Call for nominations to Young Heritage Leaders program



    TORONTO, Sept. 8 /CNW/ - The Ontario Heritage Trust is seeking
nominations of youth aged 18 and under for its 2008 Young Heritage Leaders
program. The deadline for nominations is Friday, October 31, 2008.
    Through this annual program, municipal councils, regional councils, First
Nation band councils, Métis community councils and schools can recognize local
youth for significant voluntary contributions to preserving, protecting and
promoting local heritage.
    "Engaging youth in conservation is critical to ensuring the future of our
heritage," said The Honourable Lincoln M. Alexander, Chairman of the Ontario
Heritage Trust. "Through Young Heritage Leaders, we are proud to have
recognized more than 3,300 young people for their contributions to preserving
Ontario's heritage."
    The 2008 Young Heritage Leaders program guidelines and nomination form
are available at www.heritagetrust.on.ca. Individuals and project groups are
eligible for nomination in the categories of built, cultural and natural
heritage conservation. Nominees to the program will also be considered for the
Lieutenant Governor's Ontario Heritage Award, which recognizes the most
exceptional groups in each category and the most outstanding individual
nominee across all categories.
    "I encourage schools and communities to take this opportunity to
recognize young heritage volunteers who help preserve, protect and promote
Ontario's heritage," said Aileen Carroll, Minister of Culture. "They play a
very important role in preserving our heritage for future generations and
helping to maintain the economic development that is attracted to and
sustained by unique heritage assets."
    Once again, the Ontario Heritage Trust and the program sponsors -
Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life - will award a $2,000 scholarship
for post-secondary education to the most outstanding individual nominee. The
scholarship is funded by the Ontario Heritage Trust and through The Key to
Giving(TM) - the national corporate citizenship program of Great-West Life,
London Life and Canada Life. Through The Key to Giving, the companies
contribute to non-profit, charitable and community organizations across the
country to address health and wellness, education, social services, arts and
culture, and civic initiatives. The Key to Giving program also supports the
volunteer involvement of staff and financial security advisers in their
efforts to meet the needs of the communities in which they live and work.
    "We're pleased to continue our support of the Ontario Heritage Trust's
Young Heritage Leaders, and to help further the education of a promising young
community leader," said Jan Belanger, Assistant Vice-President, Community
Affairs for Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life. "Recognizing and
encouraging the achievements of young people is essential to helping them
foster their leadership skills, now and for the future. We're proud to support
this type of initiative - one that has a sustained, positive impact on
individuals and our communities."
    To submit a Young Heritage Leaders nomination, education, community,
youth and heritage groups should contact their local council or school.
Nominations must be endorsed by the mayor, reeve, warden, regional chair,
chief, council president or principal. Examples of voluntary activities
eligible for recognition include: volunteering at a museum, historical site,
conservation area or parkland; developing exhibits, collections, websites or
publications about local history; fundraising or hands-on work to support the
restoration of a heritage building; participating in historical re-enactments
or archaeological digs; preserving natural heritage sites or heritage gardens;
and involvement in activities that preserve or promote cultural diversity,
including First Nations, Métis, Franco-Ontarian heritage or others.

    The Ontario Heritage Trust is an agency of the Government of Ontario
dedicated to identifying, preserving, protecting and promoting Ontario's
built, cultural and natural heritage for the benefit of present and future
generations.

    
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For further information:

For further information: Catrina Colme, Marketing and Communications
Coordinator, Ontario Heritage Trust, Telephone: (416) 325-5074, E-mail:
catrina.colme@heritagetrust.on.ca; Marlene Klassen, Assistant Vice-President,
Communications, Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life, Telephone: (204)
946-7705, E-mail: marlene.klassen@gwl.ca


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