Thank you for voting for your Westfield Local Hero

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Thank you for voting for your Westfield Local Hero

We congratulate all of our finalists and recognise the important contribution they make to the local community. The successful Westfield Local Heroes will be announced on 27 October.

Westfield Local Heroes is a community recognition and grants program, connecting and enriching local communities.

Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the outcome of the public vote determining the three successful 2020 nominees for every Westfield centre. Each of the affiliated organisations of the successful heroes will be awarded a $10,000 grant to support their work to thrive. Westfield will award 126 grants across Australia and New Zealand – totalling $1.26 million.


Your finalists for Westfield Albany are:

Carol Conte

Blind Low Vision NZ
Dynamic. Compassionate. Committed

Carol Conte has volunteered for Blind Low Vision NZ for 29 years. For 25 years, she diligently visited the same man to read to him. Carol has now started a Coffee Group for Blind Low Vision NZ and arranges monthly outings. She is always looking for more ways to help and has started another group for Browns Bay. She also started a local walking group in Milford.

Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation. If Carol is successful, Blind Low Vision NZ will be able to reduce isolation by setting up more Coffee Clubs and arranging more outings for people with low vision.


Holly Simpson

Youthline Auckland Charitable Trust
Resilient. Empathetic. Compassionate

As a teenage mum, Holly Simpson found herself feeling stuck and unsure around her purpose as she navigated this new chapter of her life. This changed suddenly, after receiving a call from Youthline offering her support, Youthline is an organisation that supports young people and empowers them to reach their full potential. After studying, she started working for Youthline and feels privileged to use her experience to help other young people and share her story to inspire hope.

Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation. If Holly is successful, Youthline will use its grant to pay for triaging staff at its helpline services.


Jane Hunter

North Harbour Community Patrol
Tireless. Driven. Connected

For years Jane Hunter has been the heart of the North Harbour Community Patrol, a group of volunteers who act as the eyes and ears for the police and help keep the community safe. Now, aged 72, she continues to put in more than her share of hours on patrol and other duties.

Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation. If Jane is successful, the North Harbour Community Patrol will use the grant to purchase a patrol vehicle.


Louise Burnie-Allnutt

Foster Hope Charitable Trust
Thoughtful. Committed. Caring

Louise Burnie-Allnutt brings joy and comfort to children entering foster care each year. She founded the Foster Hope Charitable Trust to provide children with a backpack full of essentials that give a little bit of light and excitement at an extremely traumatic time. Louise makes sure they have items such as underwear, a soft toy, a book and, in some cases, a quilt to help ease the transition into care. "Something as simple as a backpack, can have a profound impact on a child when they find out that it's been made for them by a complete stranger," Louise says.

Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation. If Louise is successful, the Foster Hope Charitable Trust will use its grant to buy backpacks.


Makerita Siaosi

A Girl Called Hope
Empowering. Passionate. Dedicated

Armed with specialist post-graduate studies in Family Therapy, a hearty laugh and a steadfast belief in people's potential, Makerita Siaosi is the ideal person to help young women through times of crisis. Makerita is the Programme Manager at A Girl Called Hope and offers the residents in her care a safe place that respects each person as an individual and helps them make wise choices. A reward for Makerita is to see past clients enjoying life. "Seeing changed lives and people living with purpose helps me know I'm doing my bit for our community and gives me my sense of purpose," Makerita says.

Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation. If Makerita is successful, A Girl Called Hope will invest its grant in training and professional development of staff.


Tracey Swanberg

North Shore Women's Centre
Committed. Changemaker. Inspiring

Tracey Swanberg has bounced back from a difficult start by qualifying as a social worker and going on to become the CEO of refuge that keeps innumerable women and children safe. "Experiences in early in life have helped shape my adulthood and my studies and commitment to working with women and children who deal with a plethora of issues," says Tracey. She volunteered at the North Shore Women's Centre for 10 years before taking on the CEO role. "I have spent my entire adult working life as a social worker and doing volunteer work with women and children," says Tracey.

Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation. If Tracey is successful, North Shore Women's Centre will use its grant to fund free counselling and legal support as well koha (donations) for women who most need it.


If you need support, please phone Lifeline: 13 11 14

Recognising all our 2020 nominees

View all of the nominees and their organisations