Winners from Chilliwack, Surrey, Kamloops and Kelowna to be honoured at awards luncheon
KELOWNA, BC, Oct. 23, 2017 /CNW/ - Recipients of the third annual BC Community Social Services Awards of Excellence, co-presented by the Community Social Services Association of BC (CSSEA) and TELUS, are set to be presented at a luncheon in Kelowna on Wednesday. The awards pay tribute to four outstanding individuals in various stages of their careers who excel in the delivery of social services in British Columbia. The categories include:
- Rising Star: An individual with less than five years' experience in the field who demonstrates early success and great promise as a future leader.
- Hero: Someone who goes the extra mile to make a difference in community social services – someone all staff can look to for inspiration.
- Leader: A formal or informal leader, mentor, or team builder who has brought fresh ideas to the social services field and created positive and lasting change.
- Legend: An individual with 15 or more years of experience in the community social services sector who has made extraordinary contributions to the community and to the sector.
This year's recipients come from diverse communities around the province, including Surrey, Chilliwack, Kelowna and Kamloops. "Individuals from our sector work tirelessly behind the scenes and expect no recognition for their tremendous efforts," says Gentil Mateus, CEO of CSSEA. "They serve BC's vulnerable population, including seniors, children, individuals with developmental disabilities, abused women and new immigrants, so we are delighted to recognize those who have gone above and beyond."
The 2017 award recipients are:
Rising Star - Damian Brennan, Community Support Worker, Chilliwack Society for Community Living - Chilliwack
A newcomer to the community social services sector, Damian has shown immense promise in working with developmentally disabled individuals throughout the Fraser Valley, particularly some who display challenging behaviours. He uses his skills as a professional musician to connect with individuals and devotes much of his own time and resources to support them. Damian is routinely available to family members at off hours, using his personal networks to connect individuals to their community.
Hero - Paulina Weslowski, Community Support Worker, Semiahmoo House Society - Surrey
Paulina found her calling in the community social services sector through her sister, who was also a Semiahmoo House Society (SHS) employee and who passed away. Paulina has been with SHS for the past 12 years and has made an incredible impact on the community by building a sense of multiculturalism and inclusivity. Paulina has made efforts to share her Mexican heritage by becoming involved with the Mexican Migrant Farm Worker program at her church, by facilitating multicultural dance classes and teaching Spanish classes. Paulina is also an active volunteer and has lent her efforts at soup kitchens, a senior facility and thrift shop.
Leader - Kelly Kelland, CEO, Interior Community Services - Kamloops
A respected leader in the community, Kelly is a 'people person' who is as equally well-loved by individuals served as she is by her staff. Serving children, family and youth in the areas of food security, housing and education for 27 years, Kelly nearly doubled Interior Community Service's budget since she took the helm eight years ago and has been instrumental in expanding program offerings in the Kamloops area. She is admired for her personal and caring approach to all members of staff and for her dedication to the guiding principle that all people are cared for and cared about.
Legend - Diane Entwistle, CEO, Okanagan Boys & Girls Clubs - Kelowna
As a lifelong employee of the social services sector, Diane is respected by both staff and the community at large for her mentorship and willingness to share expertise with various organizations, committees and businesses. While she works with Boys and Girls Clubs and other organizations nationally, Diane is most proud of her efforts to cultivate up-and-coming staff through a leadership program she conceived and is actively spearheading. This passionate support for staff and for building a positive work environment is what endears employees to Diane so much.
The Awards of Excellence Luncheon is part of CSSEA's annual general meeting and conference, which is bringing over 200 attendees working in social services to Kelowna.
Congratulations to our remarkable winners.
*On-site coverage of awards luncheon can be arranged. Interviews, short videos and professional photos showcasing each award recipient are also available upon request.
The Community Social Services Employers' Association of BC (CSSEA) provides human resources and labour relations to nearly 200 publicly funded social services employers in British Columbia. CSSEA is the accredited bargaining agent for the community social services sector, negotiating three sector collective agreements governing more than 21,000 unionized social services employees.
SOURCE Community Social Services Employers Association of BC
For further information: Media contact: Doris Sun, Manager of Communications, Cell: 604.319.5010, Email: [email protected], Twitter: @csseabc, Conference Hashtag: #CSSEA2017