2014 Ontario Junior Citizen of the Year Awards

 

2014 Ontario Junior Citizens Announced

 

Every community has young stars, and while they may not quite have celebrity status, they deserve to be in the spotlight for all they have accomplished. Who are they? They are our future leaders - Ontario's youth. They are the final 12 recipients of the 2014 Ontario Junior Citizen of the Year Award.

 

"These young people represent a diverse group ranging in age, interests and backgrounds - but one thing they all share is their desire to make a difference, both locally and globally," said Gordon Cameron, President of Ontario Community Newspapers Association.  

 

This year, more than 130 nominations of eligible youth, aged six to 17, came pouring in from across Ontario. All of these wonderful nominees are being recognized with certificates by their local community newspapers. Each young individual nominated goes above and beyond what is expected of someone their age.

 

The Ontario Junior Citizen of the Year Awards are promoted through the 300+ member newspapers of the Ontario Community Newspapers Association (OCNA) with the support of corporate sponsors TD Bank Group and Insurance Bureau of Canada.

 

Nominations of eligible youth are received through member community newspapers committed to recognizing the outstanding leaders who are making a difference in their communities. Nominees may be involved in community service; contribute to their community while living with a physical or psychological limitation; or have performed acts of heroism or bravery. Candidates are also recognized for making life better for others and excellence in personal achievement.

 

"The contributions that these young Ontarians make in their schools, communities and to our country are remarkable. Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) is proud to sponsor the Ontario Junior Citizen of the Year Awards that celebrates these bright and worthy young Canadians," says Ralph Palumbo, VP Ontario, Insurance Bureau of Canada. "We wish all finalists the best of luck moving forward and thank them for their continued efforts to better the lives of others."

 

"Our young people continue to inspire us and give us hope for the future," says Frank McKenna, Deputy Chair TD Bank Group. "At TD, we are thrilled to support the Ontario Junior Citizen of the Year Award and congratulate all of the winners and nominees on their exceptional work in supporting our communities."

 

The Junior Citizens and their families will be invited to a special ceremony in Toronto in the spring.

 

Below is a synopsis of the 12 final recipients listed in alphabetical order.

 

Kaidyn Blair, 12, Essex
Kaidyn was born with Biliary Atresia and required a liver transplant at a very young age. Wanting to help others living with the same disease, Kaidyn's Dream...A Walk for Life was born to help promote organ and tissue donation. He shares his story during various speaking engagements at local schools, hospitals and town council. Since this initiative was launched roughly two years ago, the number of registered donors in his hometown of Essex has increased from 18% to 31%. The town has even declared April 27th Kaidyn's Blair Organ Donation Awareness Day.

 

Annaleise Carr, 16, Simcoe
Annaleise Carr has become a household name amongst many Canadian residents. She is best known for being the youngest girl to swim across Lake Ontario and more recently, Lake Erie, to raise funds for Camp Trillium. To date she has raised an impressive $420,000. It all began after she was unable to volunteer with the camp for children with cancer, because of her young age. Annaleise continues to participate in public speaking engagements to talk about her swims, continue raising funds and inspire others to give back.

 

Shaylin Conroy, 17, Oshawa
Shaylin is very involved with a local homeless youth shelter in her community called The Refuge. She first began volunteering her time at Christmas, serving dinner and providing ‘muffins and mittens' to each youth. As an aspiring photojournalist, Shaylin took it upon herself to capture images of several homeless youth in hopes of portraying the individuals in a positive light and creating awareness for the issue of homelessness. Shaylin has made a positive impact amongst these youth and in the community at large with her creativity and leadership skills.

 

Mira Donaldson, 13, Fort Frances
Living on a remote island on Rainy Lake in Fort Frances has provided unique experiences for Mira. On days when the weather is nice, she can canoe to school! However, it does create challenges and limited opportunities. Therefore, when accepted into the Legislative Page program, she (and her family) leaped at the chance and moved to Toronto for five weeks. With Type 1 Diabetes, Mira hopes to one day become an endocrinologist and find a cure for the disease. She has already started to plan financially for the intense schooling she faces in the future by starting a business called ‘Island Dwellers' and selling homemade creations.

 

Emma Ermel, 10, Kitchener
Emma is another inspiring young lady dedicated to finding a cure for diabetes. Through various fundraisers including hot chocolate sales, lemonade stands and Dollar for Diabetes Day within her school, Emma has raised more than $10,000 for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. She even created ‘D-Girls' - an informative magazine aimed at girls with the disease.  

