WES honours its volunteers
Lynn Proulx earns special recognition
Volunteers play an important role in any community, and school communities are no different.
At this time of year, many local schools recognize and honour the volunteers who help their school community. While every volunteer plays an important role, there are sometimes volunteers who go above and beyond and earn special recognition.
Lynn Proulx, a volunteer at Westlock Elementary School, is one such example.
At the school’s volunteer appreciation tea last Thursday, she was given the Exemplary Community Partner Award from Pembina Hills trustee David Truckey to recognize her many years of dedication to the school.
“I was astounded,” Proulx said. “I’m doing something I really enjoy doing, and to think they would actually give me an award, it was mind-blowing.”
Truckey, principal Terry Anderson and teacher Joan Latimer, who nominated Proulx for the award, all spoke highly of her contributions to the school and the importance of volunteers.
Proulx’s contribution to the school has come on a weekly basis for the past eight years, with her involvement in the Reading Mamas program, which Latimer organizes to help struggling readers improve their skills.
“She listened to children read and she supported them,” Latimer said. “They were kids who needed a little bit of extra help and she listened to them.”
There are about 20 volunteers in the program, who help out one day per week for one or more six-week cycles working with young readers.
“Lynn has volunteered for every Tuesday morning for many years,” Latimer said. “Like clockwork.”
She has also been involved as an in-class aide for teacher Linda Arndt for many years.
Proulx said she was not expecting to be given any special recognition; she simply volunteers because she likes to give back to the community and likes working with kids.
“I love working with the children. That’s mostly why I do it,” she said.
“It’s rewarding to see how they learn; those little minds absorb so much.”
She added she believes the program is very helpful for the students involved; there is always a significant difference in the reader’s skills between the first and final week of the tutoring.
While Proulx earned special honours for her work this year, Latimer emphasized that every volunteer at the school, whether they volunteer an hour a year or an hour a day, all contribute to making the school special.
“It’s huge. It’s part of our Westlock Elementary School culture,” she said. “Parents and grandparents, family members and community members, are all part of our school and they make our school a better place.”
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