Posted on Wednesday 26th June, 2019

Rose Milnes – Volunteer of the Year 2018

Masters Swimming Queensland is extremely grateful to a large number of our members who give so generously of their time in support of our organisation. They are board members and officials, club presidents, treasurers, secretaries, committee members, recorders and good people who are always happy to help out in any way they can. Each year, we ask our clubs to nominate such a person to be awarded ‘Volunteer of the Year’. MSQ are very happy to share that our Volunteer of the Year for 2018 was Rose Milnes of Redlands Bayside Masters (QRB).

Rose is always happy to help her club whenever required. In addition to this, she has spent a great deal of time assisting the MSQ office by working on spreadsheets, collating and processing results, and packaging and posting certificates and other awards to our membership. Nothing is too much trouble, and everything is done with a smile and good nature. Rose has also completed the time keeper course, and is happy to assist with time keeping at many events.

In November 2018, Rose, with her good friend Linda Mansfield (QRB) worked tirelessly during the lead up and throughout the Pan Pacific Masters Games as Volunteer Coordinators. They contacted, provided uniforms and timetables to over 50 volunteers, ensuring all were well looked after with refreshments and breaks throughout the long days. This was an invaluable role, and one that helped to ensure the success and good will of the Games.

We hope you enjoy finding out a little more about our Volunteer of the Year 2018, Rose Milnes.

MSQ President, Shane Knight, presenting Rose with Volunteer of the Year 2018 award

How did you first become involved with swimming?

I have been swimming for over five years with Redlands Bayside Masters at the Cleveland Pool. I joined QRB January 2014 at the same time as Tina Hanley and Brenda Wright. We became good friends with the common interest of swimming. Our coach Ann Gartshore always inspires us to keeping going.

Swimming is in the family. My children swam when they were younger in a local swim club, and my husband was the coach and also club president at different times.  

My daughter Rachel Archer was first involved in masters’ swimming with Redlands Masters. Watching Rachel swim inspired me to get involved and develop a healthier lifestyle.  

I swim because it keeps me moving. Gliding through water is an amazing feeling and helps keep the blood circulating. The coffee after training with all those endorphins flowing is nice too.

I felt my strongest prior to my injury when I broke my fibula bone in my right leg in a skiing accident at the snowfields, Falls Creek in June 2014. I had many struggles with my recovery. However, getting back in the water with a physiotherapist at the Chandler pool made a big difference to me both physically and mentally. Freestyle is my best stroke; I am working on improving backstroke.

Most memorable swimming moment?

Pan Pacific Masters Games in 2018 as a volunteer. I really enjoyed meeting so many competitors and watching them achieve their PBs.

What motivates and inspires you?

I am so inspired by all the masters’ swimmers with their determination to finish a race. I love meeting so many people who have such inspiring stories to tell.

The one person in this world that I would swim to the ends of the earth for is Rick Milnes. He was my husband, and he was an all-round wonderful man. My husband Rick gave a lifetime of 69 years of dedication to me, our three children and nine grandchildren, and he would have been so proud of a another blessing who is due to arrive soon. My husband had a passion for sport, as a fellow athlete, with Qld Masters Athletics Brisbane & Gold Coast clubs including surf lifesaver swimming. As part of his preparation for triathlons, he trained Friday mornings with fellow athletes at the Yeronga pool. He is dearly missed and I swim for him.

Favourite things? Likes and dislikes?

I enjoy timekeeping at swimming events, and helping MSQ. I also enjoy going to workshops at the Apple Store & Bunnings. I regularly go to the cinemas and like to binge watch series on Netflix.

I walk three mornings each week with my Heart Foundation friends, and love walking around the beaches and bush tracks at Coochiemudlo Island.

I also enjoy Corporate Social Bowls at Cleveland & Victoria Point bowls clubs. QRB regularly submit teams where we have fun and promote masters’ swimming.

Family Involvement

I help my son with the bookkeeping for his business. I stay every couple weeks for 3 days on the Sunshine Coast with my son and his two children.

My eldest daughter and her husband have been travelling around the country in a caravan as their three girls have all grown up and left home. When their children were younger, I spent time knitting jumpers and sewing princess dresses for them to play in their castle playhouse. I also made all sorts of costumes for their school plays. 

I enjoy aqua aerobics with my daughters and older granddaughters who are now all in their twenties.

My youngest daughter and her husband have four children and I was helping a few days a week with my younger grandchildren with school and childcare drop off and pickups. Her husband has been a fly-in fly-out worker and they have just moved to Weipa for his work and she has already gained employment as a swim teacher at the local swim school.

Other interesting facts

In the early 1970s, my family moved across the country following mining jobs. We lived in the mining towns of Blackwater QLD, and Tom Price WA. In the mid-1970s, we moved to Hong Kong for three years, where my husband was involved with the building of the mass transit tunnels under the Hong Kong Harbour. We took many holidays around Asia, America, Canada and Hawaii during this time.

Philosophy on life or favourite saying/motto?

Motto: People who have walked your path know how it feels.

I believe it is important to be caring and to connect with others through empathy. Our MSQ President, Shane Knight is a true example of this.

Linda and Rose – Volunteer Coordinators at PPMG18
Rose and Linda – Volunteer Coordinators at the MSQ State Championships 2019.