Eight exemplary volunteers will receive a lifetime honour for their hard work.
The Newfoundland and Labrador Volunteer Hall of Fame is honouring its second group of inductees, as it was just launched last year.
The announcement was made Thursday as a part of National Volunteer Week, April 21-27.
“Volunteers need to be recognized for the contributions they make to their communities, which is the essence of volunteer week,” said Toby Barnes, co-founder of the Volunteer Hall of Fame.
The inductees were announced by Ed Roberts, chairman of the selection committee and former lieutenant-governor of Newfoundland and Labrador. In alphabetical order they are: Ralph Barrett from Mount Pearl, Joyce Churchill from Portugal Cove-St. Philip’s, Don Gladney from Logy Bay-Middle Cove-Outer Cove, James Kelly from Conception Bay South, Felix Maloney from Summerville in Bonavista Bay, Douglas Moores from Harbour Grace, Anthony Reardon from St. Joseph’s, and Gerald Thomas from Musgravetown.
“The difficulty is choosing.
We had a lot of nominees, any of whom could have been inducted or been offered the opportunity,” said Roberts.
History of helping
All eight inductees have a long history of community involvement in many different areas.
Barrett led the development of Boy Scout units in Newfoundland and has written extensively on the province’s history and culture. Churchill is a founding member of the autism society and helped establish the Elaine Dobbin Centre for Autism in St. John’s.
Gladney has devoted 64 years to youth development, namely through the Air Cadet Program. Kelly has been a fixture at the HUB, the service centre for those with physical disabilities on Merrymeeting Road, since an accident put him in a wheelchair in 1988.
At 82, Maloney is a stalwart of his community in a number of ways, especially for providing transportation to medical care. Moores is well known for the 1982 provincial summer games in Harbour Grace and Carbonear and helped get new recreation facilities there.
Reardon has long been a youth leader, through starting both an extracurricular program at his school and a Cadet corp. Thomas
is particularly recognized for his work with the Musgravetown Volunteer Fire Department and St. John Ambulance.
Along with Roberts, the selection committee consisted of Charlie Stacey, publisher of The Telegram and member of the Provincial Council of The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, and Susan Green, who helped start the School Lunch Program and received the Queen’s Golden Jubilee medal in 2002 for her work on food security.
Inductees were chosen based on a set of weighted criteria, with engagement and impact having the heaviest weight, said Roberts.
“Each of the three of us, about two weeks ago, this whopping great book was delivered to us, so we did our homework, ... and often we were congruent,” with the choices, Roberts said.
MHA Steve Kent spoke on behalf of the government, and said there are almost 200,000 active volunteers contributing millions of hours in the province.
“And if it wasn’t for those people, we wouldn’t be able to have the town councils that we have. We wouldn’t be able to have the school councils that we have, our churches, our sports groups, our volunteer fire halls.
“All of those services in the community depend on volunteers.”
A gala dinner is set for Oct. 4 at the Sheraton Hotel Newfoundland to formally honour the eight inductees to the Volunteer Hall of Fame.
The Telegram and its parent company, TC Media, are sponsors of the hall of fame.