More than a dozen volunteers were honored recently with special recognition awards for their extraordinary service at the Pantry.
The volunteers were presented with The President’s Volunteer Service Awards. The award is given “in recognition and appreciation for their commitment to strengthen our nation and communities through volunteer service.”
Maria Weiss, volunteer coordinator, received the Gold Award for more than 500 hours of service during the year. Silver Awards for 250 – 499 hours of service were given to Dan Davis, chief of inventory, and Molly Kilburn, client services. Bronze Awards for 100 – 249 hours of service were given to Lisa Buccella, Robin Cowper, Amber Deering, Sue Kilcoyne, Jocelyn King, April Provost, Jerry Rinker, Liz Shishkoff, Dave Strittmatter and Sue Strittmatter.
“We are truly fortunate to have such devoted and compassionate volunteers,” said Erin Lynch, Franklin Food Pantry executive director. “We count on ongoing support from so many volunteers in our operation of the Pantry. Their dedication is extraordinary, with many giving us a weekly, and sometimes a daily commitment. They make it possible for us to serve the nearly 500 households in Franklin who count on us.”
Along with the ultimate honor of presidential recognition, award recipients received a personalized certificate, an official pin or medallion, and a congratulatory letter from the president of the United States. Hours are measured over a 12-month period and awards are designated based on cumulative hours.
In addition to the presidential awards, a first-time award for Youth Volunteer of the Year was given to Franklin High School senior Brianna Murray. “Brianna filled a huge need for us,” said Maria Weiss, Pantry volunteer coordinator. “She was my go-to girl when we needed youth volunteers to help us with the Mobile Pantry. She is very independent, and often helped us on short notice. She just made it happen. She is a delight to work with.”
Volunteers donated more than 4,500 hours of service to the Pantry last year. They work directly with clients in the Pantry store, pick up food from local grocers and farms and deliver it to the Pantry, stock and organize shelves, and assist with the Mobile Pantry and Healthy Futures Market. The Pantry relies on more than 70 volunteers each month to fulfill all of the operational responsibilities.
For more information on volunteer opportunities at the Franklin Food Pantry, click here.
About The President’s Volunteer Service Award
The President’s Volunteer Service Award is an initiative of the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) and is administered by Points of Light. Through a shared mission of inspiring more to answer the call to service, the President’s Volunteer Service Award celebrates the impact we can all make in bettering our communities and our world. For more information, visit www.presidentialserviceawards.gov/.
Caption for photo at top of page: Pantry Executive Director Erin Lynch (third from left) presented The President’s Volunteer Service Awards to (left to right) Dan Davis, Molly Kilburn and Maria Weiss for achieving the highest number of volunteer hours at the Pantry.