On Thursday, April 14th Kim Powell, Production Planner for Irving Paper, was recognized by the City of Saint John as an outstanding volunteer. Kim was nominated by Jennifer Walsh, second grade teacher at Prince Charles School. As part of the PALS (Partners Assisting Local Schools) program, Kim has been reading to Jennifer’s students at Prince Charles School every Friday afternoon for the past 14 years.
“It has been such a pleasure and a privilege having Kim come and read to my class all these years. Her dedication and commitment to my students is greatly appreciated,” says Jennifer Walsh.
Each week she spends half of her lunch hour reading books to the students, chosen by the “star-of-the-day.” When Kim is finished, together she and the children will count the number of books that have been read -- often between seven and nine books. Altogether, Kim has spent over 500 hours volunteering with the PALS program.
This was the sixth consecutive year the City of Saint John held an appreciation event to honour volunteers in sport, recreation, and community development. This year the event was newly dubbed “Cheers to Volunteers” to take the place of the awards banquet held in previous years.
“It became too difficult to select award winners from all the outstanding nominations," said Chairperson Lori Lambert, Coordinator with the City of Saint John. “This year, we are eliminating the awards in order to recognize all nominees equally with an entertaining and celebratory evening."
Held at the Mary Oland Theatre in the New Brunswick Museum, Cheers to Volunteers featured speeches from city councillors including His Worship Mayor Mel Norton, a musical performance from David Myles, and concluded with a dessert buffet.
| Kim Powell, Production Planner for Irving Paper
The PALS (Partners Assisting Local Schools) Program addresses the needs associated with students living in poverty. Initiated in Saint John by Mr. James K. Irving and the local school district, PALS has grown to over 30 schools in NB with close to 200 business and community partners and hundreds of volunteers.
PALS partners help impact children’s academic achievements, attendance, school spirit, motivation, social skills, sports activity, and cultural awareness. Volunteer activities include mentoring, coaching, serving breakfast, offering career guidance, organizing after school clubs, and helping behind the scenes.