LORRAINE Kefford is known among the community for her selfless and caring nature, with those attributes now recognised in an official capacity.
She has been added to the NSW government's Hidden Treasures Honour Roll, making her countless years of service to organisations such as the Rural Fire Service, Leeton-Whitton Football and Netball Club, Whitton Skate Park committee, Whitton Tidy Towns committee, school P&Cs and many more.
For all of these many and varied groups, Mrs Kefford has held every title imaginable and continues to do so today.
She also remains an active firefighter volunteer with the Whitton RFS brigade.
Mrs Kefford was presented with the Hidden Treasures Honour Roll award recently and said it was something she never expected.
"I've always been involved in something throughout my life and it's very fulfilling, but you don't get into it for the accolades," she said.
"In saying that, it's a lovely feeling to be recognised. There are a lot of people out there who do great things for our community, but I was definitely a little bit chuffed to receive this award.
"It's definitely special."
Mrs Kefford's award is an annual initiative of the Department of Primary Industries' Rural Women's Network.
It recognises the efforts of female volunteers in NSW and promotes the valuable role of volunteering to the community.
According to the government, the growing list of more than 900 rural women volunteers is a testament to the generosity and hard work of so many women who are publicly appreciated by their community as part of this project.
Mrs Kefford received her award from Member for Murray Helen Dalton, who said the community was forever grateful for her hard work and dedication.
"As we endure another awful bushfire season, we are eternally grateful to the likes of Lorraine Kefford," Mrs Dalton said.
"It was my absolute pleasure to award Lorraine with her NSW Department of Primary Industries Hidden Treasure award for her incredible service to her community over the past two decades, particularly as president of the Whitton branch of the NSW RFS.
"I really hope Lorraine inspires other young women and men to volunteer for the RFS."
Mrs Kefford said volunteering did require people to give up some of their time, but she worked on the philosophy of "many hands make light work".
"Volunteering is very rewarding and it can be a bit of work sometimes, but if more people put their hand up to be involved, the load could be shared, which would mean less work for everyone," Mrs Kefford said.
"I think once you give something a go, you really develop a passion for it."
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