2020 Renee Thonard Award presented to Helen Hoppmann

4th November 2020

We were pleased to present this year’s Renee Thonard Award to a loved and respected member of our MS community, Helen Hoppmann. The MS Society’s most prestigious award was presented to Helen at the MS Society Annual General Meeting in October. The award is given annually in recognition of consistent and valuable service to the MS Society. The service of recipients, like Helen’s, has made a real difference in the lives of people affected by multiple sclerosis.

Helen is well-known in the Adelaide MS community as a mentor to people newly diagnosed with MS, a peer support group leader, and as the voice of people with MS in the MS Society Boardroom for three years.

When Helen was diagnosed with MS in 1999, she worked with the MS Society as an MS ambassador, visiting schools participating in the MS Readathon to help educate children about multiple sclerosis. It was then that she became passionate about educating as many people as possible, and helped to form the community fundraising group, the MSchievous Bunch.

The group has now raised thousands towards services and supports for people living with MS in South Australia and Northern Territory, including purchasing and supplying cooling vests free of charge to people with MS to manage heat sensitivity.

Helen says, “I was so surprised to win this award. If it wasn’t for all the support from our fundraising group members and supporters, peer support group members and my family, none of this would have been possible.”

We thank Helen for her ongoing and passionate service to people affected by MS.

Nominations open for the 2021 Renee Thonard Award

Nominations for the 2021 Renee Thonard Award are open. If you know someone who has made an outstanding contribution to people living with MS, make sure they get the recognition they deserve.

You can request a Renee Thonard Award nomination form here or contact MS Society SA & NT on
08 7002 6500 or at

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2020 Renee Thonard Award presented to Helen Hoppmann