St. Thomas's Debbie Hamilton receives Community Achievement Award for outstanding community involvement

ST. THOMAS, ON, Feb. 25, 2016 /CNW/ - Debbie Hamilton of St. Thomas has received The Co-operators Community Achievement Award for her outstanding community involvement. The award was created to honour Co-operators financial advisors who demonstrate outstanding support for the community in which they work, both through financial aid and volunteerism.

Debbie Hamilton, The Co-operators financial advisor in St. Thomas, was named the Community Achievement Award winner for the Central Ontario region. With a history of volunteerism decades long, Debbie's passion of helping people feel empowered is one that she has instilled in her staff. Debbie and her team are involved in local women's issues, anti-poverty initiatives including sitting on the coalition for Bridges out of Poverty, employment services, anti-bullying programs and helping the local food bank.

"I am fascinated by people, hearing their stories, and finding out what makes them tick," said Hamilton. "Stress, worry, and anxiety can keep people stuck.  I try to use my business contacts to help people obtain employment and to understand their lives can be different.  I help them, cut them a bit of slack, as they try to get back on their feet."

Putting her words into action, Debbie purchased a house in 2014 which is used to provide affordable accommodations to people in need in her community. And, she recently introduced Pay It Forward yoga where instead of charging for classes, participants are asked to contribute to a local charity. Debbie also makes her yoga classes available to young and troubled teens struggling with addiction and anxiety.

Debbie was one of the creators and leaders of Kindness…Run With It, an event that raises awareness of bullying prevention and promotes kindness. She is a member of the Safe Communities Coalition and serves on the EAT 2 LEARN partnership committee. Community members describe Debbie as compassionate, open-minded, energetic, passionate, and with an enthusiasm that is contagious.

As a co-op, The Co-operators adheres to the seven international co-operative principles, one of which is "concern for community." The organization's 500 financial advisors are instrumental in converting this principle into action in communities across Canada.  Hamilton's genuine concern for the well-being of her community, as evidenced by her record of involvement and support for local causes, embodies this principle.

About The Co-operators:
The Co-operators Group Limited is a Canadian-owned co-operative with more than $40 billion in assets under administration. Through its group of companies it offers home, auto, life, group, travel, commercial and farm insurance, as well as investment products. The Co-operators is well known for its community involvement and its commitment to sustainability. The Co-operators is listed among the 50 Best Employers in Canada by Aon Hewitt; Corporate Knights' Best 50 Corporate Citizens in Canada; and the Top 50 Socially Responsible Corporations in Canada by Sustainalytics and Maclean's magazine. For more information visit www.cooperators.ca.

SOURCE The Co-operators

For further information: Debbie Hamilton, 519-633-3600


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