Case Study:
The Alcoa Foundation Outstanding Community Worker Award
 
In the community sector, people work because they're committed to a vision – they gain great satisfaction in doing the work that they love, for causes they believe will make the world a better place.
 
In 2007 the Alcoa Foundation, in partnership with Our Community, introduced the first award in Australia to recognise the contribution made by the people working for community groups.
 
The Alcoa Foundation Outstanding Community Worker Award aims to recognise the community sector worker who best exemplifies the sector's ideals of dedication, excellence, and service.
 
Specifically the award is open to all community sector employees - the people who get paid for their work - but who aren't in it for the money.
 
The inaugural winner and 2007 Alcoa Foundation Outstanding Community Worker Award recipient was Maureen Nicholls Goldfields Child Care Centre Coordinator.
 
Maureen was described by the Centre Director as "the most irreplaceable member of our team".
 
The award provided Maureen with $5000 to be spent on her own choice of professional capacity-building; in the form that she thinks will best fit her for her role as coordinator at the Goldfields Child Care Centre.
 
The money can be spent on education and training, attending relevant conferences (in Australia or overseas), paying for relevant books or subscriptions - whatever is needed to take Maureen to the next level of excellence.
 
The Alcoa Foundation and Our Community congratulate Maureen and hope the Award goes some way to recognising her outstanding contribution to the community.