Habermehls receive Children’s Foundation Community Champion Award

MINTO – Local residents Amy and Grant Habermehl have been recognized as “Community Champions” by the Children’s Foundation of Guelph and Wellington.

The Habermehls were recognized with the Community Champion Award at the foundation’s Once Upon A Time Gala held in Guelph on Oct. 14.

Since 2012 Amy has coordinated local efforts for the foundation’s Adopt-A-Family program from the couple’s place of business at Grant’s Service Centre in Palmerston.

The Adopt-A-Family Program connects families who need support during the holiday season with donors who “give the gift of hope and joy” by shopping for tangible gifts and grocery-needs cards, foundation officials state. Families are referred to the program by social/community agencies in Guelph and Wellington County. While originally a Christmas holiday program, it is open to families of all backgrounds and traditions to meet their needs and wishes.

The foundation annually presents the Community Champion Award to individuals, groups, or organizations that support their work “in building a community where every child and youth has the opportunity to participate, learn and grow to build a brighter future.”

Foundation officials state the Habermehls were recognized “for their unwavering dedication to organizing and galvanizing the Palmerston community for the Adopt-A-Family program, helping hundreds of families and kids experience the joys of the holiday season since 2012.”

“Years ago when we started to get involved in with Adopt-A-Family my goal was really just to teach my little kids … what Christmas was really about,” Amy states in foundation video recognizing award recipients. 

She says the Children’s Foundation selects the recipients allowing her to concentrate on fulfilling the wish lists. 

“They did all the hard work and all I really had to do was buy the presents,” Amy notes.

The Habermehls share the list of participating families with others in the Minto community. Local firefighters, municipal staff and local businesses are regularly among those pitching in to fulfil a family’s wish.

“It’s very easy to do my job because all I do is match them and then I get to collect all the fun stuff at the end” and deliver it to the foundation,” she explains.

“It’s become a community event for other parents of young children to teach them about giving back,” she adds.

Blessings to You recognized

Also recognized at the gala in the “Visionaries” category of the foundation’s Donor Hall of Fame was the Palmerston-based Blessings to You Centre. The volunteer centre accepts donated items from the community for re-sale and uses the proceeds to support various needs in the community.