Festival ambassadors Rev Dorothy McRae-McMahon, Robina Beard OAM, Kumar Pereira, and Aunty Sandra-Lee having fun in the NSW Seniors Festival kitchen.
Festival ambassadors Rev Dorothy McRae-McMahon, Robina Beard OAM, Kumar Pereira, and Aunty Sandra-Lee having fun in the NSW Seniors Festival kitchen. NSW Seniors Festival

NSW Seniors Festival: Meet the ambassadors

AN ECLECTIC group of five ambassadors are encouraging all NSW seniors to do more together in March during the NSW Seniors Festival, March 3 to 12.

Robina Beard OAM, Rev Dorothy McRae-McMahon, Kumar Pereira, Graham Ross and Aunty Sandra-Lee are an inspiring group of festival ambassadors who have been drawn from all sections of the community.

Each of them share with us what they are looking forward to most in their lives.


Robina Beard OAM.
Robina Beard OAM. NSW Seniors Festival

Robina Beard OAM - https://youtu.be/1kkZSNxU9fE

Ms Beard was Madge the manicurist in the Palmolive dish-washing liquid television commercial of the seventies.

"What I'm looking forward to is being able to teach lots of people in my exercise classes and my tap dancing class, to have a great joy of life, to love dancing, and to get to know their bodies and keep looking after them."


Rev Dorothy McRae-McMahon.
Rev Dorothy McRae-McMahon. NSW Seniors Festival

Rev Dorothy McRae-McMahon - https://youtu.be/GMYWV4i_VB0

Dorothy has worked in international aid and community development.

In 1997, she came out as a lesbian and led a successful campaign to have homosexual ministers accepted in the Uniting Church.

"The thing I look forward to most in my life is working with volunteers, especially for the free local paper which we produce, the South Sydney Herald for the inner city of Sydney."


Kumar Pereira.
Kumar Pereira. NSW Seniors Festival

Kumar Pereira - https://youtu.be/jH0S_dQrfBI

Kumar became a household name in Australia in 2011 thanks to Masterchef.

He volunteers, teaching the disadvantaged and seniors with disability, to prepare nutritious low-cost meals.

"I am looking forward to teaching even more people, particularly the seniors, to do the same."


Graham Ross.
Graham Ross. NSW Seniors Festival

Graham Ross VMM - https://youtu.be/Z2g5hU07Xe8

Graham has been sharing his tips and passion for gardening for 50 years.

He started the Garden Clinic radio show on 2GB and then joined the television series Better Homes and Gardens in 1995.

"I am looking forward to growing something I can eat, and even better, share."


Aunty Sandra-Lee.
Aunty Sandra-Lee. NSW Seniors Festival

Aunty Sandra Lee - https://youtu.be/32iGRZdV96U

Aunty Sandra is a Boorooberrongal, Darug Elder and Traditional Owner who was born in Blacktown and is passionate about preserving the heritage and culture of the Darug people for all Australians to share.

"My people have been here for thousands of years.

"What I would like to do next year is to work with the aboriginal people in Blacktown, Mt Druitt, and help them to trace their families back as far as they can go."

The ambassadors as tasked with encouraging seniors to participate in the festival.

Festival spokesperson Lee Huuskes said, "They will do this primarily through promoting the campaign's key messages and its values through the media, and sharing their skills, experiences, stories and tips".

He expects festival visitors will get the chance to enjoy the company of the ambassadors at a number of events.

The 59th NSW Seniors Festival is on from March 3 to 12.

Across the state there will be a range of art, music, entertainment, recreation, sport and health events that encompass this year's themes of staying connected, contributing to the community, living active and healthy lives, getting involved in multicultural, intergeneration and lifestyle events and continuing to learn.

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