Seniors Helping Hands hosted their annual Volunteer Appreciation Day on Thursday, April 25 in the Reston United Church basement. Kathy Reid and Keri Vinck welcomed everyone and introduced guest speaker Karen McKinnon of Virden. Karen is a former Restonite, daughter of Gordon and Irene Smeltz. “Some of you will know her through curling, volunteering for Habitat Humanity, wife of former Virden Mayor and MP, Glen McKinnon. But today I would like to introduce her as “Volunteer of the Year” for the town of Virden 2018,” said Vinck. The following is an excerpt from her nomination for this award by Fran Bayliss: Many people will associate McKinnon with Virden’s Habitat for Humanity chapter, as she’s been involved with it since the organization first became active in Virden in 2011. She spearheaded the planning of all the Habitat builds, three structures so far, working closely with Habitat Winnipeg, project managers and subcontractors to keep things running smoothly. What many people may not know about McKinnon is that, beyond the behind-the-scenes organizing, phoning, emailing and scheduling, she also knows her way around the job site.
“There are so many people who volunteer behind the scenes who do no get recognized in a public way,” said McKinnon. “For myself, I was fortunate to have a friend who sent my name to the town for the Citizen of the Year Award. In Virden there must be at least 1500 people who volunteer. Executives for the Lions Club, Ladies of the Royal Purple, about 8 church boards, Youth for Christ, Curling Club executive, Golf Club Executive, SAIL, Ladies of the Legion, volunteers who work for fundraising for the new day care, the spray park, the skate board park, the Viterra, minor hockey, minor ball, figure skating, rummage sale, Canada Day committee. In addition to the executives and boards, there are so many volunteers to work on those groups as well
“We are so fortunate in all our communities to have the many hands that help our programs,” said Vinck. “Today, we celebrate you for BEEing You and everything you do. You are all busy like a hive of bees, and we love having you buzz by, and today we invite you to join us for some nector and sweets.”
Senior’s Helping Hands Board Members include: Carolyn, Brockman, Marilee Smeltz, Evelyn Fotheringham, Sharon Zarn, Val Forsyth, Pat Hamel, Kevin Martin, Tom Campbell, Tom Dickson, Linda Watt and Shirley Paul.
Wilma Boulton made the delicious deserts and Mason Honey Bee donated jars of honey for some of the many door prizes. Brett Robinson worked the door and also told many amusing one-liner bee jokes. Guests were asked to guess the amount of Honey Combs in the jar. Joanne Sauvé was closest with her of 859. The true amount was 873.