Volunteering is time willingly given for the common good and without financial gain

Environment in good hands

BDEC Logo Jpeg

Environment in Good Hands   BDEC Fascigale


The Busselton-Dunsborough Environment Centre (BDEC) is a community organisation based in Busselton. The organisation aims to foster a sense of community ownership of the natural environment in order to increase awareness of local environmental issues. The Centre also strives to increase public involvement in environmental projects and protection activities throughout the local region.

Recently 20 children and 27 adults had a great day out planting in the Tuart Forest. This event is held annually by BDEC and not only provides a wonderful family day out but helps the future health of our unique Tuart Forest reserves. Besides the hands on environmental care BDEC advocates for the environment through numerous avenues including submissions to relevant decision making bodies, monitoring of environmentally sensitive projects and proposals, sourcing funds for targeted intervention such as possum habitat and care, revegetation and planting and liaising with the City of Busselton to work in partnership towards sustainable planning and development.

  BDEC also have available a wonderful booklet A Journey into the Ludlow Tuart Forest. This vibrant 32 page book, produced by the BDEC, explores the many aspects of the forest and its surrounds as well as some of the impacts threatening its future. More information here: A_Journey_into_the_Ludlow_Tuart_Forest

The BDEC annual general meeting will be held in October and this is a great opportunity to join this important community organisation and get involved in enhancing our unique natural environment.

Besides being a general volunteer for hands on planting and events other opportunities are available that provide the organisation with direction, momentum and day to day running. Some opportunities currently available are:

Centre Manager



 BDEC welcomes new members, public enquiries and the general public so why not drop in, get in touch or join up to make a difference, its FREE!








Volunteers Acknowledged at Awards



Busselton Dunsborough Volunteer Centre congratulates all recipients and nominees for this years awards WELL DONE!. We also thank ALL the fantastic volunteers for their efforts and generous giving to our community.

Read about it and view pictures here: https://www.busseltonmail.com.au/story/5418804/meet-your-volunteers-of-the-year-photos/

To celebrate the achievements and efforts of our local volunteers the Busselton Dunsborough Volunteer Centre in conjunction with the City of Busselton hosted the Volunteer of the Year recognition awards for Busselton and Dunsborough. These awards allow an opportunity for the community to show its appreciation of the many hours of devoted community work that volunteers contribute to the City. Volunteers contribute enormously to the health and welfare of our community and these awards will recognise and highlight outstanding achievements and service to the community by nominated individuals. Nominations were assessed by the Volunteer of the Year Awards Selection Committee consisting of prominent members of our City and winners were announced on Monday 21st May at the City of Busselton Civic Function Room. With nominations across five categories the judges had some difficult decisions to make and the winners were:

Harvey Norman Open Award: John Martin
Geographe Camping and Tackle World Seniors Award: John Morris
Apex Youth Award: Bianca Gervasi
Rotary Tourism & Events Award: Charmian Terry
Lions Club Volunteer with Less than Three Years Service Award: Robert Withington
There were also 4 highly commended certificates awarded to: Brian Slee, Danae Plowman, Innes Barker and Heather Carrol

The Volunteer of the Year Awards are generously supported by: City of Busselton; Volunteering WA, Lotteries West, Member for Vasse, Libby Mettam MLA; Member for Forrest, Adele Farina  MLC Member for South West Region, Nola Marino MP; Harvey Norman; Apex Australia Busselton Chapter; Rotary International Busselton Chapter; Lions Club Busselton, Geographe Camping and Tackle World.

Here is an in depth look at the work these fantastic people do in our community adapted from Mayor Cr Grant Henley's Speach

Volunteer with Less than 3 Years’ Service Category:

Highly Commended award goes to Danae Plowman.

