The Cape Breton Regional Municipality presented two special volunteer awards at its April Council meeting this week.
The Cape Breton Kiwanis Golden K Club was named the recipient of the Gary McDonald Memorial Award, in recognition of an Outstanding Community Project. The club was incorporated in 1984, and its membership exceeds 60. The sole fundraiser for the club is a weekly TV bingo in partnership with Eastlink TV on Channel 10, with club members running the game each week. All proceeds from the bingo game are distributed to various groups and organizations in the community, and to special projects that the club becomes involved in. Ongoing projects of the Golden K include acting as greeters and providing information at the Cape Breton Regional Hospital, and at the Joan Harriss Cruise Pavilion for cruise ship guests; visiting four local nursing homes, treating residents to refreshments and entertainment; providing a free blood pressure clinic at the Mayflower Mall; delivering Meals on Wheels, transporting meals to the VON Adult Day Care Centre; assisting Sydney Kiwanis Club with the Kiwanis Music Festival; assisting the Salvation Army with its Kettle program; assisting the United Commercial Travellers with its skating jamboree for elementary school children; providing volunteers and financial assistance for breakfast programs for two local schools; partnering with the Cape Breton Firefighters Burn Unit to provide bath thermometers for all new mothers in Cape Breton; providing teddy bears to children hospitalized in the local hospitals; funding two bursaries to each of the four high schools in the local area; provide funding and volunteers for “K” kids program at a local elementary school; provide funding and volunteers for the Key Leadership Program; and helping with transportation requirements for local events, such as the Police Chiefs Convention, the Canada 55 Plus Games, the Quebec Hockey Draft, ECMA awards, etc. The Golden K is also active with the Roots of Empathy Program (anti-bullying) with volunteers, expertise and funding ($47,000); Enhancement to Life Programs for Seniors; funding to the Cape Breton Regional Hospital, especially the neo-natal unit ($80,000); plus it provides financial support ($16,000) towards a Northside drop-in centre for disadvantaged children and a program that helps young people at-risk.
Harry Henderson was named the recipient of the Anne Holland Memorial Award, in recognition of an Outstanding Community Volunteer. Harry’s volunteer years started in the 1940s, where he was active with in the YMCA Leader Corps, and conducted gym classes. Harry has been active in the Sydney Y’s Men for close to 60 years and served in all club positions, some more than once, including club president. He held the position of District Governor for Cape Breton/Newfoundland and as Regional Director for the Maritimes Region. Harry is the longest active member of the Sydney Y’s Men’s Club and remains active in all club activities. Harry has been an active member of the First United Church for over 50 years, taking on various leadership roles, plus he sang in the church choir since the 1950s. He was active in the ski community, and was active when the local ski hill was first in Barrachois, then in Coxheath. He was on the founding committee of Ski Ben Eoin. He was a member of the Ski Patrol in the 1950s, and served as secretary-treasurer for the Coxheath Ski Club. He’s still skiing at Ski Ben Eoin, offering skiing tips to beginners. He was also on the committee that organized the Dobson Yacht Club, where he was very active in snipe sailing. He was the Commodore at the Dobson Yacht Club in 1954. Over the years, Harry and his wife Muriel were both active in the Sydney Forks Recreation Association, helping organize events, raise funds, and work on the centre’s maintenance. Besides his municipal, regional and national volunteer accomplishments, Harry has also served as a great neighbourhood volunteer, where the neighbourhood children learned how to ride their bicycles on his driveway, the only paved one in the neighbourhood. Countless number of Sydney Forks children learned some of their best swim moves at the little dock on Harry’s property. Harry is known for his sport accomplishments, and has been honoured by the Cape Breton Sport Hall of Fame for his sniping accomplishments: Maritime Titles – 1955 and 1956, Canadian Championship – 1961 and 1963, and represented Canada in the Western Hemisphere Championships in Nassau and Bermuda, won the World Championship in New York in 1961. Harry collects for the Canadian Diabetes Association, which he has been doing for 30 years.
The CBRM Volunteer Awards presentation is held in conjunction with the annual Provincial Volunteer Week celebration. For more information on the CBRM Special Volunteer Awards, contact the CBRM Recreation Department at 563-5510.