Above: Colleen Turner holds the Citizen of the Year Award she and husband Jim received from the Lions’ club. – Lucie Roy Photos
by Morinville News Staff
Volunteers were celebrated last week during National Volunteer Week, culminating in a special volunteer evening Friday night at the Morinville Community Cultural Centre. About 100 attended the event.
This year’s theme was Volunteers are the Roots of a Community, and the Town recognized it’s rooted volunteers with a pay-it-forward program, volunteer contribution wall, pictorial display thanking volunteers, and the annual recognition night complete with a meal catered by The Green Bean.
“It’s important that the Town recognize it’s volunteers for the commitment that they give to our community,” said Melonie Dziwenka, Community Program / FCSS Coordinator, adding volunteers provide mentoring and the creation of opportunities for sharing their skills. “The benefits that they bring provides us with opportunities for youth to be mentored and it provides for our festivals and our programs to excel. It allows us to do many opportunities that wouldn’t be here if we didn’t have the volunteers.”
Mayor Lisa Holmes said she was also appreciative of the opportunity to recognize the community’s volunteers.
Volunteers are the heart of our community,” Holmes said. “Every single thing that we do — every organization, and every event that we have — requires volunteers. And we wouldn’t have the amazing and vibrant community that we do without them. So it is important that we take the time to say ‘thank you.'”
Although the Town did not give out individual awards, the Rendez-Vous Club’s Heritage Award, Morinville News’ Paul Krauskopf Community Spirit Award and Lions Club’s Citizen of the Year were all presented during the event.
The Rendez-Vous Heritage Award recipient was Simone Gervais; a woman praised for her many hours of dedication to the community in general and the club specifically.
Keith Norris who passed Apr. 1 was recognized posthumously as the Paul Krauskopf Community Spirit Award Recipient. Norris, who served on the Libary Board, Friends of the Library, Sturgeon Victim Services, Citizens on Patrol and Traffic and Pedestrian Advisory Committee was remembered mostly as a man who championed the underdog.
The Morinville Community Library and staff received the award in his honour and will showcase the award at the library.
Jim and Colleen Turner were this year’s Lions’ Club Citizen of the Year for their work supporting the arts, festivals, Lions’ Club, and numerous donations from their business J.M. Turner Goldsmith to local causes.