This is an email I sent to Steve Clark regarding the Volunteer Service Awards programme:
Last January, in response to an invitation from the Honours and Awards Secretariat of the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, our seniors’ club, the New Horizon Club, nominated six members to receive a Volunteer Service Award this year. This is a programme that has been in place for many years and is greatly appreciated by small organizations like ours.
Because these award ceremonies for our area are usually held in June and we had not yet been advised of the date nor had our nominees received the official invitation, I telephoned the Honours and Awards Secretariat to ask when we might receive the information. I was told that the programme was being reviewed and the Secretariat had no information to share at this time.
I cannot begin to express my disappointment. I understand that all programmes are under review but surely it makes no sense to look at the possibility of cancelling a programme at this late stage. Organizations were invited to send the names of their nominees by January 25, 2019. We did so and informed our nominees of the honour they would be receiving at an award ceremony. We have done this for some years and our nominees have greatly appreciated the recognition by the Province of their contribution to their community.
To include the 2019 Volunteer Services recognition programme in your review at this stage is asinine to say the least. I do hope that you will be writing to every person nominated by the various organizations in the province to explain why this is happening. Volunteers from small communities like ours are important to their communities. This has been a worthwhile programme and I hope your government is capable of recognizing this.