 

Sabrina Hundal, 17, Mississauga
Sabrina has an impressive resume of community contributions and titles including Founder and President at Science Girls, a non-profit organization which aims to empower females in various areas of the ‘STEM' fields (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). In Canada, Science Girls has provided more than 400 girls with the inspiration to overcome gender-based barriers to success through a conference and mentorship program. In addition, Sabrina became the youngest researcher working at the Donnelly Centre for Cellular and Biomecular Research at the age of 15.

 

Joshua Morrison, 13, Uxbridge
Joshua has been collecting pennies for roughly two years in an effort to help build a house with Habitat for Humanity. To date he has raise more than $15,000 and now speaks at different events to encourage people of all ages to make a difference. 

 

Isaac Pinsonneault, 17, Chatham
Isaac is a hero! While camping this past summer with his family, there was a cry for help as a man was drowning due to high waves and a severe undertow. Without hesitation, Isaac grabbed a floating device and swam approximately 25 metres to save the man. Using knowledge passed along from his grandmother, Isaac managed to calm the man down and safely coach them both to shore.

 

Hayden Prince, 13, Uxbridge
Our youth in Ontario continue to get more and more creative! Hayden is no exception as founder of Shooting4Food, a fundraising event for his local food bank. The kicker? This event sees participants shooting airsoft guns at zombies. Yes - zombies. Since its inception roughly two years ago, the annual event has raised $6,300 and collected more than 1,600 non-perishable food items. Hayden hopes to begin planning for a Shooting4MentalHealth event to collect donations for the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH).

 

Tory Provenzano, 13, LaSalle
Together with his family, Tory's Tourney was created in an effort to build awareness and raise funds for Duchene's Muscular Dystrophy. It's an annual golf tournament which recently marked its 11th anniversary and has collected over $350,000 for the cause. Struggling with the disease himself, Tory speaks to various organizations and schools about his experiences. His fundraising efforts and speeches continue with hopes to find a cure for MD.  

 

Abeera Shahid, 17, Brampton
Abeera's leadership skills are outstanding. She is Founder of the Brampton Multicultural Youth Council (BMYC) and has led a team of ambassadors in the implementation of community projects. Through this initiative, she launched ‘Hidden Cultures', a program consisting of four interactive workshops over the course of two weekends where youth learned about different cultural art forms. Since then, BMYC hosted a conference called ‘One World' which directly impacted over 300 youth.  

 

Emilie Suwala, 16, Stoney Creek
Emilie is a founding member of the Celtic Circle Student Leadership Club within her school. The group focuses on suicide prevention and creating awareness of mental health. She is trained in safeTALK to be a suicide alert helper and has implemented many transition activities for grade 9 students. In addition, she volunteers her time with a local long term care facility and participates in walks for various causes.

 

 

Our Sponsors
Our goal to recognize outstanding young people in communities across Ontario would not be possible without the generous support of our sponsors.


About TD Community Giving
TD Bank Group invests in communities in order to effect positive change in the places where it operates and where its customers and employees live and work. In 2014, TD donated more than $82 million to community organizations in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. In Canada, TD focuses on education and financial literacy, creating opportunities for young people and the environment. For further information, please visit www.td.com/corporate-responsibility.

 

About Insurance Bureau of Canada
Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) is pleased to celebrate 50 years as a valuable resource for insurance information. Since 1964, IBC has been working with governments across Canada to make our communities safer, championing issues that directly affect Canadians and the property and casualty (P&C) insurance industry. IBC is the national industry association representing Canada's private home, car and business insurers. Its member companies represent 90% of the private P&C insurance market in Canada. The P&C insurance industry employs over 118,600 Canadians, pays more than $7 billion in taxes and levies to the federal, provincial and municipal governments, and has a total premium base of $48 billion.

 

To view media releases and other information, visit the media section of IBC's website at www.ibc.ca. Follow IBC on Twitter @InsuranceBureau or like us on Facebook.

 

 

 

For further information please contact:

Kelly Gorven
Ontario Junior Citizen of the Year Award Coordinator
Ontario Community Newspapers Association
905-639-8720 ext 221
k.gorven@ocna.org

 

 

 




 

Every community has young stars, and while they may not quite have celebrity status, they deserve to be in the spotlight for all they have accomplished. Who are they? They are our future leaders - Ontario's youth. 

 

These individuals are working hard to make their community a better place by volunteering for various organizations, making donations, saving lives and maintaining top grade averages. They are everywhere - in your homes, at school, on the field and at church. If you know someone who deserves a large pat on the back, nominate them today for the 2014 Ontario Junior Citizen of the Year Awards. 