 Recognising the need for a Friends of Windlemere Reserve group, Danae subsequently established and is leading the group.  This group was formed in close collaboration with the City of Busselton and Dunsborough Coast and Land Care (DCALC).  Windlemere Reserve, Dunsborough is a peaceful haven enjoyed by numerous locals and visitors daily.  It is classed as a Threatened Ecological Community and is currently under threat from dieback, invasive weeds, litter and foot traffic. Danae was concerned about the deterioration of the bushland and since establishing the Windlemere Reserve group, there are now 20 members who monitor the health and look to preserve the reserve’s unique qualities. Danae has been involved in the organising of activities such as the possum night stalk with Ecologists, possum box monitoring, reserve walk through and planning sessions, a Clean Up Australia Day event and weeding.

That’s a whole lot to cram into 14 months Danae. Congratulations on your Highly Commended award.


This year’s winner of Volunteer with Less Than 3 Years’ Service is Robert Withington

Moving to Busselton in March 2016, Robert wasted no time. Semi-retired, he joined the Busselton Lions Club in May 2016 and took up Vice Presidency in 2016/17, followed by the Treasurer’s role in 2017/18. Robert also took on a leadership role at the Busselton Lions Shed, organising and revamping the shed, restructuring and merchandising goods and administering and contributing to the Club’s Facebook page. The introduction of social media provided members and volunteers with readily available information and improved inclusivity. It has also enhanced the promotion of Lions projects and events. Robert has been heavily involved in the Membership Committee of Lions, believing ‘more hands, more service’. His involvement in projects such as the School Buddy Benches, Christmas Cakes and Christmas trees have raised much needed funds that help fund groups such as Lamp Inc., Royal Flying Doctors, hearing and eye institutes, Alzheimer’s Research, local disasters, children’s groups, families in need and people with disabilities… to name a few.

Your enthusiasm cannot be faulted Robert. Congatulations on winning this very deserving award.

Youth (Under 25) Category:

Our winner for the 2018 Youth Volunteer of the Year award is Bianca Gervasi.

In September 2017, Bianca applied for the inaugural Busselton Jetty Crew, a voluntary 12 month leadership program for 16 to 21 year olds. Over 100 applications were received for the exciting new program and Bianca was one of the successful 12 selected to participate.  The Jetty Crew program provides formal leadership training, dive qualifications, project and event management training and an opportunity to ensure that the Jetty is here for future generations to enjoy for another 153 years.  As a member of the Jetty Crew Bianca has consistently contributed to the coordination and planning of events such as:

• Youth Clean Up Australia Day;

• Twilight Jetty Fest;

• Festival of Busselton Sandcastle Competition;

• Super Blue Blood Moon –Bianca cooking enough sausages to raise over $650 for the Jetty Pile Rehabilitation Project.

Upon receiving her dive qualifications, Bianca participated in a pile rehabilitation dive. With over 1,600 piles under the Jetty, some damaged by wood borers, this ongoing project helps to regenerate new life on the piles. Bianca’s proactive approach and outstanding work ethic when undertaking projects and events has been recognised widely by her Busselton Jetty Crew. She is an inspiration and role model to other young people in the Busselton community, particularly her peers.

Bianca you should be proud of your committed effort and achievements. Congratulations!


Rotary Tourism and Events Category:

Our winner for the 2018 Tourism and Events Volunteer of the Year award is Charmian Terry

Charmian has been a voluntary member of Busselton Jetty Inc. since 2007, as well as a voluntary member of the Board since 2011 and Secretary of the Board since 2013. As Secretary of the Board, Charmian is responsible for preparing monthly agendas, minutes and recording of attendance at meetings. She performs this voluntary role with the highest integrity.  Charmian also currently sits on the Busselton Jetty Inc. People’s Sub Committee, which is responsible for developing strategies to increase members.  Charmian’s key achievements to date have been her involvement in the development and installation of the Bollard Trail Project. This trail is very popular with visitors and was undertaken with the Maritime Museum Association of Australia.  Charmian was also an integral member of the Jetty Art/Interpretation project group which was responsible for the installation of updated interpretation and artefacts along the Jetty, including the wind vane.  Charmian’s colleagues advised that her kind nature and bright personality shines through in all that she does and has proven to be a valuable member of the jetty team.  Her organisational skills, high level of efficiency and the pride taken in her work is commendable.

