Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Awards, Rewards, Recognition - April 19, 2013

Some people have personal ambition, on the other hand, some people live their lives in service of others, and a greater cause.  So just how does one award, reward or recognize people for their generosity of spirit? We take example from leaders around us.
As Canada's Governor General is the representative of the Queen of England on North Amerian soil, the influence of the Queen's 60th Anniversary Diamond Jubilee Award is among the most celebrated awards among Canadian citizens.  Without Royal patronage, Canada may have potentially taken another course through history.  Whether actively, or through her network of agents, the influence of the Monarch with a wholistic vision of the world has indeed shaped our experience here.  Through the effects of a democratic, civil society, we are called to take part, take responsibility, and create a place that is bigger, better and more enriching than ourselves. Some consider Canada among the most respected nations for precise these reasons, for its serious committment to becoming the best "homeland" possible - I among them.  
Over Canada's rather short nationhood, Canadian communities have grown, and been shaped the efforts of her citizens.  But "community" doesn't just happen.  Through the contributions of many, we have evolved into a generous, forward thinking, inclusive society that embraces the best parts of its individual components.  Of course that involves grassroots community builders, and community leadership, vision and dogged perseverance in the face of doubters.  Big vision people take pleasure in meeting challenges, making seemingly small gains that accumulate drop by drop, for every droplet eventually meets with others, creating a wave of possibilities.  The individuals being honored at the Diamond Jubilee Awards ceremony to be held in Calgary on April 19, 2013 are examples of just that kind of leadership.  .   

I met Mike Hantzch through my experiece at St. Vladimir's Sadochok, when our children were little and our ambitions for them involved a Ukrainian linguistic enrichment.  A group formed around this idea - Calgary Parents for Ukrainian Education - and we coaslesced around an idea of promoting Ukrainian bilingual schools to our public school boards.  Public schooling took some complicated turns at the time - our proposals were not welcomed.  So Mike threw his considerable passion for youth programming into high gear - through PLAST Ukrainian Scouts here in Calgary.  And of course there are many more accolades for this already recognized UCC Alberta Hetman Award recipient.   

Halia Wilson is another equally committed, soft spoken but stalward community builder.  A communicator, she has developed strong ties in SUM Ukrainian Youth across Canada and in the Ukrainian community abroad.  She is an includer, a communicator, a promoter and widely embraces diversity.  For the entire time I have known her, she has quietly but effectively promoted the Ukrainian idea, graciously welcoming everyone she meets. Her generosity of spirit is felt here among her professional peers, and in Calgary's Ukrainian community.  From promotions for youth programs to bandura, music, film and the arts, Halia's impressive vitae has already gained her the UCC Alberta Hetman Award too.   

Congratulations to these wonderful people on the recognition presented to them this April 19, 2013 through Canada's Diamond Jubilee Award.  From the hand of Queen Elizabth II, through the hands of Canada's Governor General, through the hands of Ukrainian Canadian Congress National President Paul Grod to Calgary, not only are they being recognized individually, but as members of their respective communities here in Calgary as well.  Leadership, community builders, peacemakers, kindlers of the fire at the ancestral hearth, their promotion of and contribution to the culture of our great city, and the Ukrainian idea,  we thank you!! 

The Ukrainian Canadian Professional and Business Association of Canada (Calgary Branch)graciously invites you to a ceremony and wine and cheese reception in honor of these recipients of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Award on  Friday, April 19, at 7 PM at the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary church hall.  For further information, tickets and to RSVP contact 403-670-5477  or to admin@ucpbacalgary.org


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