CHANGING LIVES: Bobbi and Joshua Dingle were among 33 Lockyer Valley residents celebrated for their volunteer work at the Wright Community Awards 2019.
CHANGING LIVES: Bobbi and Joshua Dingle were among 33 Lockyer Valley residents celebrated for their volunteer work at the Wright Community Awards 2019. Ebony Graveur

How a mother-son duo are changing the lives of disabled kids

For mother-son duo Bobbi and Josh Dingle, volunteering is just a part of life.

The Regency Downs pair became involved in Lockyer Valley Riding for Disabled when Josh signed up six years ago as a rider.

On Tuesday, they were both recognised by their local MP for their involvement in a club that 'aims to make horse riding a possibility for people with a disability'.

Noticing the impact the club had on Josh, Mrs Dingle began volunteering and Joshua began volunteering, too.

"I only did it because Josh was there but I have my own disabilities, too,” Mrs Dingle said.

"And I use it as my time... otherwise I'd just be sitting at home. I use it as an out.”

Josh's girlfriend Claire Vickerman became involved in the club three years ago.

She said she had noticed a huge change not only in other club members but in herself.

"It's really good to be able to bond with people, especially if you're not comfortable around people,” Claire said.

She said she had seen it change people's lives.

"It definitely does, you can see it,” she said.

"When people come at first you can see they're kind of shy but you talk to them and you see them a month later and they're a different person.”

Mrs Dingle said the club was welcoming to those of any age.

"Anyone with a disability or mental health challenges can come down and have a one hour riding session,” Mrs Dingle said.

"They can relax, strengthen their bodies and it also gives an outlet for the parents who live with these people every day.”

As for who nominated the duo, they both looked to each other.

"I thought it was him and he thought it was me but we really have no idea,” Mrs Dingle said.

"But the information they had on me was recent so (the nomination) had to be recent.”

Mrs Dingle received her five years of service badge from Riding for Disabled two months ago.

"If you're looking for something to do on weekends, don't think you can't do it,” she said.

"If you think you don't have the experience, it's not hard and we will teach you.”

More than 30 volunteers from the Lockyer Valley region were nominated for recognition at the 2019 Wright Community Awards.
More than 30 volunteers from the Lockyer Valley region were nominated for recognition at the 2019 Wright Community Awards. Contributed

MP thanks volunteers for doing what 'could not afford to do'

VOLUNTEERS who 'do it because they're frustrated nobody else will do it as well as they can' were thanked by Federal MP Scott Buchholz.

More than 30 Lockyer Valley volunteers were recognised yesterday at the 2019 Wright Community Awards.

The event is in its third year and is split into three ceremonies for three local government areas in the Wright electorate.

Prior to announcing the recipients, Member for Wright Scott Buchholz said the region 'punched above its weight'.

He said he established the awards to thank volunteers across the community for the contributions they made through volunteering.

"Those who make a contribution... are not motivated to do it for the accolade that comes their way,” Mr Buchholz said.

"They don't do it for the praise and they definitely don't do it for the money; they do it to make their community a better place.”

He said volunteers were able to do for the economy what three levels of government could not.

"From an economic perspective... If local government, state government and federal government were to be paying those volunteers (nationally) it would cost around $13.4 billion,” he said.

"Government could not afford it... and government would not do it as efficiently as you do - we just can't deliver that level of service with the passion and emotion because we would have rules and regulations that would go over the top of it.”

Award recipients in the Lockyer Valley region include:

Joshua Dingle, Carolyn Joy Becker, Gary John Young JP, David Klinge, Russell Berlin, Gordon Roberts, Stephen Price, Kerri MacMahon, John Bushell, Rodney Gee, Jasmine Hunn, Margaret Philp, Kerry Battersby, Julie Dorrington, Donna Kelleher, Margaret Cole, Meachelle Roelofs, Vince Price, Neil Scott, Regina Samykanu-Vuthapanich, Neil Cole, Robert Fowke, Bobbi Dingle, Ivy O'Brien, Euan McDonald, Jill-Maree Ilka, Ann Bichel, Jim and Doreen Pitman, Bernadette Gee, Marlayna Bryan, Tracey Lewis, and Anita Bakes.


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