 Charmian congratulations on your award.


 Senior Category:

Nominees for the Senior Category are: • Brian Slee • Dave McKeating • Eunice Gould • John Morris • Thelma Charnstrom • Tony Smurthwaite

 A Highly Commended award goes to Brian Slee.

Brian has been committed to the Busselton community for quite some years. Even during his time of working with Council, Brian always went above and beyond his scope of works, involved in the restoration of the old jetty crane and rebuild of railway trolleys that were donated to the Busselton Jetty.  Brian has been actively involved in the City’s Settlement Art Project, Busselton Jetty and for the past 5 years the Busselton Historical Society. He has worked tirelessly to restore, improve, rebuilt, reshape and fundraise for many of the City’s historical assets.  Brian has only recently stepped down as President of the Busselton Historical Society – is that like retiring from retiring?

 Brian your dedication to our community is most deserving of this Highly Commended award. Well done!

The WINNER for the Senior Category is John Morris

 John has a long history of Volunteer work and, amongst other things, has been involved with the St Mary's Anglican Parish for the past 12 years.  He volunteers on average 50 hours per week, including weekends. 

John has held the positions of Church Warden and Parish Administrator over his 12 years of service.   He is also currently on the Board of Anglicare Emergency Relief in the Diocese (region) of Bunbury, which has responsibility for community emergency relief from Mandurah down to Esperance.   As the Parish contact, John has assisted a countless number of needy, disadvantaged families and individuals on a daily basis during his tenure as a volunteer.   He has been instrumental to many projects run by the Parish and while the list is extensive, to name a few:

• He oversees and manages the operations of St Mary's Op Shop in Busselton and oversees Cliffs Kitchen. The Op shop is an integral part of the Parish and Cliffs Kitchen provides up to 200 meals per week for the homeless and needy in Busselton.

 • He brings Christmas to many needy individuals and families, organising Christmas Hampers and the now well-known St Mary's Christmas Lunch that has run for the past 6 years.Father Christmas is on the list of John’s many talents!

 • Commuting to the Bunbury Food Bank at least 18 times per year to bring back supplies needed for the St Mary's Community Centre.

 • Project Manager for major renovations to the Church and Family Centre.

 • Coordinator for set-up at church services and functions.

 • On the Board of St Mary's Community Care Nurture Works — Buz

 In recent times John received The Bishop's Award for the Diocese of Bunbury for his outstanding service to the Anglican Church.  John’s other voluntary roles within the community include:

• Busselton Volunteer Marine Rescue Group;

• Busselton Tennis Club;

• He was past President of the Busselton Golf Club; and

• 4 years on the Board of the Housing Industry Association.

 John, your generosity, kind nature and willingness to help others is beyond measure.   The initiatives you have undertaken and the leadership skills you exude, all delivered with compassion, are qualities that can only be described as extraordinary.

 Congratulations on winning this Year’s Senior Award.


Open Category:

Nominees for the Open Category are: • Dawn McCarthy; • Heather Carroll; • Innes Barker; • John Martin; and • Vanessa Sabatini

 Our first Highly Commended award goes to Heather Carroll:

 Heather has been volunteering for many years, both within the Busselton and Dunsborough community. No challenge too great, nor too small. Heather has dedicated:

• 10 Years and is still currently with the Busselton Senior High School Board; • 15 Years with the Busselton Senior High School Band & P&C; and • 15 Years with the Dunsborough Primary School P & C and Canteen.

Raising four children who have since completed their K to year 12 education, Heather continues to provide valuable support to our school communities.  It is worth pointing out that in her honour, Dunsborough Primary School has named the canteen after Heather. 

