Editorial – Time to spread the volunteer love

The Town of Morinville throws a big party once a year to recognize all the people who volunteer in the community by serving on boards, coaching kids in sports, organizing local events, and all the other things that people do to make this community…well… a community. The Town understands the importance of volunteers to the vibrancy of the community. We understand it, too. That’s why each year we write an article or two to let our readers know it is time to nominate people in the community for the various levels of volunteer awards. It’s why each year we go to the awards to take pictures of the people being recognized. It’s why we have chosen to create our own award as part of this important annual event.

Last year people were late to the post in stepping up to acknowledge those who do so much for so many. Eleven days from the close of nominations and there were exactly three nominations submitted. We submitted two of those: one for a local business and one for a local youth. None of the three nominations that had been submitted were actually for Volunteer of the Year.

To say we were embarrassed and disgusted that the community placed so little value on the work volunteers do would be a gross understatement. Frankly, we were pissed about it and set up a nomination page on our news site to get the process rolling. It worked and the nominations committee had plenty to choose from by the deadline.

Let’s not let this happen again this year.

There would not be a puck dropped in Morinville if it were not for volunteers. There would not be a parade go up the street if it were not for volunteers. There would not be one single non-profit organization or service club in this community were it not for volunteers. And while we all use the services; while we all go to the events; while we all want our kids in hockey, and basketball, and baseball – let us make damned sure these people are recognized by taking a few minutes of our time to nominate them for the recognition they deserve.

We hear regularly from residents about the issues that will destroy the vibrancy of the town. Over the past three years we have heard many of them. But what will destroy the community is unappreciated volunteers being unappreciated for too long. If they stopped giving their time and money, nothing would happen here. Nothing.

But that will never happen because those who give their time and money to (like a large bowl of bran) get things moving will continue to do so because it is the right thing to do. They know if they stopped, there would be no youth sports, no youth programming, no community events, no community organizations. There would be none of that.
It’s time to pay the piper, Morinville. We enjoy the fruits of the volunteer’s labours year round. Lets take 10 minutes to send an e-mail to nominate the people in Morinville who make a difference in our lives, our children’s lives, our seniors’ lives and who add to our community’s vibrancy.

We’ve set up a special page on MorinvilleNews.com to assist you in understanding what awards are available with links to nominate someone quick and easy. You can access the list by visiting morinvillenews.com/volunteer-of-the-year-nomination-page.

– SD

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