Victorians are being encouraged to recognise the contributions made to our community by seniors and organisations by nominating people for the Victorian Senior of the Year.

Nominations for the Victorian Senior of the Year Awards open today. It highlights the role of seniors who inspire others as mentors, educators, role models, leaders, or behind the scenes workers.

Categories include the Premier’s Award for Victorian Senior of the Year, the Promotion of Multiculturalism Award, the Healthy and Active Living Award, the Veteran Community Award and the Council on the Ageing Victoria Senior Achiever Awards.

The Age-Friendly Victoria Award recognises an organisation or a business that creates age-friendly communities, promotes active ageing, or improves quality of life for older Victorians.

Gwen Smith from Echuca was named 2016 Victorian Senior of the Year, thanks to her continued involvement with community groups and in adult education for over 30 years. She is President of the Echuca Neighbourhood House, is actively involved in Murrumbeena Aboriginal Education Group, Echuca RSL, and is a judge for Town Crier competitions across the state.

Nominations for the awards open today, and will close on Friday, 23 June.

Winners will be announced at a ceremony at Government House in October as part of the 35th Victorian Seniors Festival.

More information, profiles of previous award recipients and nomination forms can be found at

Quotes attributable to Minister for Housing, Disability and Ageing Martin Foley

 “Senior Victorians make such a valuable contribution to our state so it’s important they are celebrated.”

“The Victorian Senior of the Year Awards are a great way to recognise seniors and organisations who contribute to our community for their whole lives.”

“Nominees could be a volunteer in your organisation, a friend, neighbour or family member, or just someone you see doing good work around your community.”