EDMONTON – Six Alberta volunteers have been awarded for their service at the Stars of Alberta Volunteer Awards. The honours were given out Friday morning, during a ceremony at Edmonton’s Government House. Five of the winners are from Edmonton and nearby towns.
Award winners are split into three categories: youth, adult, and senior. This year’s two youth category winners, Ravina Anand and Mohit Kumar, are both from Edmonton.
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Anand, an Edmonton Youth Council member, works with several local charities, including Ronald McDonald House, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and Hope Mission. Anand was also selected as a delegate for a National Model United Nations conference in Prague earlier this year.
Kumar was recognized for his work with Frontier College, a Canada-wide literacy program, and for organizing a partnership between Frontier and the Water Wings Employment Readiness Program. Over the past two years, this partnership has helped more than 3,500 people find and keep jobs.
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Winning awards in the adult category were Hanna’s Roberta Rehill and Deanna Lennox of Fort Saskatchewan. Rehill has worked with several charities in Hanna over the past 25 years, including the Hanna and District Youth Club.
Lennox, a long-time RCMP employee, works with first responders suffering from PTSD. She founded the War Horse Awareness Foundation to help provide therapy for afflicted first responders.
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Last but not least, the winners in the senior category were Dawning Boston of Edmonton and Vegreville’s Dwayne Hlady.
Boston has also volunteered with several local charities, including with the Strathcona Lions Club, Heart and Stroke Foundation, and the Canadian Cancer Society. Boston is also a former board member and president of the Lifestyle Helping Hands Seniors Association.
Hlady has worked with several charities for seniors in and around Vegreville, including the Vegreville Agricultural Society, Lion’s Club, and the Two Hills and District Historical Society. Dwayne has also led the Vegreville Transportation Services Society, which provides handivan service and taxi vouchers for rural seniors.
The Stars of Alberta Awards are given out annually to people who have positively impacted their communities. They’re given out each year around International Volunteer Day, an international holiday created by the UN to honour community leaders.