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County awards program to honor outstanding seniors
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The Stanislaus County Area Agency on Aging is once again looking to recognize the community service efforts of local seniors through the Senior Awards program. The Agency is calling for nominations of those who have devoted their time to a number of areas, from community service to simply being a good neighbor.


The awards program has been in place for close to 40 years and seeks to acknowledge five recipients, one from each of the county’s Supervisorial Districts, for their outstanding volunteer work, which may include humanitarianism, leadership or political advocacy. Winners of the award will be recognized by the Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors in May during “Older Americans Month.”


Nominated seniors must be age 60 or older and reside in Stanislaus County, and the achievement, accomplishment or service on which the nomination is based must have taken place within the county and on a solely volunteer, unpaid basis. The nominee’s work should also have enhanced the lives of others and brought about change, according to guidelines on the nomination application, as well as inspired others, filled an unmet need and shown dedication and commitment.


On the application, nominators are asked to provide information on the service or activity for which the senior is being nominated for, including the approximate number of years spent volunteering and hours spent per month.


Last year’s winners included: Colleen Charlton, a volunteer Ombudsman for the past six years, advocating for the rights and quality of life for residents in skilled nursing facilities. Charlton also worked with the Boy Scouts Council and was a hospice volunteer; and Mary Burch, who volunteered for over 20 years for the United Domestic Workers, speaking on behalf of workers’ rights. Burch also volunteered her hairdressing services and served on the Board of Directors for Community Continuum College in Turlock, an organization that aims to enhance the quality of life of developmentally disabled adults in Stanislaus County, and fed homeless people in Turlock’s Donnelly Park, among other philanthropic activities.


If a nominee is selected as a winner of the award, in addition to being recognized at the Board of Supervisors meeting with a special resolution, he or she will also receive a commemorative album with certificates from legislators at the local and state level, and in some cases recognition from the President of the United States.


Nomination forms for the 2018 Senior Awards may be obtained by calling the Area Agency on Aging at 209-558-7825 or 1-800-510-2020. The deadline for the nomination forms to be returned is March 5, and they may be mailed to the Stanislaus County Area Agency on Aging, 3500 Coffee Rd., Suite 19, Modesto, CA 95355.