Award for Excellence Nominations 

Last week, I spoke about the Federation’s Youth Education Bursary and the way that it serves to welcome young people into our sector and our work. Today, I want to talk about our Award for Excellence and the related purpose it serves—recognizing and thanking the people who have stayed in the sector and committed their careers to making our communities better places to live.

As you may know, The Federation’s Award for Excellence was established in 1995 in honour of the late Thom McGuire. It was created to recognize the exceptional contributions of an individual, team, or organization in the field of child, family, or community social services. Over the years, we have recognized a dedicated and committed group of people—previous recipients include BC’s first Representative for Children and Youth Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, Cindy Blackstock, and the Federation of BC Youth in Care Networks.

Last year, The Federation’s hard-working board of directors dedicated time to revisiting the award’s criteria. They wanted to ensure that it still reflected the original spirit and intention with which it was created. As a result, there have been a few changes to the award’s criteria as well as the nomination process.

The award now has two categories—one for individuals and one for organizations. Nominations for both categories will be accepted each year and nominations will remain active and be considered for the award up to three times. (A single award will still be presented each year at the June AGM.)

The board also wanted to reaffirm that the award should recognize and honour the work of people who don’t often get recognized—to encourage Federation members to hold each other up, celebrate the accomplishments of our colleagues, and support one another in their work. As such, the questions on the nomination form were redesigned in order to give the selection committee deeper insight into the contributions made by the individual and organizational nominees.

The future of the Award for Excellence may look a little different but its heart remains the same. It’s about taking time to recognize and appreciate the work that is often under-recognized and under-appreciated. It is about respecting, supporting, and celebrating the things that make this federation Altogether better.

Nominations are now being accepted for the 2018 Federation Award for Excellence. You can find more information and the nomination form here.

Rick FitzZaland
Federation Executive Director