Cassidy Byers, Alice Stamper and The Couchiching Conservancy were awarded the 2018 Order of Orillia by Mayor Steve Clarke and the City of Orillia’s Commemorative Awards Committee at tonight’s Council meeting.
“On behalf of Council, I’d like to thank Cassidy, Alice and the members of The Couchiching Conservancy for their ongoing dedication and commitment to Orillia,” said Mayor Steve Clarke. “Orillia is lucky to have so many dedicated volunteers like these recipients and it is because of their involvement and passion that Orillia is known as such a caring and cooperative community.”
Established in 2000, the Order of Orillia recognizes individuals and groups who dedicate their time and effort to bettering the community through volunteerism. The award is reserved for residents who have enriched the lives of others through a decade or more of service and who stand as shining examples in the community. The 2017 Order of Orillia recipients were Brian Hare and the Mnjikaning Fish Fence Circle.
Order of Orillia recipients
Cassidy Byers is a youth recipient whose contributions to the community are longstanding even though she is only 17 years old. Having volunteered since the age of six, Byers has worked on student council at both the primary and secondary school level, as a volunteer for Canada Day celebrations, the Canadian Cancer Society, the Rotary Club, Operation Christmas Child, the Orillia Public Library and Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital. In addition, she canvassed for Progressive Conservative MPP Jill Dunlop during the 2018 provincial election.
Alice Stamper is a long-time Orillia area resident who has a keen sense of community and has been a volunteer for many organizations. Stamper has volunteered for 40+ years with the Canadian Cancer Society, the Girl Guides of Canada, and the Ladies Auxiliary of St. Luke’s Church. She has also volunteered for more than 40 years at ODAS Park; working with youth and patrons at the Roller Rink and also playing a key part coordinating food concessions and volunteers at the Orillia Fall Fair. In addition, Stamper has spent 22 years as a valued volunteer at Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital.
The Couchiching Conservancy:
The Couchiching Conservancy is a local land trust – a not-for-profit, Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) overseen by a volunteer Board of Directors, operated by a small number of staff and boasting more than 280 members. They have helped protect more than 13,000 acres of ecologically significant land in the Orillia region; some of which have globally recognized rare ecosystems, species and natural habitat for wildlife, flora and fauna. The Couchiching Conservancy is able to carry out its mandate through direct ownership, partnerships with other organizations such as The Nature Conservancy of Canada, and through conservation easement agreements with private landowners. This year the Couchiching Conservancy is celebrating its 25th anniversary.