She may only be 17, but that hasn't stopped Leah Giblin from giving hundreds of hours of her time to help others.
From helping care for her brother with special needs, volunteering on a range of school committees, giving her time to help at church, to teaching first aid and serving as a first responder, Leah has spent much of her life helping others.
It is this dedication to helping others that has led to Leah being awarded the 2020 Stratford District Council Youth Citizen's Award. The award recognises young people between the ages of 12 and 24 who reside in the Stratford District, who have made a significant and positive contribution to the wellbeing of the district and its citizens.
Despite the accolade, Leah says helping others around her is just part of everyday life.
"Isaac is my brother so of course I help. The other things I do in the community is because they're things I love."
While many teens might play or help care for younger siblings at home, Leah has done more than just play with her brother.
"I've learnt sign language as a way to communicate with Isaac. I've also helped teach him to read and write."
Leah moved to Stratford two years ago, after living in Eltham for most of her childhood.
She is in year 13 at Stratford High School, and has been involved with many school committees, working in the background to ensure events and programmes run smoothly.
"I'm deputy leader for the diversity club, captain of the literacy team where I encourage people to become life long readers. I'm also senior librarian where I make sure things are running smoothly."
Leah also finds the time to take to the stage, and act in school productions.
"Last year I was a lead character in Buckshot and Blossoms. I was meant to be a lead this year but the production was cancelled."
Outside of School, Leah is an active member in the community. She volunteered at Lake Rotokare, helping to clean the area.
"It was part of an internship where we had to choose a place to help clean. I chose Lake Rotokare because I love the nature."
An active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Leah is a member of the choir and supports the elderly. When not singing in the choir, Leah gives her time to the church community in a variety of ways, from painting fences or gardening to making wheelchair ramps and doing people's laundry when needed.
Helping people is a passion of Leah's, she says and she plans to continue caring for others in her future career.
"I want to work in medicine because I enjoy helping people. After I finish at school, I am planning on studying nursing."
While she hasn't started studying nursing yet, Leah is already a skilled first aider, and works for Frontline Ambulance as a first responder. In this role she attends events around the region.
"I've worked as a first responder for almost a year now. Recently I was the first responder at an Eltham Motorcross event and it was my first time working with a helicopter. I didn't ride in the helicopter but I assisted the patient. I also teach first aid to companies."
She says she was excited when she found out she was the recipient of the Stratford District Council Youth Citizens award for 2020.
"It's a big honour."