At a special ceremony attended by more than 400 dignitaries, nominees and their guests, Mark Forbes, the founder of endED, a Sunshine Coast service that now provides nationwide support to people with eating disorders and their families, was today (January 24) announced as the 2020 Sunshine Coast Citizen of the Year.
Mark and his wife Gayle started endED four years ago, after many years supporting two daughters battling the harrowing effects of an eating disorder, a heart-breaking experience for any parent.
From what began as a parent’s and carers support group each fortnight at their home, Mark now dedicates himself full-time on a voluntary basis to endED.
Recently, in partnership with the Butterfly Foundation, Mark has worked tirelessly to raise more than $2.8 million to develop endED Butterfly House, Australia’s first national residential treatment facility for eating disorder sufferers.
Mayor Mark Jamieson said the annual Sunshine Coast Australia Day Awards had again highlighted the outstanding work of so many community-focussed Sunshine Coast citizens and organisations.
“Our nominees in the Australia Day Awards are a very special group of achievers and this is our chance to say thank you,” Mayor Jamieson said.
“Their stories highlight just how fortunate we are to have so many everyday heroes amongst us.
“All of our award recipients are truly deserving of these accolades.
“Their passion and dedication to helping those in need and our broader community is inspiring and they make a difference to so many lives.
“From creating sporting opportunities for all, improving our environment, championing the arts, caring for our animals and giving back to this wonderful community, these awards are a true reflection of our healthy, smart and creative community.”
2020 Sunshine Coast Australia Day Award Recipients
- Mark Forbes – Citizen of the Year
- Ella Woodborne – Young Citizen of the Year
- Mark Skinner – Senior Citizen of the Year
- Sunshine Coast Animal Refuge – Community Group or Organisation
- Jennifer Radbourne – Creative
- Ten Little Pieces – Environment and Sustainability
- Robert Angus / Brendan Powell and Scott Park (joint recipients) – Sport and Recreation
The 2020 Australia Day Award recipients were nominated by the community and selected by a panel of local leaders, including the 2017 Sunshine Coast Australia Day Young Citizen of the Year, Jak Hardy and Angela Lisle (TAFE Queensland), Caroline Campbell (Seven Network), John Williams (92.7 MixFM) and Louise OKeeffe (Sunshine Coast Daily).
The 2020 Sunshine Coast Australia Day Awards are proudly supported by 7 News Sunshine Coast, MixFM, Maroochy RSL, Sunshine Coast Daily, TAFE Queensland, Living Smart Sunshine Coast and Sunshine Coast Sports Federation.