Margot Sherwill was made a Paul Harris Fellow in recognition of her active role in international service, with a focus on education.
She has been heavily involved in the Awake and Shine School and the Youth Exchange program, delivering notable achievements, often at personal expense.
Retired General Jimmy Singh, who founded the Awake and Shine School sent the following letter of commendation:
‘‘Mrs Margot Sherwill has been a regular volunteer visitor since 2012 to The Awake and Shine Primary School, in the remote Himalayas at Samthar, India.
‘‘She has worked selflessly with tremendous devotion to enhance the English-teaching skills and confidence of our teachers, and the learning outcome of the children.
‘‘She also mentored a program to enhance the teaching skills, broaden horizons, leadership and confidence level of two of our selected teachers on a sponsored trip to Australia.
‘‘Her greatest achievement has been the publication of English readers based on the students’ experiences in their village, illustrated with colour photographs of local characters. She has completed 145 readers spanning the first of schooling.
‘‘This has resulted in amazing improvement, in English vocabulary, reading and speaking skills, and confidence level of the children. She is engaged in completing readers for class 3 and 4.
‘‘Gifted with a cheerful, kind and helpful nature she has bonded well with the staff, children and community. Her contribution to rural education in a remote Himalayan region in India will be gratefully remembered in the future.’’
Mrs Sherwill participated in the District 9790 Youth Exchange committee until 2016. She has held the position of student counsellor at club level, where her input covered all aspects of the inbound and outbound exchanges.
In the wider Benalla community she was on the hospital board for five years and is the Red Cross Emergency Services team convenor for Benalla. She will also be the vice-president of Probus in 2017-2018.