The fifth annual Coral McLean Awards breakfast, held on 8 June 2017 was an incredible celebration of all the women who do so much to build up and help others in our community. 

Among the awards presented at the Breakfast was the Chifley Woman of the Year which was awarded to Firdousi Obeidullah, Coordinator of House of Sakinah Women Support Centre at Mt Druitt.

Volunteering with Flying Doctors service when she first got married to a doctor and stationed at Broken Hill, she has continued to support and help individuals and families.

Firdousi was among the first Muslim women to get access to the detention centre in Villawood. There she helped refugee families, giving simple things like a phone card and food to later helping these families by providing them with furniture and other necessities when they were placed within the community.

When she was approached to volunteer her services for the Women Support Centre project, she willingly agreed, and has been assisting women who come to the centre running from domestic violence or merely need some advice and referrals.

Journalist and presenter Tracey Spicer, an out-spoken advocate for women known for her passion for social justice and equality, handed out the awards for 2017.

All proceeds raised from the breakfast went to a $4000 contribution to help the Mount Druitt Ethnic Communities Agency “Girl SKILZ” program, which targets young women aged 14-16 who are experiencing family breakdown or are at risk of being engaged in the juvenile justice system.

The 2017 Coral McLean Award, the namesake of the special Breakfast, went to Leonie Day who has been more than just a teacher and assistant principal at Marayong Public School. For almost 40 years, she’s been a friend and a shoulder to lean on for many students and families, and has provided meals and access to support services for many in the school community.

Lauren Barrientos was awarded Chifley Young Woman of the Year, alongside Lynette Cameron for the MP Recognition Award and Carlene Allen for the Judges Recognition Award.