|Back to Home||Feature Article - June 21, 2012|
2012 South Frontenac Volunteers of the Yearby Jeff Green
Photo: L to R: Bob Harding, Margery Smith, Mayor Davison, Norm Roberts, Les Moore
Four community activists: Margery Smith, Bob Harding, Norman Roberts, and Les Moore were named as Volunteers of the Year at a ceremony and reception at the South Frontenac Township offices in Sydenham on Tuesday night, June 19.
Three of them have dedicated countless hours to youth sports and recreation, and the fourth has been involved in the music scene.
Margery Smith – For the past seven years Margery Smith has been a fixture at the Sunbury Hall every Friday night, where she has been the equipment hauler, hall supervisor and Master of Ceremonies at music jam sessions.
In the early days, only a few participants and music fans showed up each week, but the word spread to Loughborough, Kingston, Bedford, Verona, Seeley's Bay and beyond, and the houses have been full each week for years now.
By running 50/50 draws, the jams have raised $1,500 over the years for the Frontenac Old Tyme Music Championship, and more money for the music program at Storrington Public School.
Margery is also a member of the Storrington Retirees Association, in which she has served as a director.
Bob Harding – For the last 23 years, Bob Harding has been involved with Scouts in South Frontenac, and since 2006 he has served as the assistant scout supervisor for the South Frontenac Scouting group.
In 1997 Bob took 10 South Frontenac youth to a Canada Scout Jamboree in Thunder Bay. Two years later, he took six local youth to a World Scout Jamboree in Santiago, Chile.
In addition to his scouting activities, Bob Harding was involved in the early years of the Sydenham Lake Canoe Club, serving as Vice-Commodore for six years and organizing a number of regattas over that time. He received a “Distinguished Service Award” for his 11 years as a volunteer with Ducks Unlimited. He is an avid runner, and has served as a course volunteer at the Sydenham Fall Run for the past four years.
Norm Roberts – When Norm Roberts moved to South Frontenac from Belleville, he brought with him considerable volunteer experience that he had developed in local hockey and baseball.
He joined the Storrington Recreation Committee, and when the committee felt there was a need for a soccer program, Norm stepped in. Along with Harold Pierce, he started up a program that has grown to 450 players from 128 when it was started 16 years ago.
Norm has been the guiding force behind the program's club bursary program, through which proceeds from canteen sales and tournament weekends are funnelled into a fund that provides bursaries to cover playing fees for families that cannot afford them. Over the years 120 kids have benefited from this program.
Les Moore – Les Moore and softball are synonymous for the Hartington/Verona community.
Over 30 years he has coached, played and served as Convenor for the Hartington/Verona Minor Softball Association. Not only did Les pass on his knowledge of softball and his love of the game to numerous players, he was also the driver, picking up his players at their homes, loading them into vans and delivering them home after the game.
He continued on with softball after his two sons, Ray and John, had grown up and moved out. As convenor he spent countless hours on registration, volunteer and player recruitment, offering advice to new coaches, hiring umpires, lining fields, handing out uniforms and ensuring the viability of softball in the local community.
He retired as convenor in 2011 but when you talk to many of the current players and their families, they likely have a story or a fond memory to tell you about Les Moore.
(Editor's note – material for the above article was taken from citations that were prepared for the presentation of the Volunteer of the Year Awards)