October 28, 2022

Rino Minniti wins Victorian Senior of the Year Award

Long-standing Northern Health Foundation supporter, Rino Minniti, was awarded the 2022 Victorian Senior of the Year Award at Government House on Wednesday, recognising his wonderful efforts to make a positive difference in our community.

Rino migrated from Southern Italy to Australia in 1966, where he opened his first hair salon in Lalor, welcoming local and wider community members six days a week for over fifty years. Unsurprisingly, Rino also found the time to propagate plants to sell at markets to raise funds for cancer services, often laughing and chatting with the locals that helped to form an even deeper connection with his community.

In addition to working long weeks, Rino continues to participate in many cancer fundraiser activities, for which he has been involved in for over 20 years. With his family having been touched by cancer many times, Rino’s support has been invaluable to Northern Health.

In November 2020, Rino held a ‘Walk for Cancer’ fundraiser, where he took on the task of walking from Northern Hospital Epping to PANCH in Preston, an impressive distance of 11.3km. This was an incredible effort on Rino’s behalf, who was able to raise vital funds for Northern Health Cancer Services.

His commitment and involvement with the community is nothing short of inspiring. Patients who undergo treatment at Northern Health often frequent charity events held by Rino and his wife Josie Minniti OAM, to show their support.

Henni Wade, Volunteer Services Manager, Northern Hospital Epping, nominated Rino for the award, and was thrilled upon hearing he’d been accepted as the winner.

“Rino has been such an amazing help not only to Northern Health, but the community as a whole. I think everyone really feels that. He’s fundraising efforts have helped raise money to purchase items that have held such great use for so many people, it’s just wonderful.”

In 1999-2000, Rino’s hair salon was also awarded Whittlesea’s Business of the Year, and Rino received another award, winning Whittlesea’s Citizen of the Year. Together, Rino and Josie commenced their charity work together in 1999, and each have been a pillar of strength to one other, raising $750,000 for cancer services at both the Austin and Northern Hospital Epping throughout this time.

Rino’s fundraising has enabled the purchase of a significant array of equipment for Northern Hospital Epping, including treatment chairs, a machine to detect breast cancer for the Emergency Department, a defibrillator, and many more important pieces of equipment to improve quality of life care and life-changing services.

Thank you Rino for being an outstanding citizen, and a pillar in our community. We look forward to seeing the amazing things you will achieve in the future. On behalf of everyone at Northern Health, we extend our sincere congratulations and gratitude.