SALUTE: Jennnifer Waldron, president of the Bundaberg & District Ex-Servicewomen’s Association, at the announcement of the A Salute to Servicewomen portrait exhibition to be held in Bundaberg next year.
SALUTE: Jennnifer Waldron, president of the Bundaberg & District Ex-Servicewomen’s Association, at the announcement of the A Salute to Servicewomen portrait exhibition to be held in Bundaberg next year. Contributed

Exhibition honours women in forces

BUNDABERG’S Elements Art group is planning a new portrait exhibition that honours the women living in our region who have voluntarily served in Australian and Allied Defence Forces for more than 100 years.

The “A Salute to Servicewomen” exhibition will be delivered in partnership with the Bundaberg & District Ex Servicewomen’s Association in July 2017. Now the call is being put out to former and current servicewomen across the region to step forward so their portrait can be added to the exhibition.

“The exhibition will be held in July 2017, so we have a year to gather the portraits that will make this a very special event,” said Jacky Poulter of Elements Art.

“It will be held in an historic Hangar at Bundaberg Regional Airport and the intention is to invite the whole community to come and find out more about the outstanding contribution of our region’s servicewomen.

“This exhibition is all about honouring the service of women from the Bundaberg region for over 100 years, commemorating the Anzac Centenary and raising the awareness of women veterans within the community. It will showcase the former and current servicewomen living in our region today.”

Elements Art comprises four local artists who have delivered joint exhibitions since 2009. It includes Jacky Poulter and Janette Young, who both work in acrylics, oils and pastels, art photographer Wayne Poulter and sculptor Sergio Martinho.

In 2015, Elements Art delivered the successful “1 in 100” exhibition recognising and celebrating the servicemen and women in Bundaberg region as part of the Anzac celebrations. For that event, in January 2016 Elements Art was named the winner of the Creative Spirit category of the 2016 Australia Day Spirit Awards.

Association president Jennifer Waldron said: “In July 1917 the first bravery medals for courage under fire were awarded to Australian women – nurses serving on the Western Front during the First World War and this exhibition of current women veterans honours the 100th anniversary of their bravery.”

“The timing of the exhibition will mark 100 years since four Australian Army nurses – Sisters Alice Ross King, Clare Deacon, Dorothy Cawood and Queenslander, Staff Nurse Mary Jane Derrer - were awarded Military Medals for ‘courage under fire’.

“They rescued patients from burning tents during heavy shelling of the 2nd Australian Casualty Clearing Station on the July 21, 2017 on the Western Front during the First World War. It was the first time Australian servicewomen were awarded medals for bravery while under fire from the enemy.”

“A Salute to Servicewomen” also will mark the 50th anniversary of the Bundaberg & District Ex Servicewomen’s Association.

The event will showcase Second World War servicewomen who founded the association in 1967, and include veterans from recent conflicts in the Middle East and all the decades in between.

“Elements Art always has a strong sense of community driving our events, this event is important to us because our servicewomen have played such a vital role over the past 100 years, and ongoing. It is only fitting that this be acknowledged and applauded right across our community,” Mrs Young said.

“We are proud to be working with the

Bundaberg & District Ex-Servicewomen’s Association to deliver this portrait exhibition. We would urge all current and former servicewomen to be part of this important commemorative event. Just contact the association for details. All portrait subjects will be required to be a member of the association.”

Bundaberg Aero Club is planning to hold an open day event on July 8 and 9 next year to coincide with the exhibition.

“This is about the community coming together to deliver events that showcase our strengths, our people and build our organisations,” said Mrs Young.

How you can get involved in the “A Salute to Servicewomen” exhibition:

Contact the Bundaberg & District Ex Servicewomen’s Association.

Contact: Association president Jennifer Waldron on 41574621 or secretary Leone Wilson on 41594134.

E-mail: bundy.eswa@gmail.com

Find out more about the Association at: http://exservicewomen.org



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