GOLDEN SILVER: Kerry Silver has a big heart to bring to her candidacy for Division 3, as her outstanding work in the 2011 floods showed.
GOLDEN SILVER: Kerry Silver has a big heart to bring to her candidacy for Division 3, as her outstanding work in the 2011 floods showed. David Nielsen

Silver lining in helping community for candidate

OF the people and for the people.

That is what Division 3 candidate Kerry Silver certainly is.

You just have to look back at the 2011 floods to discover what makes Ms Silver tick and why serving the community as a councillor appeals to her.

Ms Silver, who has worked as the electorate officer for retiring Cr Victor Attwood for 13 years, came to work along Old Ipswich Rd on January 10, 2011 and noted the creek was high.

At 11am she was sent home by Cr Attwood.

But what happened next speaks to what drives her.

Ms Silver visited Riverview Community Centre but noted it was closed.

So she went to see the centre secretary Christine MacDonald.

"I said, 'Chris, I think we are going to have to open the community centre because we need to have somewhere for people to go'," Ms Silver said.

Ms Silver knew from council flood mapping that properties were in jeopardy and was aware of the flooding Riverview suffered in 1974.

The duo went to see Pastor Paulo, the centre president, and it was decided to open the centre as a flood evacuation and recovery centre.

Ms Silver, as area co-ordinator for Riverview Neighbourhood Watch, received a call from Goodna Police to evacuate the community.

"I was told we need to start door knocking, so we did," she said.

"We door knocked down Brisbane Rd, Duncan St and other local streets.

"We probably had about 40 people staying in the centre overnight."

Whatever was needed was rounded up.

"We improvised and made use of what we had," Ms Silver said.

"It was amazing to see the people of the community come together. Boxes of bananas started coming and food showed up every day."

Businesses and community groups were all co-opted to help.

Ms Silver, who has lived in Riverview since 1987, apart from her university years, hasn't forgotten those that suffered in the floods and still visits them to check on their welfare.

"There are people who, when we get a shower of rain, are anxious. The resilience has been amazing but there are still people with anxiety," she said.

"I met senior people at Goodna, and there was a lady named Joan in a Department of Housing unit who had an issue where water would flow over the retaining wall and flood her little garden area.

"For her there was a sense of 'am I going to be flooded again?' I still see Joan regularly and phone her.

"I am one of those people who will go out of their way to help somebody. If you can make someone else happier it makes you feel better and part of the community."

Ms Silver, who received an Ipswich City Medallion from council for her work in the floods, points out it wasn't just the people in the immediate vicinity that benefited.

"The flood recovery was never just about the people from Riverview," she said.

"It was all about who needed us at the time so we were providing packages and delivering furniture to people in Redbank, Goodna, Collingwood Park and from all over the city.

"People knew to come and see us."



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