Quota's night of nights for women

ELISE Crofts is the Quota Coffs Harbour Woman of the Year.

Elise has been a volunteer Guiding leader, trainer and administrator for more than three decades.

This busy working mother and grandmother has been the nurse unit manager at the Coffs Harbour Day Surgery since it was opened 20 years ago, specialising in eye surgery.

She became involved in nursing volunteering overseas with Marine Reach, travelling to Fiji on the ship the Island Mercy in 2002.

Shortly afterwards she became involved with the East Timor Eye Program run by the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons,

Since then she has been to Timor six times to work with the surgeons and will travel to the island again at the end of this month.

Since 2006 Elise has been helping her mother, Joan Howlett, to collect toys and gifts from Target's giving Christmas tree for distribution to disadvantaged families through Uniting Care Burnside in Coffs Harbour, sorting up to 500 toys and gifts each year.

Always interested in the plight of the homeless, Elise took a group of brownies, guides and other leaders to join the ‘sleep out under the stars' at Taronga Zoo and joined the Night Rider van for 12 months, handing out hot soup and food to the homeless in the Coffs Coast community.

She is also a member of the Uniting Church Council.

Currently the district leader for Coffs Harbour Guides, she has just added another string to her bow by being appointed the division development consultant.

The announcement of her award, at the Quota Friendship Night, was greeted by the singing of Bravo from the Guiding table at the event.

The night also saw certificates presented to 12 women of achievement and seven young woman of achievement, three of them sisters.

The woman of achievement named were Roma Anderson, nominated by Regional Cancer Services; Gale Andrews, Jillian Hyslop, Robyn Salter, Betty Wright and Wilma Henriksen, nominated by Look Good Feel Better; Irene Hartsuyker and Ann Rehwinkel, nominated by Coffs Harbour Red Cross; Franca Higgins and Stacey Spencer, nominated by Uniting Care Burnside Family Support Service; Joan Palmer, nominated by The Neighbourhood House Inc.; and Kerry Wallis nominated by the Women's Refuge.

The Young Women of Achievement were Bryana Cuthbert, Kiarah Cuthbert and Kirstin Cuthbert, nominated by Coffs Harbour Red Cross; Rachel Hall, nominated by Dragons Abreast Australia; Jemima Kenny, nominated by Uniting Care Burnside Family Support Service; Shiree Preo, nominated by the Coffs Coast Deaf Community; and Jessi Lee Stewart nominated by the Coffs Girl Guide Association.

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