Source: 4-H Canada news release
Earlier this week, 4-H Canada members and supporters celebrated the 4-H Canada Leadership Awards, taking the organization’s signature event virtual for the first time to recognize the outstanding contributions of 4-H youth, leaders, alumni, and champions.
Attendees took part in an experience hosted by Rick Mercer which was rich in storytelling, celebrating the 4-H movement across Canada and showcasing the achievements of individuals who champion 4-H values. The event also highlighted the resilience of 4-H members, volunteers, and programs throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and celebrated the strength of the 4-H community across Canada.
The Leadership Awards also serves as an important fundraiser for the organization and has grown every year since it began in 1913. This year’s virtual event was no exception, setting ticket sales and fundraising records, with more than 600 tickets sold for viewers to enjoy the event from the comfort of their own homes, and over $40,000 raised for the Canadian 4-H Foundation to ensure the future of 4-H programming across Canada.
“While we couldn’t gather together this year, we were excited by the way in which the 4-H community still came together to recognize the achievements of some truly incredible 4-H youth, volunteers, alumni, and champions,” says Shannon Benner, 4-H Canada’s CEO. “The support for this event is an incredible reflection of the support that exists for the 4-H mission to empower youth to become responsible, caring, and contributing leaders that effect positive change in the world around them.”
The evening recognized four young people who are blazing trails and creating positive change in the world-Veronika Parkinson, Matthew Sterling, Amanda McGillivray, Morgan Hussey-the recipients of 4-H Canada’s Leadership Excellence Award of Distinction (L.E.A.D.).
A highlight of the evening was the announcement of high-profile mentors to each of the L.E.A.D. scholars: Ryan Hreljac, founder of the Ryan’s Well Foundation; Warren Bills, a 4-H alumnus and CEO – Simplifier of Convergence Growth Inc.; Senator Stanley Kutcher, a leading psychiatrist and professor; and Elly Vandenberg, Director of the Global Office Canada for the United Nations World Food Programme, an organization just recently awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
The night also honoured Carol Williams, a volunteer leader who dedicates herself to empowering youth through 4-H programs, the Honourable Lyle Vanclief, an alumnus who served as former Minister of Agriculture and who has empowered 4-H youth leadership through the Lyle and Sharon Vanclief Leadership Endowment Fund, as well as two individuals, Duane Bristow, and Nancy Orr, whose years of commitment and service have unquestionably advanced the 4-H movement in Canada.
The 4-H Canada Leadership Awards would not have been possible without Award Sponsors, CN, The Co-operators, FCC, and Glacier FarmMedia; Auction Sponsor, John Deere; and 4-H Champions.
To learn more about the 4-H Canada Leadership Awards, please visit 4-h-canada.ca/4hawards.