FAVRM is honored to recognize the 2016 award winners. Presented in Tampa at the 2016 Florida Volunteer Service Conference the awards honored outstanding volunteer managers and programs throughout the state in the following categories:
This award was established to honor a Volunteer Administrator with six or fewer years of experience in management of volunteers, who reflects the high ideals of the profession and whose dedicated efforts allow volunteers to produce significant achievements.
This year’s honoree is Kay Pelt-Walker. She is the Volunteer Services Coordinator for VolunteerLEON a division of Leon County Government. In this position she is responsible for the recruitment and registration of over 5,500 citizens who volunteer in Leon County government through internships and volunteer in county programs and special events, contributing over 120,000 hours of time, talent and skills.
Kay is a highly professional, valued employee who has consistently demonstrated a strong work ethic. Kay is reliable, dedicated and eternally upbeat. Of particular value is Kay’s team player mind-set, enthusiastic embrace of change, ability to work with minimal supervision and unwavering commitment to exceeding customer expectations. Unsolicited praise from volunteers and community partners regarding Kay’s outstanding level of service, professionalism and follow-through is regularly received.
Kay’s volunteer service includes many local service initiatives through church and board service in non-profits organizations. Kay has served on the Board of Directors for Junior Achievement of the Big Bend whose purpose is “to inspire and prepare young people to succeed in a global economy.” Currently, Kay holds the position of Secretary for both the Florida Association For Volunteer Resource Management (FAVRM) and Big Bend Leaders of Volunteer Engagement (L.O.V.E).
Kay received a Bachelor of Science in Public Management from Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University and graduated from Florida State University and the Askew School of Public Administration and Policy with a Master of Public Administration and a Certificate in Florida City and County Management.
This award was established to honor the outstanding achievements of a local volunteer program in their creation and implementation of a program/service, which utilizes volunteers to creatively serve both their agency and their community.
This year’s honoree is Heart of Florida United Way. Heart of Florida United Way’s (HFUW) 8th Annual Day of Action focused on addressing summer reading loss in Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties. By providing low-income students access to books, the Heart of Florida United Way encouraged reading and enhanced literacy over the summer months by engaging volunteers in fun, interactive literacy games and activities with youth. On Tuesday, June 21, volunteers gathered to lead literacy focused activities and to distribute 13,000 books, backpacks, and summer reading journals to 2,300 children ranging in grades from PreK-5. Three of the Day of Action projects involved a visit from notable author Ty Allan Jackson. Ty Allan Jackson taught an interactive lesson on entrepreneurship while reading passages from his book Danny Dollar Millionaire: The Lemonade Escapade. To conclude the project 500 students were given autographed copies of his book.
Eighteen sites that are located in lower income areas of the communities in Orange, Seminole, and Osceola counties benefited from Day of Action projects. Sites included 10 Boys and Girls Clubs, 4 elementary schools, 2 day nurseries, and 2 other nonprofit agencies.
HFUW engaged a mix of 281 volunteers from corporate, faith, student, and civic groups that contributed a total of 747 hours which is equivalent to $17,599 in volunteer service. Volunteers represented a diverse set of groups such as University of Central Florida (UCF), Target Corporation, Bank of America, SunTrust Bank, The Walt Disney Company, Florida Hospital and many more. During each project, volunteers gained a better understanding of the sole mission of each agency or school they served and how each mission connects to the HFUW goal of improving reading and literacy skills in children.
Nearly 20,000 books were collected through community book drives. A minimum of five books were selected by each child who participated following each project. Volunteers helped the students chose the books they were most interested in. 13,000 books were distributed to students PreK-5 during Day of Action projects. The remaining books were distributed to middle school and high school students participating in other Heart of Florida United Way programs. Books collected that were not appropriate for school children were distributed to other HFUW partners. Over 100 volunteers spent 24 hours over the span of a week to sort the books in the week leading up to Day of Action.
Traci Blue, Director of the Volunteer Center received the award on behalf of Heart of Florida United Way.
This award was established to honor an administrator of a volunteer program in Florida, who reflects the high ideals of the profession and whose dedicated efforts allow volunteers to produce significant achievements.
This year’s honoree is Kim Berghs, Volunteer Center Manager with United Way of Lee, Hendry, Glades & Okeechobee. Kim has been actively involved volunteer management for 10 years first through the Friendship Volunteer Center and then with United Way Volunteer Center. As a matter of fact, Kim was inaugural Volunteer Manager for the United Way. She has been instrumental in placing not only individual volunteers, but also group and corporate volunteers in meaningful and appropriate volunteer opportunities. Under her supervision, the volunteer center has grown and effectively meets and needs of partnering agencies in Lee County, FL. She works with businesses, colleges, K-12 schools, and Kiwanis groups just to name a few to engage in much needed group projects. These groups have helped at the local food banks, assisted senior agencies in delivering food bags monthly to their clients, participated in National Services Days, etc.
In addition to her work responsibilities and taking care of her mother, Kim engages in volunteer service herself. She is a member of the local Kiwanis through which she is involved in efforts to help local school children raise their reading levels among other things. She is on the board of FAVRM, helping to steer the course for the Association including hosting and coordinating speakers for at least 2 Forums in last couple for years. Kim has been an American Red Cross volunteer for many years providing CPR and first aid training to individuals and organizations. She organized Hands Only CPR training for a Nationals Service Day project as she recruited several individuals to become trainers to assist with this training. She has a wealth of knowledge in the area of volunteer management and is willing to share it in any context. For all these years of service and in all the many ways she continues to serve.