Leeuwin veteran nominated for state-wide volunteering award

Dedicated Leeuwin volunteer Peter Graham has been nominated for the People’s Choice ‘Spirit of Volunteering’ Award as part of the 2019 WA Volunteer of the Year Awards.

The ‘Spirit of Volunteering’ Award recognises the unsung heroes who through their volunteering have enhanced the lives of others and the community.

Peter joined Leeuwin Ocean Adventure as a 66-year old in 2008. Since then, he has completed an impressive 100 voyages and held the position of volunteer Watch Leader since 2009. At 77, Peter continues to amaze staff, volunteers and trainees alike, all of whom decades younger, with his willingness to climb to the highest points in STS Leeuwin’s rig, his agility around the ship and his extraordinary capacity to motivate and lead his watch groups.

Peter’s technical skill on board STS Leeuwin II is incredible, but it is his capacity to give his time and encouragement to the young sailing trainees on board that sets him apart. Peter’s patience, calmness, empathy and ability to draw even the most reticent out of their shells to ensure each voyage trainee gains the absolute most from their sail training experience has been demonstrated time and again.

Voyages are both mentally and physically demanding for voyage trainees and volunteer crew. It is critical to have emotional support to be able to succeed on board a Leeuwin voyage – this is support that Peter has consistently provided to young trainees.

Whether it’s climbing to the top of the main mast, soaring 33 metres from the main deck or volunteering to move to the outer most point of the highest yard, balancing over the ocean to haul up and secure the sail, Peter has been right alongside trainee after trainee. When it becomes too hard, Peter is there to support and encourage in a mentoring capacity.

Peter builds strength in the other volunteers through training and mentorship, imparting the wisdom that comes with years of experience and has a genuine commitment to teaching and developing youth. His volunteering efforts have a significant impact on the development and lives of young people and we are so grateful for his selfless and ongoing commitment to Leeuwin Ocean Adventure Foundation.

Thank you Peter and best of luck – you are so deserving of recognition for what you do!

To vote for Peter in the People’s Choice ‘Spirit of Volunteering’ Award, click the link below: