Ontario Medal For Young Volunteers: 2012 Recipients
Established in 1998, the Ontario Medal for Young Volunteers honours youth between the ages of 15 and 24 for being leaders and innovators. The medals are presented by the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario.
The six recipients of the 2012 Ontario Medal for Young Volunteers are:
Meaghan Walker of Toronto who, since the age of 11, has been helping Ontarians with vision disabilities. She founded and runs SIGHT - Student's Initiative Giving Hope Together - to raise money for the Canadian National Institute for the Blind. Last year she raised $2,000.
Victoria Edwards of Victoria Harbour has been an active conservationist and outdoor enthusiast since she was 10. As a member of the Georgian Bay Get Outdoors Club, she's built nesting boxes for ducks and other birds, planted over 4,000 trees and has worked to restore the stream in Maggie's Creek. She also teaches archery with the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters Provincial Get Outdoors Youth Program.
James Farry of Dunnville promotes the importance of organic and sustainable farming and is the backbone of The Shared Harvest Community Farm and Educational Centre. Here he supports the Let's Eat Right Dunnville Program, which provides fresh produce to families and the local food bank.
Janette Hammell of Dobbinton teaches kids the importance of agriculture and sustainability. She was Bruce County's Queen of the Furrow in 2010 - a title bestowed on her by the Bruce County Plowmen's Association. She also coordinates the local volunteer-run soccer league, which now has close to 300 participants of all ages.
Simon Harmgardt of Oakville is a versatile entertainer, fundraiser and philanthropist. He raises money with his one-man juggling act, is the co-founder of Teens Organizing Local Entertainment for Seniors, and provides bicycles to low-income families and Third World communities through Life Cycle, a program he created.
Rebecca Linder of Rockwood overcame addiction and homelessness and now helps youth in her community. She's volunteered with Wyndam House Home for Girls' Peer 2 Lead program and today sits on the Steering Committee for STEPS - Support through Engagement in Programming and Sport.