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Salvation Army recognizes volunteers, partners

By Staff | Mar 27, 2009

The Salvation Army presented awards to outstanding supporters of the agency Thursday at the Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre in Fort Myers.
Salvation Army staff and friends gathered to honor and showcase volunteers and community partners who give of their time, talent and resources to help others.
In 2008, more than 7,000 volunteers reinforced the ranks of the Salvation Army’s small staff to give back to those in need in the community.
“We could not do what we do without the dedicated volunteers who give of their time and service to help the many people in need. Their commitment to the Army is a blessing and we will be forever grateful to them,” said Maj. Art Penhale, corps officer for the Lee and Hendry counties’ Salvation Army.

Top awards
The top honors presented to outstanding groups and individuals for their outstanding service in 2008 included:

Group of the Year (Lee County): Bayside Estates
— For devoting themselves fully and wholeheartedly to helping with the Christmas Cheer application process and assisting shoppers at the Toyshop

Business of the Year (Lee County): Burt Hill/Pollock Kreig Architects Inc.
— Provided the architectural drawings and rendering for the newest Family Store at no charge and other services throughout the year at no cost to the Army

Disaster Volunteer of the Year (Lee County): Walt and Beverly Ryschkow
— Driving the canteen and representing The Salvation Army at events throughout the county
— Setting up shop to serve hot dogs and sodas and consistently giving the best of their service

Volunteer of the Year (Lee County): Joe and Nilda Monks
— Volunteered their time to the Army with enthusiasm and smiles for many years
— Served on a Disaster Relief Team in Texas during the aftermath of Hurricane Ike
— Coordinated a Kettle site in North Fort Myers
— Partner with their neighbors for the Day of Caring fund-raiser to ensure local families have holiday turkeys

Volunteer of the Year (Hendry County): Marcia Carter and Helping Hands Ministry
— Single-handedly provides hundreds of children’s toys during Christmas
— In 2008, served 523 children and 168 families
— Started her own ministry from the great mission called Helping Hands
— Has used her hands and her heart to serve hundreds of children and families through the years

Volunteer Bell Ringer (Hendry County): Sweet Love
— Volunteers to focus on others and ignore personal struggles
— Was one of the first to sign up this season
— Rang bells at Ace Hardware for 150 hours

Advisory Board Member of the Year: Charles Basinait
— Valued member of the Advisory Board for more than nine years
— Passionately embraces the mission of the Army
— Serves a strong leadership role as chair of the Property Committee

The Salvation Army also recognized the tireless volunteers who donate their time and talents throughout the year making it possible to carry out the mission of the Army.
The awards ceremony for The Salvation Army takes place annually. Volunteers can participate in a variety of activities at The Salvation Army such as working with the Meals with Compassion program, stocking and sorting cans at the food pantry, assisting with mailings, helping with disaster work and ringing bells at Christmas.
Those interested in volunteering to help others through The Salvation Army can call 278-1551.