The honour of being recognized

Don't worry when you are not recognized,

The people who are the most deserving of recognition are the one’s looking for the least amount. Recognition is a wonderful thing, it makes people feel great about all they’ve accomplished.

When it comes to community giving, people are motivated by a personal connection to a cause or a desire to give back. Many businesses take an active interest in the community by supporting causes that align with their business priorities, their customers and their employees. Awards are a way to show gratitude for all the hard work and dedication that volunteers and supporters bring to every aspect of a strong, healthy community.

Community awards are often interwoven into the local business awards by the Boards of Trade or Chambers of Commerce. In fact, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce started the Community Builder Award which looks for success in a business yielding the greatest social return on investment. SC Johnson and Son was the 2014 winner for their successful partnerships with several organizations in Brantford, where their production facility and corporate offices are located. Their support over the last 94 years contributed to social, health, cultural, environmental and educational organizations and programs.

The Order of Ontario and the Order of Canada are both high public honours that individuals receive in recognition of their outstanding achievement and dedication to the community. Recipients are leaders in their field and are often committed to community service or philanthropy.

In the case of the Order of Ontario, 26 people were named into the Order in February including a local Mississauga businessman, James Murray who has supported numerous causes over his lifetime from health and education to pubic services and the arts. He embraced a lifelong community giving from a young age, having received the Outstanding Young Citizen of Mississauga award.

James Murray

James Murray  Photo credit Mississauga.com file photo

More recently, on Canada Day, The Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, named 100 new appointments to the Order of Canada, some of whom have significant philanthropic contributions. Of note is Paul J. Hill of Regina, Saskatchewan, who is helping disadvantaged children achieve educational excellence to help them get accepted to university.

Order of Canda photo

Order of Canada insignias  Photo credit Governor General’s website

I also found Lawrence Hill’s comments about the honour of being named to the Order of Canada with CBC radio inspiring. He emphasised the value of his volunteer experience with Crossroads International in different African countries. He advises young people that

“if you really want to make your life exciting and rich and interesting… think about volunteer work overseas and you’ll never regret having done it.”

His volunteer experience lead to the writing of his acclaimed novel Book of Negroes and other novels partially set in Africa. He was named to the Order of Canada for his writing to tell the stories of Canada’s black community and advocacy work on behalf of women and girls in Africa.

Last but certainly not least, I want to highlight the Governor General’s Caring Canadian Award. This award is to recognize individuals who volunteer their time to help others and to build a smarter and more caring nation. The award highlights the compassionate volunteers who are an important part of our national social identity. The stories of the people who have won this award are amazing, including the efforts of two young girls Julianne, age 7, and Rachel, age 9, of Newfoundland. They have raised $30,000 for the Janeway Children’s Health & Rehabilitation Centre by making and selling crafts for the last three years.

Moss girls GG Caring Cdn award

The Honourable David Johnson, Julianne and Rachel Moss, and their father  Photo credit: My Giving Moment.ca

Julianne and Rachel make it look so easy to raise funds, but we know it’s a lot of hard work and commitment. They are truly deserving of this great honour.

Do you know someone who is deserving of any of these awards? Think about the pride they would feel if you took the initiative to nominate them.

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