For donating more than 4,000 hours of their time to the community, eight Plymouth residents were presented with the 2013 President’s Volunteer Service Award. They were honored for their dedication in helping others at a special ceremony in Plymouth sponsored by Mayflower RSVP.
Receiving the prestigious national award from Plymouth were Benjamin Brewster, Margie Burgess, John Gallant, Adam Hill, John B. MacKenzie, Constance E. Melahoures, Carl Pratt and F. Steven Triffletti. In all, 23 Plymouth County residents were honored.
The President’s Volunteer Service Award is the premier volunteer awards program in this country. It recognizes Americans who, by their demonstrated commitment and example, inspire others to engage in volunteer service. Winners receive the official President’s Volunteer Service Award pin, certificate of achievement and a congratulatory letter from the president of the United States.
Mayflower RSVP, the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program for Plymouth County, is a designated national Certifying Organization for the President’s Volunteer Service Award Program. It evaluates nominations of Plymouth County residents who meet or exceed the criteria for this honor. Once their volunteer service has been vetted, nominees are invited to an Awards Dinner in September to receive a pin and letter of thanks from the President of the United States.
The Plymouth winners were cited for their accomplishments when receiving the award:
Benjamin Brewster – He has served the town for 60 years, giving more than 13,000 hours of his time. He was a Town Meeting member for 46 years. He also was a volunteer Water Commissioner for 20 years and has been Vice President of the Pilgrim Society since 1976.
Margie Burgess – This dynamic 73-year-old has volunteered more than 70,000 hours! Since 1998, she has been a member of the School Committee. She has also been a specialized foster care parent and a host for more than 50 international students. She is also a member of the Rotary Club of Plymouth.
John Gallant – He has donated 6,700 hours to Boy Scouts Troop 9 and Plymouth Council on Aging. He serves as a mentor for young Scouts and a cook at the Council on Aging. He also volunteers with My Brother’s Keeper and Church of the Blesses Kateri Tekakwitha.
Adam Hill – He is a volunteer for The Arc of Greater Plymouth, serving on the Board of Directors locally and the state level, as well as lobbying legislators and speaking on issues. He also volunteered with the Plymouth Council on Aging. His volunteer total is 7,400 hours.
John B. MacKenzie – In 30 years as a volunteer, he has donated 15,000 hours to the Boy Scouts and his church. His commitment to young people has been unwavering as he sought to teach them about nature and respecting the environment, as well as learning to be good citizens.
Constance Melahoures – She has been very active in her church and helping the homeless, giving more than 20,000 hours. She served two terms on the Vestry and one as Senior Warden at Christ Church. She is a founder of the Plymouth Taskforce for the Homeless, a program that has helped get 40 homeless residents into permanent housing.
Carl Pratt – He has informed the community about young athletes for 25 years. He has been volunteer producer and host of Video Sports Page on PACTV for a quarter century, donating 13,000 hours to taping, editing and broadcasting a unique sports program about high school and youth sports.
F. Steven Triffletti –For the past 21 years, he has been the Town Meeting Moderator. He has been a member of the Rotary Club of Plymouth for 30 years and served on the Jordan Hospital Board of Directors for 16 years. He has amassed 6,000 hours in volunteer time.
Mayflower RSVP provides meaningful opportunities to volunteers aged 55 and older that provide personal fulfillment by utilizing their life skills and experiences to contribute to various organizations, and improve the quality of life for Plymouth County citizens in need.
Mayflower RSVP is one of 750 volunteer programs in a national network with funding from the Corporation for National & Community Service, enabling older Americans to make a difference in their local communities. It is also funded by the United Way of Greater Plymouth County and with generous donations from businesses and individuals.
Mayflower RSVP is located at 385 Court St. in Plymouth. Its service area covers all of the communities in Plymouth County. To volunteer or for more information about the group, go to www.mayflowerrsvp.org or call 508-746-7787.