The Petawawa Military Family Resource Centre (PMFRC) and Garrison Petawawa Personnel Support Programs (PSP) Volunteer Appreciation Dinner was held on July 27 at the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 517. Awards were given out to four volunteers based on their hard work and merit. From left are Garrison Petawawa Commander Colonel Louis Lapointe, former PMFRC Volunteer Coordinator Christina McFadden, CANEX Assistant Manager Jason Shankland, PMFRC Volunteer of the Year Lisa Coutu, PMFRC Volunteer of Merit Renee Lecuyer, PSP Volunteer of the Year  Bonnie Pegelo, PSP Recreation Coordinator Bailey Hartnell, PMFRC Executive Director Claudia Beswick and Senior Manager PSP Nathan Lane. Missing from the photo is PSP Award of Merit recipient Lori Degrechie. (Photo by Patricia Leboeuf, Petawawa Post)

Personnel Support Programs, PMFRC honour volunteers

By Patricia Leboeuf, Petawawa Post

Posted on Thursday August 8, 2019

In the past year, thousands and thousands of volunteer hours have been dedicated to supporting the Petawawa Military Family Resource Centre (PMFRC) and Garrison Petawawa Personnel Support Programs (PSP) community programs.

These volunteers were recognized for their efforts during a jointly held Volunteer Appreciation Dinner on July 27.  As part of the event, awards were handed out to four deserving recipients whose efforts have been recognized.

The PMFRC Volunteer of the Year Award was given to Lisa Coutu and the PSP Volunteer of the Year Award was given to Bonnie Pegelo. The PMFRC Award of Merit went to Renee Lecuyer while the PSP Award of Merit went to Lori Degrechie.

“You ... are always there to make time in your schedule and take care of the community,” said Garrison Petawawa Commander Colonel Louis Lapointe. “This is extremely important.”

Most of the programs and activities run by both PSP and the PMFRC are volunteer-driven, and they have changed people’s lives through their selflessness.

“I and my entire PMFRC team are inspired whenever we see volunteers. Life is busy with families, jobs, homes and other commitments that you take,” said PMFRC Executive Director Claudia Beswick. “And it is the valuable time that you put into our organization that makes a difference.”

Christina McFadden is the former PMFRC Volunteer Coordinator, whose last official act in that stead was to present the awards to the PMFRC recipients. She ceded her position to Sarah Gunter.

After so much time at the helm of this department, McFadden needed to share how much her time with the volunteers has meant to her, and the impact they’ve had not only on the organization, but on her as well.

“Because of all of you, because of the effort you put into the work you did, all the skills you’ve shared and all the hours you put in,” said McFadden.

“I’ve got to say that I’ve learned something from every single person here,” she added. “Thank you for that.”

Similar sentiments were shared by Senior Manager PSP Nathan Lane, who was grateful to everyone who gives of their time and energy to make PSP clubs and programs as successful as they are. He acknowledged the countless hours volunteers have committed to ensure that things run smoothly, often times behind the scenes and in the shadows.

“You’ve got a passion for what you do,” he said. “No other reason than you love the activity or the sport that you do. So I want to say thank you on behalf of PSP because it takes a lot of folks to provide programs and activities in the community and our military community is no different.”
The event was sponsored by CANEX.