Heather, we applaud your dedication to our community. Congratulations on your Highly Commended award.


Our second Highly Commended award goes to Innes Barker

Innes has become a very important member of some very important organisations within our community, including: • Geographe Community Landcare Nursery; • Cliff's Kitchen, St Mary's Parish; and • He has been a role model for Busselton Senior High School students; Jobs South West Training and Community Services; and Community Services Horticulture Trainees. 

With 8 years of volunteering across these organisations, Innes is best known for his patience and dedication when it comes to getting the job done.  Innes has been described as “unflappable in his dedication to any task he is set, only having to tell him the once what we want done and he gets on with it until he runs out of time or plants.” 

It is a pleasure to reward your enthusiasm Inness with this Highly Commended award. Well done!

The WINNER for the 2018 Open Volunteer of the Year is John Martin

John has been a volunteer with St John Ambulance Busselton for 27 years. His dedication has earnt him a Volunteer Service Medal and Two Bars to date. He was also recently presented with the Order of St John, which is awarded to volunteers in recognition of their significant contribution, over and above what is normally expected. Nominated by their peers, this ward is held in high regard.  John’s peers describe him “as a compassionate and positive person who inspires others to aspire to the level of commitment he has reached and is always prepared to give.”  I believe John has willingly sacrificed his time to help those in need over so many years, while overcoming many personal challenges along the way.  His exactitude, dedication and perseverance never ceases to amaze those around him.   John, congratulations for winning this very deserving award.

Sun Smart Busselton Festival of Triathlon - 2019


Be part of the 2019 SunSmart Busselton Festival of Triathlon in a volunteer capacity.

The 2019 SunSmart Busselton Festival of Triathlon, on from 3rd May – 5th May, is the premier triathlon event in WA and the culmination of the WA triathlon season. It is hosted by Triathlon WA, the state sporting body representing Triathlon in WA. As a small, not for profit organisation, volunteer support is vital and it has been the support of our fantastic volunteers that has made the event the success that it is.

There are lots of ways you can be part of the action as part of our volunteer family. From Course Marshall to Registration Assistant, Aid Station to Finish Line Volunteers, we need your help. More than 400 volunteers are required to join our volunteer family.

  • People and groups required from Friday 3rd May – Sunday 5th May 2019
  • Lots of roles to choose from
  • Half-day shifts or longer shifts available
  • Free volunteer uniform including a t-shirt and hat
  • Complimentary voucher for the scrumptious food vans
  • Opportunity to learn new skills, meet new people and have a great experience
  • Be in the thick of all the action and soak in the atmosphere of this favourite triathlon festival

If you or anyone you know may be interested, registration is NOW OPEN and more information can be found by clicking here Volunteer Information






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Volunteer Winners are Grinners!

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Award-winners, sponsors and organisers demonstrating the theme for this year's National Volunteer Week: "Give Happy, Live Happy." Picture: Taelor Pelusey


Busselton and Dunsborough’s tireless volunteers were cast into the spotlight on Monday night at the annual Volunteer of the Year recognition Awards.

In his role as MC, Mayor Grant Henley announced Connor Oliver — a training officer, patrol captain and inflatable rescue boat crewman with the Busselton Surf Lifesaving Club — the youth award winner.

The club had another winner in the open category with Helen Rabjones, who has served as chief administrator for more than a decade, among other roles.

Cr Henley praised the club’s work, making specific mention of a public safety decision to cancel the swim leg of a triathlon at the weekend after a shark sighting.

“I think that was in the highest echelon of volunteers performing in their duties and I commend both the surf lifesavers and the volunteer marine rescue guys who were there,” he said.

Ms Rabjones was also mentioned in the tourism and events category.

However, the award went to Doreen Bailie, who has been Jetty Host co-ordinator since 2011 and volunteers for organisations, events and during cruise ship visits.

