Grande Prairie Volunteer Services Bureau50 Years

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Meet the 2016 Leaders of Tomorrow

The Leaders of Tomorrow Awards program was started in Grande Prairie in 1998 to recognize students who made outstanding contributions to their communities through their volunteerism. By recognizing these exceptional volunteers the Leaders of Tomorrow Awards purpose is to inspire other students to follow their example to the benefit of the region.

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Front Row: Justin & Fiona Munroe (Aimee Munroe), Brooke Lowen, Kira Portsmouth, Isabelle Rorem, Sydney Ondrik, Larry Gibson (ATCO), Dan Magnan (ATCO)

Back Row: Erika Stamp, Kirk Portsmouth, Savannah McKay, Blaine Badiuk, Truelee Love

Photos Courtesy of Cara Jones

The Grande Prairie Volunteer Services Bureau takes pride in promoting this innovative and exciting program in the South Peace Region.

Congratulations to the 2016 Leaders of Tomorrow Award Recipients!

A Leader of Tomorrow should exhibit dedication and excellence in any field of volunteer work including school, community, social activism, athletics or arts; and, inspire the spirit of volunteerism in others through their leadership.

Award recipients receive a trophy, a certificate, a monetary award of $100, and a $100 donation in their name to a registered charity of their choice.

The Grande Prairie Volunteer Services Bureau would like to acknowledge the work of the FCSS offices that assist in promoting the Leaders of Tomorrow each year: FCSS Town of Beaverlodge, City of Grande Prairie Community Social Development, FCSS County of Grande Prairie, FCSS M.D. of Greenview; FCSS Village of Hythe, FCSS Town of Sexsmith, and FCSS Town of Wembley.

The Selection Committee, which is made up of FCSS representatives, a representative from ATCO, and GPVSB staff, meets to review and select the recipients each year.

ATCO has been involved as a sponsor since 2001 and in 2013 became the Presenting Sponsor. We would like to thank ATCO for their continued support of the Leaders of Tomorrow Awards.

 The 2016 Leaders of Tomorrow Profiles

 Age Category 13 – 15 Years

Sydney Ondrik was nominated by Girl Guides of Canada. Her chosen charity Girl Guides of Canada.

Sydney

“Sydney has a passion for volunteerism. She is always the first to lend a hand no matter what, often taking the initiative on her own.” Sydney spends many hours volunteering she helps setup and cleanup events at Saskatoon Lake Hall. She has participated in highway and park cleanups. Spends time with the elderly at Mackenzie Place through the Adopt a Grandparent program. She also spends time fundraising for many different events like the Annul Women’s Diamond Dinner. Sydney is a member of the Girls Guide of Canada 1st Wembley Pathfinder Unit becoming a role model to many younger girls in the 1st Wembley Sparks and Brownie Units by helping and teaching them in the Guiding movement.

Brooke Lowen was nominated by Hillside Jr/Sr High School. Her chosen charity is Big Hearts for Big Kids Charitable Foundation

Brooke

“Brooke epitomizes the moral precept of doing good for goodness sake, and is a shining example of selflessness and compassion.” Brooke is an accomplished musician and vocalists and spends time helping and teaching younger children to sing and play instruments. She has taken a leadership role in planning her school band trips and fundraisers. She participates in many school activities and fundraising events, always helping and encouraging her peers to do their best. She participates in her community in various events charities, and activities that support seniors, the less fortunate and local businesses. She is also an active member in her church youth group.

Kira Portsmouth was nominated by Arlene Garcia. Her charity of choice Valleyview Royal Purple

Kira

“Kira goes above and beyond to help others and tries to encourage others to do the same. She will be a lifelong volunteer.” Kira is always willing to help her neighbors and classmates and is very friendly to everyone. She actively seeks out volunteer opportunities which led her to helping at the Valleyview Library, Enhancement Society and a local greenhouse. Kira always participates in school sponsored activities as well as self-directed extra-curricular activities. She is often the first to volunteer her time to school events and fundraisers.

 

Isabelle Rorem was nominated by the Sexsmith Secondary School. Her chosen charity is Odyssey House.

Isabelle

“Isabelle always has a positive, willing attitude, and an obvious desire to help other.” Isabelle is an active member in many school groups, like Interact Club, which has participated in many community and international service project. She is the current President of her school’s Leadership Committee where she plans and leads many school assemblies and events, like Sabre Days. She is also a member of the newly formed Sexsmith Youth Council. A district school representative for JSET and Champion programs where she evokes positive school changes. She has been an Ambassador, and will be an Advocate, for Mighty Peace Day, and serves on the Mighty Peace Youth for Change Board.

Age Category 16 – 18 Years 


Savannah Mckay was nominated by the Beaverlodge Regional High School. Her chosen charity is the Wolverines Wheelchair Sports Association

savannah

“Savannah is a gifted athlete with a determined work ethic, she is always willing to embrace new challenges and try new ideas.” She is a devoted leader in her schools Leadership Club organizing and planning their meetings and events. She has helped plan and execute many school events, for both students and teachers, and helped with fundraising activities. Savannah is always willing to help others and help support their ideas. She is captain of the Senior Varsity Volleyball team leading them to both zones and provincial championships, and a dedicated head coach for the Rebels Volleyball Club teaching younger students how to play the game, good sportsmanship and fair play.