 

Coordinated by the Ontario Community Newspapers Association with the support of its 300 member newspapers and our sponsors.


Nominations may come from anyone in the community who wishes to recognize a deserving young person for all they do. Nominations should document the activities of the nominee with letters, newspaper clippings, recommendations, photographs, etc.

 

Nominees from previous years who continue their noteworthy endeavours are eligible to be nominated again. New nomination forms and updated documentation are required.

Nominations will be accepted until November 30, 2014.

 

NEW: Try our online nomination form. Please note: you must create an account before accessing this page. This will allow you to leave and return to your nomination at any time.  


Alternatively, nomination and supporting forms are available for download (below) in both PDF and Microsoft Word formats. If you use the 'Word' format document you will be able to complete it on your computer. The PDF document can be printed and written on. Forms can be e-mailed to - jr.citizen@ocna.org, faxed to 905-639-6962 or mailed to us.

 

Each submission must include at least two supporting nominations.


Parents/Guardians must sign to acknowledge the PIPEDA policy.

 

Nomination Form (English Word document)  Nomination Form (French Word document)
Nomination Form (English PDF) Nomination Form (French PDF)
Supporting Form (English Word document) Supporting Form (French Word document)
Supporting Form (English PDF) Supporting Form (French PDF)
Policy concerning the Personal Information Act (PIPEDA)

 

Nomination forms are also available at, and completed forms may be returned to:

  • The Ontario Community Newspapers Association,
    3228 South Service Rd., Suite 116, Burlington, Ontario L7N 3H8, Tel: 905-639-8720, Ext. 221 · Fax: 905-639-6962 Email: jr.citizen@ocna.org
  • Your local community newspaper office

Eligibility

Any resident of Ontario, aged six to 17 years (must be at least six years, but no older than 17 years by November 30, 2014), is eligible to receive an Ontario Junior Citizen of the Year Award. Only individuals may be nominated.

Nominees may be involved in
  • worthwhile community service;
  • special young people who are contributing while living with a physical or psychological limitation;
  • individuals who have performed acts of heroism or bravery in the past year;
  • excellence in personal achievements
  • recipients may also be 'good kids' who show a commitment to make life better for others and do more than is normally expected of someone their age.

The Award

A committee of community newspaper publishers, editors, and our sponsors will select the award recipients from all nominations received.

Up to 12 individuals will be recipients of an award. Recipients and their families are invited to attend an awards ceremony in Toronto in March 2014. Final recipients will be announced on this web site on Friday, January 23, 2015.

NOTE: Final recipients will be required to submit photographs depicting their activities and achievements for reproduction associated with the program.

The Ontario Junior Citizen of the Year Awards Program strives not only to recognize the dozen or so outstanding young people who will be the recipients of awards, but to also give recognition to hundreds of others who represent the 'good kids' we all know. To achieve this, everyone nominated receives a Certificate of Recognition from their local community newspaper.

 

Meet Past Recipients

Read about the 2013 Junior Citizens of the Year
Read about the 2012 Junior Citizens of the Year
Read about the 2011 Junior Citizens of the Year

Our Sponsors

Our goal to recognize outstanding young people in communities across Ontario would not be possible without the generous support of our sponsors.

Primary Sponsors

TD Canada: Making a Difference Together 

TD Community Giving
TD Bank Group invests in communities in order to effect positive change in the places where it operates and where its clients and employees live and work. In 2012, TD donated over $65 million to support community organizations in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. In Canada, TD focuses on education and financial literacy, creating opportunities for young people and the environment. For further information, please visit www.td.com/corporate-responsibility

 

 

About Insurance Bureau of Canada
Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) is pleased to celebrate 50 years as a valuable resource for insurance information. Since 1964, IBC has been working with governments across Canada to make our communities safer, championing issues that directly affect Canadians and the property and casualty (P&C) insurance industry. IBC is the national industry association representing Canada’s private home, car and business insurers. Its member companies represent 90% of the private P&C insurance market in Canada. The P&C insurance industry employs over 118,600 Canadians, pays more than $7 billion in taxes and levies to the federal, provincial and municipal governments, and has a total premium base of $48 billion.

 

To view media releases and other information, visit the media section of IBC’s website at www.ibc.ca. Follow IBC on Twitter @InsuranceBureau or like us on Facebook.

 

 

Patron Sponsors
James Publishing Company
McLaren Press Graphics Ltd
Performance Printing
Temiskaming Printing Co.


For more information on the Junior Citizens Awards, please contact Kelly Gorven (905) 639-8720 ext. 221.