L to R: Mayor Allan Thompson, Neil Morris, Dufferin-Caledon MPP Sylvia Jones
The Town of Caledon handed out awards to outstanding citizens as part of Community Recognition Night on April 25.
“This is our opportunity to celebrate and thank the outstanding people that truly make us #CaledonProud,” said Mayor Allan Thompson. “After more than two years of social distancing ourselves, being able to gather and celebrate in person is a joyful reminder of the power of community and the amazing strength and vibrancy of Caledon.”
Held in conjunction with National Volunteer Week, Community Recognition Night is an annual event that recognizes individuals whose efforts have made significant impact towards the development and advancement of recreational sports, arts and culture, environmental leadership or community and social services.
The highest honour of the night is the Community Champion Award. The recipient is chosen among all the nominees by the Selection Committee based on the significance of their community involvement and years of service.
This year’s Community Champion Award goes to Neil Morris.
Neil Morris has been a member of the Bethell Hospice volunteer team since the very beginning when “Bethell House” opened 12 years ago. Neil has a passion for nature and for caring for people. In addition to his helpful nature and always kind approach, Neil is well-known for his homemade apple jelly and maple syrup, as well as for his diligent work on the health and safety committee, where he helps with training and executing exciting fire drills.
Neil is an extremely dedicated and willing volunteer who participates in various committees as well as covers a weekly shift with the maintenance team at Bethell Hospice. He steps forward to be first on-call if the maintenance coordinator is unavailable.
Neil is enthusiastic, hardworking and always offers a friendly welcome to everyone at the hospice. Family members of residents have shared how they appreciate connecting with Neil both inside the house and out in the gardens. Neil gladly steps in to assist in the kitchen, at reception, or wherever help is needed. Neil even collects apples from hospice trees to make his homemade jelly to sell on behalf of the Bethell Hospice.
During the pandemic Neil took on additional shifts and roles that needed to be filled when COVID-19 restrictions limited many of his fellow volunteers from coming in.
In addition to his work with Bethell Hospice, Neil has been involved in a wide range of volunteer activities in the Town of Caledon.
- Albion Hills Community Farm – volunteer (market garden) and member of board of directors, 2016 to present
- Bird Studies Canada – annual census counts, 2012 to present
- Bruce Trail Conservancy – trail maintenance volunteer, 2000 to present
- Pitsense – environmental study support, 2013/14 and 2019
- Inglewood Farmers Market – volunteer member of market management committee, 2013 to 2014
- Bird Studies Canada – Marsh Monitoring Program, 2011 to 2012
- Peel Region – member of Community Working Group re: Belfountain Road Improvement Environmental Assessment, 2013 to 2014
- Bruce Trail Conservancy and Ontario Heritage Trust – community representative on Cheltenham Badlands Management Committee, 2008 to 2015
- Caledon Environmental Advisory Committee (CEAC) – citizen volunteer advisory committee to Town of Caledon Council- member 2003 to 2012; chair 2007-2010
- Caledon Climate Change Committee – Town of Caledon Climate Change Task Force, community representative – 2019 to 2020
For more information about Community Recognition Night, visit caledon.ca/crn.
About National Volunteer Week: Volunteering is Empathy in Action
Volunteer Canada’s national campaign has been celebrating Canada’s millions of volunteers for 14 years. Since 1977, Volunteer Canada has worked to increase and support volunteerism in Canada and civic participation. This year’s theme is: “Volunteering is Empathy in Action.”
For more information visit volunteer.ca/nvw2022.