December 5th is International Volunteer Day and the Grande Prairie Volunteer Services Bureau marked it with its annual awards ceremony. An appreciation breakfast was held at the Golden Age Centre to celebrate the contributions of all nominees.

This year’s Volunteer of the Year is Dawn Torrance, who was nominated by the Society for Support to Pregnant & Parenting Teens. Torrance has been with the society for more than three years, and comes from a family of life-long volunteers.

“We cannot think of a more deserving person that is so selfless and kind,” says volunteer coordinator Sacha Balaski. “Dawne deserves to be recognized in a grand way for her hard work and dedication.”

Swiss Chalet has been named 2017’s Corporate Volunteer of the Year. The Sutherland family, which owns and operates the restaurant, has served a free Christmas dinner for people away from family for the holiday season, or who can’t provide for themselves or their family.

“They also host Music Mondays helping Non Profits fundraise while local talent perform for customers, have a Teams Rewards program helping local youth organizations, encourage employees to help the community by volunteering and more,” GPVSB says in a release.

Trevor Sak, Meg Archer and her dog Molly, Evelyn Helmrich, Akina Noppibul, and Michelle Glenn were also given Outstanding Members of the Community awards.