A new federal volunteer awards program will recognize the outstanding contributions of Canadians who volunteer their time, energy and talents to helping others, as well as local business leaders and individuals from not-for-profit organizations that make a difference in their communities.
“Our government is proud of the millions of volunteers and other everyday Canadians who generously give their time, experience and expertise to make their communities stronger,” said Prime Minister Stephen Harper. “These awards will celebrate their enormous contributions and we hope it encourages others to participate and make a difference in their own communities.”
A total of 17 Prime Minister’s Volunteer Awards will be presented annually. Fifteen regional awards will be presented to volunteers, business leaders and individuals from not-for-profit organizations.
Three awards will be available in each of the following five Canadian regions: Atlantic Canada, Québec, Ontario, the Prairies, British Columbia and Northern Canada. These will be presented in the following categories:
•Community Leader Award – Intended for individuals or groups, nominees must act as a catalyst to develop solutions to local problems.
•Business Leader Award – Intended for private sector recipients, nominees must demonstrate corporate social responsibility by using financial and/or human resources, and/or developing partnerships with not-for-profit organizations or social enterprises to address social issues.
•Social Innovator Award – Intended for the not-for-profit sector, nominees must demonstrate innovation by developing new approaches or new ideas to address social challenges.
There will also be two national awards, one to recognize lifelong achievement and one for a young adult.
Regional award recipients will receive a $5,000 grant for the not-for-profit organization of their choice, while national award recipients will receive $10,000 for their organization of choice.
The first call for nominations will open in April during National Volunteer Week and the recipients will be announced later in the year.
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