April 15-21 is National Volunteer Week in Canada, a time when we recognize the volunteers in our communities and their valuable contributions.
Volunteers across the province selflessly donate their time and money to create positive change in all areas of our communities. They give their time and energy to help others, and at the same time set an example of leadership and community engagement for their peers. On April 25, a ceremony will be held at Government House in Victoria to recognize the recipients of this year’s B.C. Community Achievement Awards. The 34 recipients of this award are individuals who have made outstanding contributions in any area of volunteerism or work in the community.
One of these individuals is Dave Dickson of Williams Lake. Dickson is the safer communities co-ordinator with the Williams Lake RCMP and the director of the Williams Lake Emergency Social Services team. As the safer communities co-ordinator, Dickson has been instrumental in initiating and expanding programs that have reduced crime and increased the safety of our community. He has spearheaded community policing programs such as Business Watch, Downtown Closed Circuit Television, and Operation Red Nose, and he continues to encourage volunteerism through Citizens on Patrol and the Positive Ticketing program, which rewards youth for positive community activity. As director for the ESS team, Dickson works with local volunteers who provide basic services and supplies for individuals and families who have been evacuated from their homes in emergency situations. The ESS team also provides support to large scale search and rescue activities. Dickson is a valuable member of our community, and I am happy to see him receive the recognition he deserves. He is described as a dedicated individual whose work ethic, professionalism, and passion are unrivaled. He sets an outstanding example for his peers, the people he works and volunteers with, and the rest of our community. Volunteerism creates stronger and healthier families and communities, and I hope that we all take the time to recognize and appreciate the hard work of the volunteers in Williams Lake and across B.C.
Donna Barnett is the Liberal MLA for the Cariboo-Chilcotin.