News

Diary triumphs again

WARRANDYTE Diary has been named Newspaper of the Year for the second year in a row at the Community Newspaper Association Victoria (CNAV) annual conference and awards night on the weekend.

Diary editor Scott Podmore and one of our 45-year-old newspaper’s founding fathers Jock Macneish were there to enjoy the spoils at the Foothills Conference Centre in Mooroolbark after early conducting “community engagement” workshops for other community newspaper representatives from throughout the state.

“It’s a fantastic achievement for our Warrandyte community in particular,” Diary editor Scott said. “A community newspaper is only as strong as its community’s spirit and their willingness to come together to ensure the voice is strong in its local newspaper. We have so many great people who contribute whether they be volunteers, cadets, creatives, experienced writers and photographers or even those who put their hand up to deliver bundles of the paper to a pick-up point.”

“The Diary and the Warrandyte community are a force to be reckoned with. We know how lucky we are but it’s nice to be recognised like this. It’s a pat on the back for our people.”

From the nine CNAV awards the Diary featured in six, winning three and being a finalist (top 3) in three others, the same result as last year. As well as winning Newspaper of the Year, the Diary won for Best Layout and Design and Best Sports Coverage.

To win Best Sports Coverage is a real feather in the cap of our new sports editor Mikey Di Petta,” Scott said. “He’s a terrific kid doing a sports journalism course at university and he’s taken the reins of sport with confidence and enthusiasm. You only need look at our recent footy, tennis and netball coverage with all the flags they won. Well the Diary just bagged three flags tonight, too.

“As for the Best Layout & Design award – well that’s one we tuck away in our hearts, because that ackowledges the fantastic work of our dear little Rachel Schroeder who passed away earlier this year and also the equally as brilliant work of our new designer Hayley Saretta.”

The three finalists categories we featured in included: Best News Feature Story (Lara McKinley’s excellent coverage of eating local), Best Photograph (Bill Hudson-McAuley’s amazing ANZAC Day photograph of Ruben Harris-Allen), and Best Article By A Person 18 Years Or Younger (work experience local Sydney Lang’s first ever published story about 10 top things to do for winter was an absolute ripper!).

To add credibility to the Diary’s achievements, nine separate experienced newspaper industry judges were given the task of judging each of the nine CNAV awards. Their comments were:

 

Best Design and Layout – winner, Warrandyte Diary

Many large publishing companies would be proud of the standard achieved by the Warrandyte Diary. The design and layout hallmarks are maintained throughout this bright tabloid newspaper with professional placement of advertising, consistent headline fonts and appealing photos.  “For the community, by the community” is an appropriate slogan for this stand-out publication. Creative flair in design is reflected in every page.

 

Best News Feature Story – finalist, Warrandyte Diary

Eating Local – Is it possible? An appealing, inspiring package of words and pictures giving first hand experiences of eating only local food – info that residents can readily use to ‘eat local’ themselves.

 

Best Photograph – finalist, Warrandyte Diary

Ruben Harris-Allen. A very engaging image. Direct communication with the photographer at time of capture, translates to direct and strong communication with the viewer.  The subject is isolated from the background by both shallow depth of field and the beautiful warm side/top lighting.  Excellent technique in a challenging low light situation.

 

Best Sports Reporting – winner, Warrandyte Diary

The Warrandyte Diary was the standout to me. While it appears it may have a bigger budget then some other entrants I was impressed by its overall modern layout, fantastic eye-catching photos (particularly the emotion-charged shot of the dejected footballers which I thought was a really different angle from your usual action pic) and interesting and varied content about a wide range of local sport and achievers.

 

Best Article by a Person 18 years Or Younger – finalist, Warrandyte Diary

Top 10 things to do for the rest of winter by Sydney Lang. A clear, concise and colourful article to entice people to use their local neighborhood house, serving an important social function.

 

Best Newspaper – winner, Warrandyte Diary

Many big mainstream newspaper editors would be proud to say they produced a publication as professional as the Warrandyte Diary. Its layout can’t be faulted, the photos jump off the page, and there’s a great mix of news, sport and longer feature articles. It’s those articles that are a standout, so compelling that they sent me scrambling to the online editions to look for more.

