Eckville FCSS hosted its annual Volunteer Appreciation Night on April 11 at the Eckville Legion.
The night honoured three couples with a Lifetime Achievement Award and 10 individuals with a Volunteer Award.
The Lifetime Achievement Award was to recognize “outstanding voluntary service to the community of Eckville,” said Eckville Mayor Helen Posti in her presentation remarks.
She explained this year they were looking to honour couples who volunteer together, and these couples were chosen because they have all done a lot of volunteering together.
Doug and Georgina Rhodes were the first to be given the award.
Doug Rhodes says he has been volunteering since 1954 and hopes to be able to go out and do more.
“There’s just one think to be careful of, it gets in your blood,” said Rhodes after receiving the award. “You just have to do it. It gets to where you have fun doing it.”
Next, Posti presented a Lifetime Achievement Award to Verna Clark, who accepted the award on behalf of herself and her husband, Doug Clark.
“They came into our community and immediately stepped into the volunteer role,” said Posti, adding the two are responsible for the Thrift Store in town.
“There’s a bunch of awesome people here and it’s the best community in the world to work for… I love it here so much,” said Verna Clark, adding Eckville is “a great place to live.”
The final Lifetime Achievement Award of the night went to Doug and Geri Gordon, who happened to be volunteering at the event, and can be found at the Legion at any given time.
Geri Gordon agreed with Doug Rhodes’ comment in her acceptance remarks saying volunteering is “lots of fun.”
The next group honoured at the Volunteer Appreciation Night event were members of the Library Board.
The first two Volunteer Awards were given to Andrea and Shawn Grodesky, who Posti said were “too young” to get a Lifetime Achievement Award, but deserved recognition after all the hard work they put into the Eckville Municipal Library remodel.
Library Board members to also receive a Volunteer Award were Dana Kreil, Kevin See, Pam Carritt, Colleen Ebden, Sandra Tremblay, Garth Yeomans and Geri Gordon, as well as library manager Patti Skocdopole.
Heather Allen, FCSS director, said it is important to support volunteerism because so many things in town are run by volunteers.
“We have a good volunteer base and it’s important to recognize them and we’ve been doing this for… 30 years,” said Allen, adding the turn out at the event on April 11 was “amazing.”
Allen also said the event, which will run again next year, and anyone who volunteers in the community is welcome.
Anyone wishing to nominate a volunteer for next year’s awards can contact Allen at Eckville FCSS.
The event was held during National Volunteer Week, which runs April 7-13.