Metropolis acknowledges three years of the perfect of the perfect throughout Thursday’s Civic and Neighborhood Awards – Kelowna Information

Photo: Wayne Moore

Lloyd Nelson (l) Kelowna 2021 Citizen of the Year

The City of Kelowna celebrated its best, its brightest, its future and its unwavering spirit of giving Thursday during the 47th annual Civic and Community Awards gala at the Laurel Packinghouse.

A packed house of nominees and invited guests honoured not only those who stepped up and achieved great things during the pandemic-ravaged 2021, but those winners from 2019 and 2020 who were unable to have their moment in the spotlight while live events and gatherings were cancelled.

Thursday’s 70-minute gala honoured the city’s top athletes and mentors, young citizens, the arts, environmental stewardship, volunteer organizations and Kelowna’s Citizen of the Year who said he lives for volunteering.

“I do more volunteering than I do work at home. If my wife wants to find me, she always knows where to look,” said Lloyd Nelson.

“But, that’s what I do,I volunteer wherever I can.”

Nelson was honoured for the his tireless work getting food to children at risk of food insecurity in the Central Okanagan through “Hope for the Nations – Food for Thought” program.

He helped ensure community food planters were built, food was planted, tended to, harvested and delivered.

Nelson also worked on the Food for Thought garden which will feed families in need for years to come.

“It’s very humbling to even be nominated and a finalist. I really don’t look at myself as being any citizen of the year.”

The city also recognized Edna Terbasket, executive director of the Ki-Low-Na Friendship Society with the Anita Tozer Award,a special honour bestowed by unanimous vote from city council.

Also a member of the UBCO Aboriginal Advisory Council, Terbasket has helped create, and strengthen, Aboriginal resources in the community for more than 20 years.

She said she was tricked into coming to the ceremony, thinking she would be presenting an award to Coun. Mohini Singh instead of being an honoured recipient.

“I was shocked. I kept wondering when am I going to go up there to present Mohini with a well-deserved award,”said Terbasket.

She worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to make sure families, youth, Elders and those experiencing homelessness had the essential services they need to get by.

But, she also made sure to recognize those who helped her to help others.

“I have seen how generous people can be when people in need really need help…the support the Ki-Low-Na Friendship Society received was unbelievable,”said Terbasket.

“We were able to assist a lot of our folks, and our doors are open to anybody, not just Indigenous people, we help a lot of people whether it’s food, shelter and resources to navigate the medical and legal system.”

Other winners Thursday night include:

  • Dryden Bennett – Teen Honour in the Arts
    • Winner also receives a $500 entrance scholarship to the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies at UBCO
  • Jennifer Money – Honour in the Arts
  • Tatum Wade – Female high school Athlete of the Year
  • Nathan Loo and Everett Schmuland – Male high school Athlete of the Year
  • KSS Owls AAAA Boys Volleyball Team – Team of the Year
  • Malindi Elmore – Female Athlete of the Year
  • Jerome Blake – Male Athlete of the Year
  • Mike Sodaro – Coach/Administrator of the Year
  • David Withler – Young Citizen of the Year
    • Each finalist in this category receive a scholarship through the Dillon Thomas Budd and Payton Leigh Budd Youth Scholarship
  • Don Dobson – Champion for the Environment
    • Don passed away last year. He would have turned 75 on Thursday.
  • Kelowna Toyota – Corporate Community of the Year
  • Canadian Mental Health Association – Volunteer Organization of the Year
    • The CMHA also receive a $3,000 cash prize from the Central Okanagan Foundation

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