Cr Henley said the cruise ship volunteers helped the City take out first place in the best local initiative category at the 2016 Annual Cruising Industry Awards.

“This success can be attributed to the many volunteers who provide a vibrant and friendly welcome to cruise ship passengers,” he said.

Des Austin — a bushfire brigade volunteer of more than four decades, and Busselton SES deputy local manager since 2013 — was commended in the seniors category, and the overall award went to Margaret Tickle.

The mayor jokingly pulled out a seat for Ms Tickle before reading out a lengthy list of volunteer activities with clubs, events, churches and education groups.

Cr Henley described volunteers as the backbone of the community.

“Sometimes volunteer work is challenging but our community always seems to be up for this challenge and that’s thanks to the efforts of people such as your selves,” he said.

The awards were hosted by the City of Busselton and Busselton-Dunsborough Volunteer Centre, with support from Volunteering WA and Lotterieswest.

All the winners:

Apex Youth (under-25) Award

Winner: Connor Oliver

Rotary Tourism & Events Award

Winner: Doreen Bailee

Special Mention: Teresa Pool, Paul Davis, Yvonne Avery, Helen Rabjones

Harvey Norman Open Award

Winner: Helen Rabjones

Geographe Camping and Tackle World Seniors Award

Winner: Margaret Tickle

Highly Commended: Des Austin

Special Mention: Isobel Gale, Trevor Hemmett, Dawn Taylor, Marion Scott, Elsie Froome, Peter Jager, Malcom Jennings

Caring Support for Family & Parents

Red Cross operates the Family and Practical support programs throughout the Southwest. The purpose of the Service is to provide caring and practical assistance to families with babies and young children who are facing extra challenges in adjusting to their parenting role. It is an early intervention service that offers respite and support to multiple birth families, mothers experiencing or at risk of postnatal depression or perinatal mental health problems and social isolation.fp

Family support has been supporting families since 1993 and is a unique service that Red Cross offers only in Western Australia. Since its inception, over 3,000 families have been assisted by creating a supportive environment and helping to minimise many of the daily stresses experienced by families with babies. We support families in Busselton, Dunsborough, Margaret River and Augusta.

Since 2008 Practical Support program has been supporting families by having volunteers visit the family home weekly and work alongside the mother assisting in domestic duties such as light housework, shopping and basic childcare e.g. feeding, settling babies, and preparing meals for children. The volunteer can also help with linking in with community and local supports and enhancing social networks. This Program is available in the Busselton area.


Volunteers provide approximately 4 hours per week of in-home respite per family and may work with the same family for up to 6 months in the case of a multiple birth. Hands-on support - child related activities, feeding, preparing meals for children, settling babies. Role modelling - volunteers encourage positive interaction between parents and children (play, talking, and discipline) to develop a child's social and cognitive development.
Emotional support - ‘being there' for the mother, the willingness to listen without being judgemental or giving advice.
Social support - supporting families in developing social networks and linking to community resources.
For more information on this volunteer opportunity or other exciting roles contact us at the

Busselton Dunsborough Volunteer Centre

Suite 5B - Ground Floor
21 Cammilleri Street
Box 11, CRC, 21 Cammilleri
Busselton WA 6280
Ph/Fax: 08 - 97542047
email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Web:  www.bdvolunteers.org.au
Facebook: www.facebook.com/BusseltonDunsboroughVolunteer Centre

 Open Monday and Tuesday 8.00am to 4pm
& Wednesday 10am to 2pm


Book a SKYPE Call!

Busselton Dunsborough Volunteer Centre is now on SKYPE.

To book a call you will need to send us an email with your SKYPE name.

Our SKYPE name is Volunteer.Coordinator2

We will then request you join us as a friend and arrange a time to call you to discuss your volunteering enquiries and requirements.

Please send email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

manWant to place an event on our calendar? - Contact us at: volunteers@westnet.com.au - Phone: 9754 2047

Environment Centre
Volunteering Wa