Abbotsford heroes honoured at awards ceremony

Abbotsford is a city filled with community heroes, and on Thursday night their efforts were celebrated.

The inaugural City of Heroes awards ceremony took place at W.J. Mouat Secondary School as four schools and 21 individuals received recognition for their efforts to make Abbotsford a “city of character.”

The event, sponsored by Thrifty Foods, Mouat and the Abbotsford News, was hosted in conjunction with the Abbotsford City of Character.

The City of Character movement began in 2006 when three local school representatives went to a character conference in Toronto. In 2011, community leaders in Abbotsford established six values, followed by an official Abbotsford Character Council.

The six values are respect, responsibility, integrity, empathy, courage and service.

The City of Heroes awards honours groups and individuals that promote those values.

The four school awards included:

Elementary School Project Award – Mt. Lehman Elementary School

The school was recognized for its Character Project and Club which includes each classroom presenting a different character value at assemblies throughout the year. The project is an effort to educate the student population about the importance of character.

The award is sponsored by MSA Ford.

Middle School Project Award – Chief Dan George Middle School

After attending last month’s youth symposium on character, a group of Chief Dan George students came up with the concept of a “Nerd Day.” The event encouraged other students to act with good character and encourage their peers that it’s OK to study and that being smart is cool.

The award is sponsored by School District #34.

High School Project Award – Rick Hansen Secondary School

Students at Rick Hansen have developed a school newspaper. The project allows students to share their thoughts, ideas and interests with their peers.

The award is sponsored by MSA Ford.

Independent Educational Project Award – Abbotsford Youth Commission

The commission’s youth council has been recognized for creating a series of bullying awareness seminars. The group presented the seminars to middle schools throughout Abbotsford.

This award is sponsored by Abbotsford Community Services Recycling.

Each school will receive a plaque and $200 to help fund their programs.

An additional 21 awards were given out to individuals who have shown leadership and character in this community.

The list of recipients include:

  • Loree Mann
  • Gail Smit
  • Brian Lee
  • Rien & Katherine Westendorp
  • Lee Graham
  • Franke Roffel
  • Toni Goode
  • Dene Senft
  • Riley Payne
  • Megan Hartle
  • David Collins
  • Nathan Fehr
  • Sekoia Laliberte
  • Leslie Betker
  • Colin McGuinness
  • Steve Gill
  • Jim Calamunce
  • Pat Mullaney
  • Stella Manuel
  • Jack Siebert
  • Donna Elliott

For more on the City of Heroes, watch for a special section in a coming edition of the Abbotsford News.

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