March 9, 2023

David Mehan congratulates Local Woman of the Year for The Entrance electorate, Ms Te’re Melrose (popularly known as ‘TJ’) for her tremendous efforts as the creator and driving force behind the not-for-profit organisation Doggie Dates NSW Ltd.

 The NSW Local Woman of the Year Award is an annual event that coincides with International Women’s Day.   This event recognises and celebrates the achievements of women and the contributions they make to their local communities.

 Ms Melrose established the organisation in 2015 that reaches a diverse range of participants including retirees, young people, families, and people with physical and or mental health challenges.  Ms Melrose's goal is to connect the community through regional based dog walking groups.

 The organisation currently has 6 regional groups, one of which is on the Central Coast and interacts with the community via walks and social media posts. Ms Melrose has designed these groups to be safe and to help foster inclusiveness, socialisation and friendships; as well as providing education in responsible dog ownership.

 Ms Melrose also volunteers with Paws Pet Therapy and regularly visits organisations such as aged care facilities, groups supporting children, young people with special needs and those who have experienced trauma.

  “I was delighted to attend a recent Doggie Dates event with my dog Gruff and present Ms Melrose with her certificate.

 This group is much more than just a dog walking group.  The benefits to individual health and wellbeing are evident with the growing popularity of Doggie Dates on the Central Coast.

  “I now look forward to attending the official 2023 NSW Women of the Year Awards ceremony in Sydney with Ms Melrose to celebrate her wonderful achievement,” said Mr Mehan.