Snakes on the slither

WITH an exceptionally warm start to Spring breaking all sorts of records, it makes sense our local “Snakebuster” Raymond Hoser has been in demand.

On the day we caught up for a chat he had been out to collect and move nine different snakes from seven different homes around Melbourne, including Donvale, Wonga Park, Warrandyte and incredibly even in densely developed Coburg. At two separate jobs he came across fights between two male Brown snakes, with all of them being captured and moved on.

In Warrandyte and surrounding suburbs, people can expect to see Tiger Snakes, Lowlands Copperheads and Eastern Browns, which are all incredibly dangerous.

While snakes will usually go away if left alone, anyone with dogs or children on the property are advised to call a snake catcher immediately. Although they charge a minimal fee, they will be there much faster than the council or DSE and he advises keeping an eye on them from a distance so they can easily be caught on arrival.

Generally, snakes don’t particularly need food to survive on a property and will seek out places to make their home based on shelter rather than the availability of food and water.

Things to avoid leaving around the home that create the perfect shelter for snakes include pieces of wood, metal, rocks and anywhere a snake can hide, no matter how small the area.

He also recommends making holes along the bottom of fence lines if you have dogs, so the snake has an escape route instead of being forced to defend themselves.

Many will choose the option of escape if available, rather than attacking the dog. According to Raymond, if a dog is bitten, owners can expect a bill of several thousand dollars with no guarantee of survival.

In Warrandyte, walking along the river especially, residents are urged to take care as the water source and plenty of northern sun maintains a healthy ecosystem for them to breed, sometimes in clutches of up to 26 at once, not uncommon for the tiger snake. Browns and Copperheads will still average around 8 to 12 eggs a clutch, which is why it is important for the snakes to be removed in the first instance they are seen as they could bring harm to children or pets.

If someone or a pet is bitten, it is important to be able to easily identify the snake so that the right anti-venom can be administered.

Evident by its name, the Brown Snake is brown, averages about 1.5 metres and has a small head that is barely distinguishable from its head alone. Hatchlings may present with dark markings around the body and head.

The Lowlands Copperhead is less common and tends to grow to about the same size, range in blackish to grey brown, sometimes with an orange or brown flush, which often results in them being mistaken for a Red Belly.

The Tiger, the most aggressive of the three, can be identified by its bands ranging in colour from blackish brown, to olive, yellow and black.

Always remember to carry your phone with you when out and about in the warmer months, not only so you can call an ambulance immediately if bitten, but to snap an identifying photo of the snake if possible.

While snakes will very rarely strike unless they are disturbed, their incredible camouflage skills continue to result in inevitable accidents. If you or someone close by is unfortunate enough to be bitten, don’t panic, ensure they stay still and apply a pressure bandage above the bite before getting them straight to hospital.

Call 9812 3322 or visit www.snakebusters.com.au

$2mill in 12 years

WARRANDYTE Community Bank Branch has ticked over the $2million mark in grant and sponsorship contributions in its 12th year of operation.

Warrandyte Community Bank chairman Aaron Farr said the Warrandyte and surrounding communities had thrown its support behind the locally owned and operated branch, transferring banking business across since the bank opened its doors in 2003.

“Local residents, traders, business owners and community groups have all seen the benefits of banking close to home,” Aaron said.

“We are extremely proud of reaching this milestone because it reflects not only the ongoing success of our business, but most importantly, shows how much of a difference we have been able to make in the community.”

Aaron said Warrandyte Community Bank Branch was a true community venture, which offered a full range of banking products and services in a business model designed to strengthen the local community.

“Achieving $2 million in funding shows that taking control of our community’s financial future is not only possible, but profitable,” he said.

“And the more people who choose to bank with us, the more profits we can return to the community through sponsorships and grants.

“Reaching the $2 million mark is such a fantastic achievement for a community enterprise that many per- ceived as a far-off dream 12 years ago.

