The June Callwood Outstanding Achievement Award for Volunteerism 2010
And the award goes to ... Greg Chellew, long time Silver Creek parent, volunteer, Board member, Board executive and all around great guy!
One of Canada's most famous social justice activists, June Callwood’s life was marked by a strong concern for social justice issues, especially those affecting children and women. She founded or co-founded more than 50 Canadian social action organizations. These include Casey House (1988), a Toronto hospice for people with AIDS; other hostels for youth and women; PEN Canada; the Canadian Civil Liberties Association; and Feminists Against Censorship.
This award recognizes individual volunteers, volunteer groups, businesses and other organizations for outstanding contributions to their communities and the province. Often, these award recipients have shown exceptional leadership, innovation and creativity. Only 20 recipients are chosen each year. And one of this year’s recipients is GREG CHELLEW.
Following is an excerpt from his nomination:
He is a warm, funny, compassionate and thoughtful individual. He brings business acumen to the Board, but also his sense of social justice and knowledge of the particular challenges experienced by families raising children who have special needs. The Board of Silver Creek deals with issues affecting children and families. On a monthly basis issues of services, finances, staffing and community concerns are discussed and action taken by the Board. Greg is often at the forefront of offering his opinion, advice and then, most importantly, action. As a police officer, he has worked shift his entire career, and has made himself available to Silver Creek during our typical 9-5 hours. Greg will drop into Silver Creek at all necessary times and on a frequent, irregular basis, to stay in touch with the grassroots of our operations---to see the staff in action, the program being delivered and the response of the children and families. This is a very welcomed visit by all as the approach and strategy of Silver Creek as an organization is to remain active to the needs of children and families now/in the present. This more hands- on approach by a Board member is critical to the overall Team approach of our School/Staff/Board.
During Greg’s long tenure on the Board (17 years) he has been involved in significant challenges and change within our charity’s mandate. Funding issues, expansion, compassionate considerations, strategic planning, difficult times and times of great joy and appreciation. Because of the leadership of people like Greg Chellew, Silver Creek has been able to continue to serve children with physical and developmental challenges with excellence in our programming and staffing. (Please see our Excellence in Community Service Award, 2007; and CityKids Inclusion Award, 2008). These recognitions are only possible by the commitment of our entire Team, and it is time for Mr. Greg Chellew to be honoured as the standout team player that he is.
Sincere thanks to our wonderful past president, past treasurer, now Secretary for the outstanding contributions he continues to make to Silver Creek. Mazel tov!
Our classroom volunteer Amy Petko was honoured at the Ontario Volunteer Service Awards this week. Amy received a lapel pin and certificate in recognition of her commitment and dedication to Silver Creek. The awards were given by the Honourable Michael Coteau, Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, signed by Kathleen Wynne, Ontario's Premier and Donna Cansfield, MPP. Although Amy received a pin for 10 years of service, in fact she is in her 14th year of supporting our school. Amy is a huge cheerleader for Silver Creek---always spreading the word that our program is great and that she wishes she had attended as a child :-) We are happy to have her as an adult supporting children in the classroom and as a mentor and role model. Amy, we sing your praises, just like you sing to us yearly.
Congratulations from all at Silver Creek.
2007 Business Excellence Award
Silver Creek Team won the Business Excellence Award 2007 for Excellence in Community Service, not-for-profit from the Board of Trade. What a team---Staff, Board of Directors and Volunteers together made this honour possible.
The ecstatic Silver Creek team includes Staff, Board of Directors, and Volunteers
David flourished at Silver Creek and so did I. The staff became my friends and a great emotional support to me. They helped with equipment suggestions, sources of extra funding, and co-ordinating David’s school placement at Sunnyview P.S. Well, David moved on but I stayed. I have been on the Board of Directors since 1998, and President for the past 5 years. Silver Creek is a magical place!
I am always in awe at the great variety and quality of the activities that your staff bring to the outdoor space. The range of activities and the attention to detail is quite a feat. Amazing really. Thank you for all that you do.
Polly Sutton, Mother of Ethan
The things I like about Silver Creek: 1. Playing on the computer 2. Playing dress-up with my friends 3. I like when the teachers read books to me 4. I also liked to spend time with Bill. He used to tell me jokes.They were very, very, very, very funny. 5. My favourite activity was listening to music
Christopher Graci, 4 years old
Our twins started at Silver Creek in the fall of 2009. I knew they were in excellent hands and I saw them progress so rapidly. I was very concerned about their development prior to starting Silver Creek and in no time, they were at the same level as the rest of their peers. The impact the staff at Silver Creek has had on our children has been tremendous. We are happy that our twins will benefit from another year under their guidance.
My husband and I are so grateful for the wonderful and exceptional team of teachers, therapists and volunteers at Silver Creek. It is inspirational and beautiful to witness daily the love, passion and dedication that they have for each and every child/student, and their professions. They are the very best!
The staff at Silver Creek are a very special group of professionals who I find care deeply for the children they work with while at the same time pushing them to excel and surpass expectations often placed on children with disabilities. Thank you, Silver Creek!
I will never forget the impact that Silver Creek had on our family and more importantly Piero’s success in transitioning into mainstream school. Always a challenge but without a doubt you and your team made all the unknowns not as daunting as them seemed.
Susy Gallucci, mom of Piero
My two hearing impaired daughters were placed in classrooms with excellent peer language role models to assist in their language and articulation development. They received individualized programs to meet their needs. Silver Creek prepared them well for mainstream kindergarten. We are forever grateful.
Amy De Domenico
The staff at Silver Creek see the children as a ‘whole child’ i.e. well beyond any special needs that they might have, and see them as individuals with lots of strengths in different ways. For me, I have learned that the more work I can put into helping my child, the more she will be able to achieve her goals, and they can be small goals so we can celebrate success often. You are a very special group of people and you have definitely made a huge positive impact in our lives.
I will never forget the moments when interacting with my children’s teachers, speech therapists, occupational therapist and volunteers how obvious it was they were fulfilling their truest calling in supporting them and all children. I feel profoundly lucky and grateful knowing that my children’s path forward is brighter now because of them.