Truelee Love was nominated by the City of Grande Prairie Community Social Development. Her chosen charity is the Sunrise House.

Truelee“Truelee is a natural leader in the learning community, having chaired the Student Voice Council twice”. She has been an instrumental part of her school’s Interact Club and Maverick Movement campaign, and helps in organizing many other school events and fundraising opportunities. Truelee is also a strong advocate for the LGBTQ+ youth in our area by speaking at school presentations and also in front of City Council in support of a Bill 10 Amendment to allow Gay-Straight Alliance Clubs at all schools. Truelee is currently one of the lead directors on documentary by the City of GP Youth Council focusing on Gender Guidelines and the changes taking place in the Alberta LGBTQ+ youth community. She will be presenting at the Dare to Stand Out youth conference and hopes to attend the GSA forum in Toronto as a Grande Prairie Youth Representative.”

Kirk Portsmouth was nominated by Arlene Garcia. His chosen charity is the Valleyview Royal Purple Elks.

Kirk

“We the Residents of Red Willow Lodge are lucky to have a young man like Kirk come play cards with us each week. He is very good at it and is nice to see a youth of today take interest in something other than their cell phones.” Kirk is very respectful in spending his time with the residents at Red Willow Lodge and helps with various activities like sorting their recyclables for the bottle depot. Kirk is always looking for volunteer opportunities and always willing to help others, like his coaches and teammates at school and his neighbors at home. As his nominator wrote Kirk “embodies volunteerism.”

Erika Stamp was nominated by Wembley Parks & Rec. Her chosen charity is Pete's Pals Foundation

Erika

“Erika started off volunteering very young and has now spent 14 years of time and dedication to the Wembley Food Bank.” She helps with events at the Wembley United Church, Dimsdale Community Hall, and is very involved in in her communities major fundraising events, like Dawn’s Daughters and Discovery Days. Ericka has led many school groups such as Drama Club and Youth Group, but has helped found the Wembley Youth Engagement League and set up the Jurisdictional Student Engagement Team on behalf of the Alberta Speak Out program. Erika also has volunteered with Wembley Parks & Rec for the last 6 years and is a huge asset to the Wembley Public Library where she has volunteered for the last 2 years.

Blaine Badiuk was nominated by the City of Grande Prairie Community Social Development. His chosen charity is Grade 3 Reading Academy Society

Blaine

Blaine is an active leader in Charles Spencer community and GP Symphony Orchestra. He has gone above and beyond not only in helping others but also in participating in many musical and school events. He was instrumental in setting up his schools Facebook page and hosted many Student Speaks Out Events. Blaine is also a member of his Schools Council Advisory, Grad Council, School Orchestra and City of GP Youth Council, He was involved in Ministers Student Advisory Council, volunteer for Rory Tarant’s MLA election Campaign and founded the Maverick Action Committee.

 

Posthumous Award

Aimée Munro was nominated by the Grande Prairie Volunteer Services Bureau - her chosen charity is the Grande Prairie Regional Hospital Foundation (award accepted by Justin & Fiona Munroe)

Aimee

Aimée Munroe passed away on March 4th of this year and was only 14 years old. Aimée was what is often called an old soul in that she lived a lifetime in her few short years and while Aimée was often fun and funny and silly, deep down she was serious and mature and insightful.

Aimée was passionate about life. At the age of 10 Aimée was diagnosed with brain cancer and began her journey through the world of oncology. After over 3 years, 3 brain surgeries and 3 months in the US doing a specialized course of radiation Aimée's tumour had been pronounced stabile. Life could resume but was much changed, Aimée's health was permanently and unalterably damaged. At an early age Aimée took to downhill skiing and immediately set her goal to be an Olympian! Aimée raced every race she could and amassed a pretty respectable collection of gold and silver medals. Unfortunately, after surviving cancer, Aimée's dream of being an Olympian was gone so she made herself a new goal, to go to medical school and become a Pediatric Endocrinologist. While she no longer dreamed of Olympics she was not ready to let go of skiing. As she was too young to take the coaching certification Aimée volunteered as a coaching assistant. Aimée's new passion was "her kids". Aimée helped coach a group of 10 children aged 5-7 and always came home with a huge smile on her face and lots of stories.

Aimée had a sensitive heart and found she was not able to turn away from things that tugged at her and was constantly searching for a way to help. When she was small she donated the contents of her piggy bank to the Red Cross for Haiti relief. When her friend was diagnosed with Juvenile Diabetes she did the Diabetes walk with her and raised over $1000. As a patient at the Stollery she started making and selling friendship bracelets and raised over $1,800 for the Neurosurgery Kids Fund. Last year Aimée took part in the Canadian Cancer Society's Relay for Life and personally raised over $3,000. Most recently Aimée had seen a need at our local hospital and began sewing and filling pencil cases to be given to children on the Pediatric ward to help pass their time in the hospital. Aimée left this world much too early and that is our collective loss.

Photos (courtesy of Cara Jones, CSD)

 

 

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