Eurobodalla's inaugural Local Hero is a very modest man.
David Oliphant is reluctant to speak about all the wonderful work he has done in the community since coming to Tilba in 2000.
He is much more comfortable talking about other people's contributions and giving the credit to others.
Mr Oliphant received the Local Hero Award at the Mayor's Ball on Friday, November 17.
Eurobodalla Shire Mayor Mathew Hatcher initiated the new event to celebrate volunteers and volunteering across the shire.
The proceeds of this year's charity dinner went to Monty's Place for a new industrial-grade oven.
By coincidence, Mr Oliphant got Monty's Place off the ground.
He went to Bega to meet Ross Williams, founder of Ricky's Place which provides a weekly community lunch.
"I particularly liked it because it was more like a cafe and people could donate money if they wanted.
"I thought that was a lovely model so I called for a public meeting and to my surprise 80 people turned up," Mr Oliphant said.
"Clearly people could see it was a worthwhile contribution, not just for the food but to meet each other."
Monty's Place has been putting on the community lunch without fail, even during COVID, for 10 years.
Mr Oliphant said the credit went to Mr Williams for his vision and to people like Monty Place committee chair Di White and her lovely band of volunteers for making it so successful.
Mr Oliphant is an ordained Anglican minister who also served as a minister of the Uniting Church.
Another valuable initiative he was instrumental in was Spiritual Care for Life.
For 20 years Mr Oliphant, his wife Angela and Sister Helen Kearins ran training for chaplains and pastoral carers.
"We trained and oversaw little groups of pastoral carers in hospitals and aged-care facilities."
Mr Oliphant is retired now but continues to put his hand up to help his community.
He is a member of the Gulaga Reconciliation Group which formed in 2017.
The Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal volunteers come together to create opportunities for cross-cultural understanding.
Mr Oliphants also belongs to the Tilba District History and Culture working group, the Elmgrove Sanctuary Trust and the Tilba Open Sanctuary Trust, to name a few.
"It is all a combined effort," Mr Oliphant said.
"With Monty's Place I just happened to be kicking the wall at one point but there have been lots of others kicking the ball since then."
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