill’s commitment to the community and her green thumb skills have made a significant impact,’’ a council spokesperson said.
‘‘The funds raised from the sale of these pot plants will help the OCH continue to provide compassionate care and support to those in need.
‘‘Her efforts exemplify the power of community involvement and the positive change that can be achieved through individual initiatives. Her dedication to making a difference in the lives of others is truly commendable, and we are proud to honour her for her remarkable work.’’
Mrs Wallace has been the Lawrence OCH co-ordinator for about 15 years and had the idea to introduce plant sales into collections about four years ago.
‘‘Plants literally bring life and soul into a room, which is particularly good for sick people,’’she said.
‘‘I’m a cancer survivor and the community’s been very good to us — especially when I was sick.’’
Her innovations have created conduits for others to act charitably.
‘‘Collecting face-to-face isn’t for everyone, so the plants create options for others to contribute in a way that suits them and it seems to have taken off.’’
Helpers locally and as far away as Dunedin contribute by raising plants, and the living, durable products are now regularly available at retailers and a nearby motorhome park.
‘‘Jill is a longtime supporter of Otago Hospice and we are so incredibly grateful to her for always flying the hospice flag,’’ OCH fundraising co-ordinator Amy Ruthven said.