“But we have taken this dream for a locally-owned and operated bank and turned it into a reality, financially sup- porting hundreds of community initiatives in the process. Thanks to the support of our shareholders, branch staff, company board and customers, we have been able to grow to be one of the biggest sources of community funding in the local area.”

Funding granted by Warrandyte Community Bank Branch has gone towards supporting a range of community groups, projects and events including:

Manningham SES – Inflatable Rescue Boat

An inflatable rescue boat is an essential and important piece of Manningham SES’s range of life-saving equipment. Receiving $18,254.60 in the 2014/15 grants program ensured the SES was able to replace a very old rescue boat with a new up-to-date model to be used in emergency situations.

Wonga Park Primary – Raising the Roof project

Wonga Park Primary School has been able to complete stage one of its Raising the Roof project. A $35,000 grant enabled the school to build the framework and raise the roof over an existing basketball court.

The undercover area is used for physical education, general play, before school tennis, after school basketball training, OSHC outdoor activities and community events.

Park Orchards Primary School – running track

February 23, 2015 saw the official opening of the new running track at Park Orchards Primary School (POPS). POPS received a Warrandyte Community Bank Branch grant of $33,000 making the school’s dream a reality. The two lane synthetic running track has been a hit with the school’s children who have been putting it to the test ever since.

Greater Warrandyte CFAs – Thermal Imaging cameras

A grant of $42,900 enabled the Greater Warrandyte CFA brigades to purchase much needed thermal imaging equipment. This is a huge asset for the whole community as it enables firefighters to check for hotspots which could reignite fires, to locate persons in burning structures or for search and rescue missions that were previously unseen or difficult to detect.

Warrandyte Pavillion

The Warrandyte Sporting Group with members of the Warrandyte senior and junior football clubs, Warrandyte Cricket Club and Warrandyte Netball Club along with the general public has been able to enjoy the newly built sports pavillion following its completion in 2014. Warrandyte Community Bank Branch contributed $150,000 to this local project.

Scholarships

Since 2011, local tertiary students have been able to kick-start their further education with a scholarship from Warrandyte Community Bank.

With $10,000 each over two years to pay for study related expenses such as course fees, equipment, book and travel expenses a scholarship can help ease some of the financial burden of tertiary education.

Police urge Warrandyte residents to step up home security in light of crime spike

MANNINGHAM crime prevention unit is urging residents of Warrandyte and surrounds to be vigilant with security of their homes and to invoke the basic Neighbourhood Watch Principles after another increase in crime in recent months.
Senior constable Carla Reardon told the Diary there had been a spike in burglaries in Warrandyte, Templestowe, Park Orchards and Donvale.

“By no means are we wanting to alarm people, but do need home security increased in the area to help deter burglars,” Sen Const Reardon said. “On many occasions people have security systems but  aren’t arming them or they are inactive for a variety of reasons including being broken or residents are only out for a short time.
“We are reminding residents to lock their houses including doors and windows, be aware of any suspicious behaviour, and people or vehicles that look as though they are out of place. Descriptions and details are very useful. It’s important to report any suspicious behaviour to 000 at the time of seeing these things so police have the opportunity to attend and make an assessment of it.
“Increase natural surveillance, for example, keeping gardens trimmed and having working sensor lights.
Get to know your neighbours and notify them if you will be away for a period of time, even just the weekend.”

ATO scam rattles residents – just hang up!

THE latest money-grabbing scam has hit residents in Warrandyte in the form of a hoax phone call to landlines or mobile phones.

On answering the phone, the listener receives a recording in a female voice with an American accent advising it is a call from The Australian Taxation Office suggesting you have failed to pay an outstanding debt. You are warned unless contact is made immediately, arrest warrants will be issued.

To prevent that from happening the caller is told to phone a Melbourne or Sydney number to arrange immediate payment.

Needless to say, it’s a hoax message.  The Diary contacted the ATO who advise it has been flooded with calls and has nothing to do with the message. It has been reported to the Australian Federal Police, but the AFP are powerless to stop the calls as they originate from overseas and the phone numbers given (Voice-over-IP lines) are changed frequently.

If you receive such a call, the best advice is to simply hang up.