Ontario Heritage Trust seeks nominations of young heritage volunteers

    TORONTO, Aug. 27 /CNW/ - The Ontario Heritage Trust is seeking
nominations of youth aged 18 and under for its 2007 Young Heritage Leaders
program. The deadline for nominations is Wednesday, October 31, 2007.
    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 built, cultural or
natural heritage preservation in their communities.
    "Conserving Ontario's heritage depends on our young volunteers," said The
Honourable Lincoln M. Alexander, Chairman of the Ontario Heritage Trust.
"Today's youth are the leaders of tomorrow. It will be up to them to make the
decisions that will help to preserve our past and shape our future."
    Young Heritage Leaders nominees will be considered for the new
Lieutenant Governor's Ontario Heritage Award, which recognizes the most
exceptional groups in the built, cultural and natural heritage nomination
categories of the program, and the most outstanding individual nominee across
all categories.
    "Across the province, young people are giving time and energy to
volunteer activities that promote Ontario's heritage," said Caroline Di Cocco,
Minister of Culture. "Celebrating their achievements is a way for local
governments and schools to recognize their contributions to the community."
    Again this year, 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 young person who demonstrates outstanding
leadership in preserving, protecting and promoting Ontario's heritage. The
scholarship, awarded by the Ontario Heritage Trust, is funded 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 advisors 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 a promising young community leader further
his or her education," 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 both
individuals and our communities."
    The 2007 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. Education, community, youth and heritage groups should contact their
local council or school about proposed nominations, which must be endorsed by
the mayor, reeve, warden, regional chair, chief, council president or
    Examples of voluntary activities eligible for recognition through the
program 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.
    Since Young Heritage Leaders was introduced in 2000, more than
3,000 young people have been recognized for their local heritage preservation
activities. This program complements the Ontario Heritage Trust's successful
Heritage Community Recognition Program, which recognizes adult volunteers for
contributions to heritage conservation.

    The Ontario Heritage Trust - the province's lead heritage agency - is
dedicated to identifying, preserving, protecting and promoting Ontario's
built, cultural and natural heritage for the benefit of present and future

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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,
Communication Services, Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life,
Telephone: (204) 946-7705, E-mail: marlene.klassen@gwl.ca

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