SOMETHING TO SMILE ABOUT: Passionate environmentalist Mick Callan received the Jo Ross Memorial Award on Australia Day after his years of dedication to preserving and improving the local environment. Photo: PHIL BLATCHTHE environment is not separate from people.
That was the message Jo Ross Memorial Award recipient Mick Callan wanted to get across on Australia Day as he collected his honour.
During the awards ceremony in Machattie Park, Greening Bathurst’s Ashley Bland announced Mr Callan as the recipient of the prestigious award.
A deserving recipient, Mr Callan has helped to protect and improve the local environment through his roles with Bathurst Regional Council andthe Central West Councils Environment andWaterways Alliance.
Mr Bland said he went “above and beyond” these roles, something that made him as worthy as previous recipients of the Jo Ross award.
“To be awarded an environmental award from the very people that are out there protecting our environment around this city every day is very humbling and I’m very proud,” Mr Callan said.
When talking about the importance of the environment, Mr Callan noted that its survival was vital to the survival of humanity.
“When I meet people around the place and I talkabout the sort of work I do, they say “you’re a bit of a greenie then” and it always sort of has this negative connotation,” he said.
“I’m never really sure how to respond, but when I think about it, the environment isn’t separate from people. We rely wholly on the environment for our existence, for our food, for our water and for the clean air we breath. So without the environment, we don’t exist.”
Mr Callan went on to say that Australian researchers are finding that people in located within six minutes ofgreen spaces are more likely to be happier, healthy people.
“If you live beyond that six-minute zone …the evidence is that you are more likely to be susceptible to mental health issues, such as obesity and depression,” he said.
“So we can’t separate ourselves from the environment; we very much rely on it.”
Mr Callan joins a long list of recipients of the Jo Ross award, including Tracey Carpenter, Bill Joshand the Boundary Road Reserve Landcare Group.
The award was introduced following the death of Jo Ross in 2006 and sale of her art bequeathed to Greening Bathurst.
It serves as a way ofrecognisingindividuals and groups that have worked hard to improve the local environment, something Ms Ross did herself.
Award recipient Mick CallanThis story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.