• James Armstrong

Vaudreuil-Soulanges community builders receive recognition


In recognition of their work in building stronger communities, 26 residents and representatives of area organizations were awarded for their work by MP Peter Schiefke.

Twenty-six residents and organizations from communities across the Vaudreuil-Soulanges region were presented with awards recognizing their contributions to the greater community during a ceremony held at Hudson’s Stephen F. Shaar Community Centre on Saturday, December 1.

“We started this last year to celebrate Canada 150,” said Federal MP Peter Schiefke who was on hand to present the awards. “I realized after that experience that there were so many people who needed to be honoured in our community,” he said noting it was difficult to select candidates from the hundreds of nominations made by local citizens. “It’s an opportunity to thank the individuals for all the work they do to improve our quality of life.”

Lifetime Achievement Awards

Former MP for Outremont as well as holding various federal cabinet ministry positions, the Honourable Marc Lalonde was recognized for his community activities including his work with the Fondation de la paroisse Sainte-Jeanne-de-Chantal created to preserve the parish church of the same name in Île-Perrot.

Dr. Monique Rozon-Rivest has been a general practitioner at the Centre de Santé de Rigaud and the Centre d’Hébergement de Rigaud for 41 years. In addition, she has served as a Member of the Board of Directors of the CLSC La Presqu’Île from 1982 to 2004. She is also the president and founder of the Fondation des enfants de Vaudreuil-Soulanges where she has made it her mission to help all children in vulnerable situations attain success in their education and in society.

Posthumous lifetime achievement awards

Kenneth Lefrançois became a member of Rotary International in 1976 while living in Rouyn-Noranda, Québec. Through his involvement in Rotary, Lefrançois discovered the tools for building community and making the world a better place. One of those tools was a series of four questions that always required an affirmative “yes:” Is it the truth? Is it fair to all concerned? Will it build good will and friendship? Will it be beneficial to all concerned?

Line Lebrun was instrumental in making the Canadian Cancer Society better known across the region through 20 years of dedicated service. She contributed to the telephone counselling service, ‘Cancer, J’écoute,’ through 30 pairings of newly diagnosed patients who could speak to those who’d already battled the disease and 310 phone calls that helped improve the quality of life for people with cancer. She was a volunteer, team captain, organizer and fundraiser for the Relais pour la vie de Vaudreuil-Soulanges for 15 years.

Recognition of citizens

A group of 21 citizens from communities across the region ranging from volunteers and artists to entrepreneurs also received awards. They were contemporary mosaic artist Monica Brinkman; volunteer with handicapped athletes Christopher Hickson; community volunteer with youth Jacqueline Connelly; Saint-Patrick’s School volunteer Jean Tremblay; tattoo artist Jeffrey Wiet; co-founder of Comité 21 Québec Lorraine Simard; founder of the L’Actuel volunteer centre Marie-Élaine Wart; volunteer for community sports John Rack; cultural events and fundraising organizer Sarvdeep Singh Bath; parish priest Fr. Roland Demers; volunteer photographer Danick Denis; Finnegan’s Market owner Barbara Aird; Gilles Boutin for maintaining the equestrian trails in Saint-Lazare’s La Pinière; artist, photographer and web site developer Christian Gonzalez; Centre Prénatal et Jeunes Families founder Chantal Darcy; Maison de la famille volunteer Dianne Lyonnais; Fondation du patrimoine Sainte-Jeanne-de-Chantal secretary Agnès Morin Fecteau; social and cross-cultural events’ organizer Atif Abdelati; volunteer with Club Richelieu of Île-Perrot Mathieu Hébert; volunteer driver for senior citizens Robert Durocher; and social inclusion enterprise organizer of Croissant 21 in Rigaud, Bertin Savard.

Regional palliative care residence receives award

The Vaudreuil-Soulanges Palliative Care Residence and Foundation was recognized for the invaluable service it provides to the community free of charge. Board of Directors President Pierre Cyr accepted the award on behalf of the organization. The Residence has offered specialized palliative care services to the community since 2010.

Community strength

“What makes communities strong are the people,” Schiefke observed. “Diversity is our strength regardless of age, or gender, or sexual orientation, language, culture, religion, all of us together are a strong community.”

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