Plastic Reduction Denmark’s Karen Andersson named citizen of the year at Australia Day Twilight Festival

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Denmark's Citizen of the Year Karen Andersson
Camera IconDenmark's Citizen of the Year Karen Andersson Credit: Shire of Denmark

Environmental advocate Karen Andersson has been named Denmark’s Citizen of the Year for 2022 for her volunteer efforts to abolish single-use plastic.

Leader of Plastic Reduction Denmark Ms Andersson was presented with the award at the Denmark Twilight Festival on Wednesday.

Ms Andersson started advocating to reduce the use of single-use plastic by hatching a plan to phase out plastic shopping bags by upcycling fabric into reusable bags.

The idea gained traction and the Plastic Reduction Denmark group was formed in 2015.

The volunteer-run group has since upcycled old curtains, doonas and men’s ties into more than 7000 reusable shopping bags and 6000 veggie net bags which were donated to the public.

The group now run a wash station which aims to reduce the use of plastic crockery and cutlery at public events such as the Denmark Arts Markets.

Founding member of William Bay National Park Association Gary Schwab won the senior citizen of the year award.

Alongside being an integral member of the national park association, Mr Schwab was also a board member for South Coast Natural Resource Management.

Mr Schwab has also volunteered his time to the Denmark Community Windfarm Inc, the Demark Environment Centre, Green Skills and several primary and high school P&C committees.

Denmark’s 2022 active citizenship award for an event or group was presented to Kwoorabup Community Markets.

The weekly Sunday markets have grown into a vibrant community hub for small businesses, fundraising and entertainment.

The market’s new co-ordinator Sumit Dutta has helped the market develop and attract new stall holders, now becoming a tourist attraction of its own.

The 2022 junior sportsperson of the year was presented to Isi Campbell, and the 2022 service to sport award was presented to Ashleigh Crock.

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