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MYAC presents first Youth of the Year awards

Youth awards - The Mapleton Youth Action Council (MYAC) has initiated a Youth of the Year award program to recognize youth from across Wellington County. The inaugural awards were presented at the Dec. 12 Mapleton Township council meeting. From left: front, Parker Cummings, Morgan Quirke (MYAC), Gabby Ieropoli (MYAC adult ally), Shayna Morphy, Amber Cowen, Taylor Good, Cessale Coch; back, Chloe Collins, Rainen Oates, Alexis Kuper (MYAC), Tammy McQueen (MYAC adult ally), Mapleton Mayor Neil Driscoll, Luke Whale, Tate Driscoll (MYAC), Jody DeVries and Jordan Turk.  Absent: Isaac Hirtle.  Photo by Patrick Raftis

MYAC presents first Youth of the Year awards

The Mapleton Youth Action Council (MYAC) presented its inaugural Youth of the Year awards.

MYAC plans to present the awards annually to Wellington County residents between the ages of 13 and 24 who are making a difference in their communities.

The 2017 awards were presented prior to the Mapleton Township council meeting on Dec. 12 to the following recipients.

Amber Cowen

Amber has been an active member of a variety of clubs throughout her high school career. She is actively involved in student council, Interact Club, the school band and play at Norwell District Secondary School.

She has worked on planning the school’s pep rally and was a LINK leader assisting incoming Grade 9 students.

Cessale Koch

Cessale has been a strong LINK leader over the last two and half years at Norwell. She works with Grade 9 students to ensure they have a positive transition from Grade 8. She has also volunteer volunteered to run the Java Junction case one to two days a week on her lunch hour. She often volunteers to help at various student council events and is Grade 12 representative.

 Isaac Hirtle

Isaac has been helping with the Drayton Youth Centre for the past six years. The centre requires two volunteers at all times to keep the doors opens. Isaac usually volunteers two evenings a week. He continues to offer support to other volunteers when they have a scheduling conflict. When the Drayton Youth Centre Mud Run was organized he helped recruit volunteers from among his peers.

Jordan Turk

In the fall of last year, Jordan created a community games night in Mount Forest. The imaginative idea took flight with the help of another passionate community member, family and friends and was hosted in an accessible, welcoming environment to promote inclusion for all. Jordan hosts community games night every third week of the month and welcomes regular and new members with enthusiasm and hospitality. Snacks and beverages are offered to all who attend and the atmosphere is always light and enjoyable.

Jody Devries

Jody has been a member of Norwell’s student council for the past two years and has participated as activity director and media director. She is also part of the leadership class where she takes part in various events and activities planned throughout the year. She organized the candy-gram campaign for the last two years and proceeds have been used to purchase agricultural packages through World Vision. Jody also helps with the food drives at Thanksgiving and Christmas.

She is actively involved in her church community and has volunteered with VBS and other initiatives.

Luke Whale

Luke is past president on this year’s Norwell student council. He is also a CELP coop student and actively participates in the school play. He worked extremely

hard last year during his time as student council president to ensure students had the opportunity to participate in a variety of activities that would engage and inspire them to get involved and have fun.

Parker Cummings

Parker recently joined the Minto Youth Action Council and quickly become one of the most proactive members; always eager and willing to help with any events and projects. The group is currently in the process of designing a youth space at LaunchIt Minto and Parker identified the need for computers for youth to use for homework/projects, then went out and arranged with local businesses to have computers donated. The computers will be a great addition to the space and can decrease barriers for youth in the community.

Rainen Oates

Rainen volunteers every Tuesday evening from September through to March with the Centre Wellington Children’s Drama Club and has been doing this for the last four years. As the stage manager she works very closely with the director and the 21 children in Grades 4 to 8, helping them to learn their lines while maintaining a fun, respectful and safe environment. She helps build their self-confidence, acceptance of others, teamwork, pride and responsibility.

Shayna Morphy

Shayna has helped at the Drayton Fair for several years and is now a junior director of the culinary section. She spends three days straight during the fair helping in the offices, running tractor pull results, or manning a play station.

Shayna is also an active 4-H member, often helping with fundraising events and is also a church youth group member. She often helps with the annual turkey supper by clearing tables for 500 people. She is also an usher at the Drayton Festival Theatre.

Taylor Good

Taylor volunteers, steps up, helps students in her school, serves the local Rotary Club and is president of Centre Wellington District High School Interact Club.

She also helps raise funds for the local hospital, parks and fellow students and has taken numerous courses, including suicide awareness training, which enable her to better serve her peers. She works hard, is caring, dedicated, intelligent, focused, kind and generous. You can always count on Taylor and her smiles to help when it is needed.

Taylor has visited the UN, India and Washington- all with the goal of learning how to become strong and educated enough to make a difference.

Chloe Collins

As a result of Chloe’s passion and commitment to preserving and improving the environment, she started the Ecology Club at Norwell. She offers tips and suggestions to help improve the ecological status through daily announcements at school and various projects she leads.

Chloe is a caring, generous and passionate individual who welcomes everyone with her friendly smile.



December 22, 2017


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