With an incredible commitment to serving and supporting the community, Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation donors Nancy Wood OAM and Ian Wood have participated in every aspect of community life from heritage and history, to community music projects and saving their local environment.
After meeting Nancy at the University of Adelaide, and graduating, Ian purchased a small pharmacy in Port Pirie, South Australia. Then, newly married, Ian operated the pharmacy to make it both an important community asset and a successful business, with Nancy assisting.
Ian recalls they worked very hard as small business owners while also caring for their two children and incredibly, found time to volunteer for several community projects.
“Nancy and I were founding members of the Port Pirie Branch of the National Trust in 1967. Nancy served as president for 38 years and I was treasurer and secretary. Nancy was the first woman Branch president elected in South Australia and perhaps in Australia. Nancy was not only preserving history, but she was also making it,” said Ian.
Over the course of 38 years, they worked hard to save a significant number of historic buildings in Port Pirie and established the local museum. Nancy organised fundraisers for their branch including concerts, old style dances and the occasional street parade.
Ian and Nancy Wood were recently presented Swanson Society pins recognising their support of the Foundation.
Preserving history and saving heritage were not the only interests for this talented couple.
“We both became involved in Port Pirie Music Club and revived the Club Choir in 1990, with daughter Phillippa as conductor. Since 2003 we have also performed hundreds of duet and quartet concerts at no cost, entertaining residents of aged care and adult day care centres, with the Merry Music Makers Quartet and Nancy at the piano.”
In 2004 Nancy was recognised for her wonderful contribution to the Port Pirie community and received an Order of Australia Medal.
Both Nancy and Ian stay fit and on daily walks collect discarded bottles and plastic containers littered on the roadside for a 10c return. “I imagine I would be the only donor who donated $180 from 1800 drink containers collected last year, in addition to our normal contributions!”
In 2009, Ian, together with Rev Trevor Bensch, was a co-founder of the group Christians Supporting Choice for Voluntary Assisted Dying. As spokesperson and national co-ordinator, Ian has been very involved in lobbying for this compassionate end of life choice.
Continuing their life-long commitment to serving their community, Nancy and Ian established their Charitable Fund Account 2016 with the Foundation to provide ongoing financial support in perpetuity to their favourite not-for-profit organisations as well as funding a singing scholarship for young performers.
“Being involved and supporting our community has always been important to us. We have experienced both sides of the financial spectrum and this is a major factor in our wish to donate back to the community through Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation,” added Ian.