Local agencies and outposts are seeking nominations for a wide spectrum of awards in the next two months, honoring individuals and businesses making a difference in their communities.
CY AW SHUCKS AWARD
Connecting Youth is now accepting nominations for its annual Aw Shucks award, which recognizes volunteers and businesses consistently supporting young people. CY is a community-based organization that works to create a safe environment for youth.
“There are unsung heroes in the community who are supporting youth in really vital and unique ways who don’t always get noticed or recognized,” said Christine Lloyd-Newberry, CY program director.
Nominees should live or work in Williston, St. George, Charlotte, Hinesburg or Shelburne. The nominee should have “a record of success as a volunteer in helping young people and families … (and) gone above and beyond in their efforts to help create a safe and healthy CY community,” according to the award description.
Since the award began 17 years ago, CY has honored more than 200 community volunteers.
The deadline for nominations is Feb. 15. The Aw Shucks awards will be presented on the evening of April 8 at Champlain Valley Union High School.
Lloyd-Newberry said CY has received approximately 20 nominations so far. The organization will select two award-winners from each town, as well as one business.
“It’s always a tough choice,” she said.
Lloyd-Newberry encouraged community members to nominate their peers.
“It’s a wonderful way to be able to recognize the people (about whom) we all say, ‘Oh my goodness, how do you do that, you are such an asset to our community,’” she said.
To submit a nomination, visit http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/AwShucksNominations. Alternatively, email firstname.lastname@example.org with the name of the nominee or business,
his or her contact information (address, phone and email),
your name and contact information and
a description of why the person or business should receive an Aw Shucks award.
OUTSTANDING SENIOR VOLUNTEERS
Senior volunteers can be recognized with the Salute to Senior Service program, which honors the contributions of adults 65 and older who give at least 15 hours a month of volunteer service.
Nominations will be accepted from Feb. 1 through March 31. State winners will be selected by popular vote from April 15 to April 30. From those state winners, a panel of senior care experts will pick the national Salute to Senior Service honoree.
Home Instead, Inc. will donate $500 to each of the state winners’ favorite nonprofit organizations and post their stories on the Salute to Senior Service Wall of Fame. In addition, $5,000 will be donated to the national winner’s nonprofit charity of choice.
“We all know seniors who do so much for our community,” said Patrice Thabault, owner of the Home Instead Senior Care’s local office, serving Chittenden and surrounding counties, in a press release. “These silent heroes give selflessly, expecting nothing in return. And yet, their contributions often make a difference not only to the organizations they serve, but in changing how the public views growing older.”
To complete and submit a nomination form online and to view the contest’s official rules, visit www.salutetoseniorservice.com. Completed nomination forms also can be mailed to Salute to Senior Service, P.O. Box 285, Bellevue, NE 68005.
ENVIRONMENTAL MERIT AWARDS
EPA is now accepting nominations for the 2013 Environmental Merit Awards, which recognize environmental achievements during the past year.
These regional awards have been given out annually since EPA was created in 1970. Past recipients have included scientists, community activists, business representatives, public officials and other individuals committed to preserving the environment.
An independent EPA panel will select the winners based on the following criteria: long-term effects on the environment; ability to address an environmental problem or need; collaboration with others; ability of the program or accomplishments to be widely shared; clarity and effectiveness of the presentation; and promotion of innovative ideas or techniques.
The awards are given in four categories: individual; business, industry, trade, and professional organization; local, state or federal government; and environmental, community or non-profit organization. Awards are also given under a lifetime achievement category.
The deadline for nominations is March 1. Awards winners will be invited to a ceremony this spring in Boston.
For nomination forms for EPA New England environmental merit awards, visit www.epa.gov/ne/ra/ema.
— Stephanie Choate, Observer staff