Kingston to Honour Outstanding Citizens with Civic Awards

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Kingston City Hall

The City of Kingston’s Civic Awards recognize the outstanding contributions made by residents to the community.

This year’s recipients, whose dedicated efforts positively impact the lives of Kingstonians, will be honoured at the Canada Day Civic Ceremony at noon on Sunday, July 1 on the steps of City Hall.

“We live in an amazing city, thanks in large part to the incredible volunteers we have throughout Kingston” says Mayor Paterson. “It’s always an honour to recognize some of the outstanding volunteers in the community and I look forward to celebrating our award winners at this year’s Canada Day Civic Ceremony!”

FIRST CAPITAL HONOURABLE ACHIEVEMENT AWARD

Many will know Emilio Frometa as a captain on the Queen’s Gaels football team. Some may know he’s done this while studying for his Masters of Industrial Relations at Queen’s University.

Others know him as the founder and executive director of the Queen’s Autism Mentorship Program that pairs varsity athletes with local youth who have Autism Spectrum Disorder to foster friendships and assist with building skills. They meet weekly and hang out for a few hours playing sports, having fun and doing school work.

The program also offers inclusive and sensory-safe events to enjoy with their program participants and their families. Emilio saw the need, recruited volunteers and created this program, which has paired more than 40 student athletes with 80 youth and is now supported by Autism Ontario.

He hopes to expand the program to other universities across the province.

Jason Trueman is the volunteer race director for the Kingston’s Kids’ Triathlon. First held in 2015, it attracted 200 athletes aged 4 to 15. This past year, more than 400 young athletes competed in this swimming, cycling and running race at the Memorial Centre.

The event also attracts hundreds of youth from outside Kingston, offering economic benefits for Kingston’s hotel and tourism industry.

Coordinating the more than 100 volunteers needed to support this event requires Jason to put in hundreds of hours a year. He has also engaged local businesses to act as race sponsors.

Most importantly, Jason sets the tone for the event so that every young athlete is made to feel included and like they are competing in a world-class sporting event.

Jason’s four years of dedicated hard work has made Kingston’s Kids’ Triathlon a remarkably successful and positive sporting experience for kids and one with innumerable healthy benefits to young athletes and the wider community.

MAYOR’S AWARD FOR YOUTH VOLUNTEERISM – GRADE 5 TO 8 CATEGORY

Abigail Harrett’s strength, wit and personality shine in her roles as a volunteer for Change for Families in Need and Home Free Farm. Her Change for Families team mates have come to rely on her involvement at the events they host. They have noticed her empathy for others and her ability to advocate have grown over the years along with her confidence.


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Her work at Home Free Farm has involved countless hours cleaning stalls, tending to animals and doing other hands-on work around the farm. Abigail helps wherever she is needed whenever she is called upon. Her volunteer work has shown her to be an independent and confident young leader.

MAYOR’S AWARD FOR YOUTH VOLUNTEERISM – GRADE 9 TO 12 CATEGORY

Scouting enthusiast, Alex Abicht, has been instrumental in re-establishing the Kingston Centre Scouts troop in the city’s north-end. This 2017 Chief Scout Award-winner is the Loyalist Area Youth Commissioner and attends meetings of many scout troops in the area where his love for getting outdoors to swim, camp, boat, hunt and fish make him a wonderful role model for younger scouts.

Last year, he was recognized for his work with a Commendation from Governor General David Johnston, which noted his confidence, maturity and positive attitude. This year he’s received a Duke of Edinburgh’s International Silver Award.

Beyond his dedicated scouting work, Alex is an Honour Roll student, a rower, saxophone player, Bronze Cross swimmer, and the “Most Sportsmanlike Player” on his Church Athletic League St. John’s hockey team.

MAYOR’S AWARD FOR YOUTH VOLUNTEERISM – POST-SECONDARY CATEGORY

A Teacher Candidate at Queen’s University, Yaara Docrat is deeply involved in many efforts using the arts to help transform the lives of students.

Last year, she organized for the nine members of Busty and the Bass to play for and mentor Grade 7 and 8 students at J. G. Simcoe Public School.

She has volunteered for the Canadian Network for Arts and Learning helping add to the Map of Arts & Learning, creating opportunities for artists to bring workshops to schools. She led the new Kingston Youth4Music hub in the first Virtual Summit for Music Education hosted by The Coalition of Music Education.

Based out of the Tett Centre, the summit brought youth from six time zones together to talk about music education. In May, Yaara planned “School Invasions” at Cataraqui Woods Elementary School and St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School bringing music, song and dance to 700 children.

Well-loved by her students and peers, Yaara spends countless hours planning these inspiring events working with organizations such as Juvenis Festival, Martello Alley and Youth Diversion to educate herself and motivate youth to strive for and achieve their goals.


Release source: City of Kingston
Photo: Wikimedia Commons / Laslovarga (cc)