Tuesday, 15 September 2020 15:26

RSVP Honors Volunteer Recipients of 2020 Presidential Lifetime Achievement Award

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Sybil Cummins Sybil Cummins Submitted photo

The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP), a program within SUNY Oswego’s Office of Business and Community Relations is pleased to announce that RSVP volunteers Sybil Cummins and Debra Roberts are recipients of the 2020 Presidential Life-time Achievement Award.

The Presidential Lifetime Achievement Award also known as The President’s Call to Service Award recognizes those individuals who have completed more than 4,000 hours of community volunteerservice during their lifetime. Few people achieve this exceptional milestone, which is considered the highest level national volunteer service award.

Sybil Cummins joined RSVP in April 2009 and volunteers at the Sandy Creek/Lacona Friendship Shop in Sandy Creek. She has also volunteered with the Sandy Creek Grange Food Pantry in the past. The Sandy Creek/Lacona Friendship Shop is a thrift store serving those in need and anyone looking for a bargain on gently used items. The Food Pantry is located behind the thrift shop and is open to residents in the Sandy Creek School District. Sybil recalls a wonderful memory of an 8-year-old girl and her mother donating $100 worth of food to the pantry. Sybil enjoys volunteering as it gives her an opportunity to help others and meet new people. She states volunteering has shown her “Everyone is equal, and no one is beneath anyone else regardless of their status in life.” She feels a sense of accomplish-ment through her volunteer work and being kind and courteous to others.

Debra Roberts joined RSVP in September 2016 and currently volunteers with The Merry Stitchers. The group knits and crochets various cold-weather items such as blankets, shawls, mittens, hats, and socks. The group then donates their handmade items to organizations who serve individuals in need. Debra loves volunteering because it gives her the chance to helpothers. She looks at volunteering and other tasks as something fun to do. She stated, “If you think about it as something fun and not as a job, the time goes by quicker and you have more fun.” She enjoys getting together with the Merry Stitchers to talk and exchange crochet and knitting patterns. Debra considers her children and her family to be her greatest accomplishment in life and is grateful and blessed that she has survived the COVID-19 pandemic with no issues thus far.

In years past RSVP has honored Presidential Lifetime Achievement awardees at their annual recognition luncheon each September. The annual recognition allows RSVP to publicly thank and acknowledge the volunteers for their continued dedication, the many service hours they contribute and the positive impact their actions make in the community. In addition to RSVP volunteerscommunity nonprofit organizations, local businesses, service groups and clubs, dignitaries andcommunity members all share in a celebratory dinner, live entertainment, keynote speakers, raffles, door prizes, and pay tribute to an outstanding group of RSVP volunteers.

Unfortunately, this year’s event (which would have been the organization’s 47th) was cancelled due to COVID-19 health and safety concerns. To commemorate this year's achievements and milestones, RSVP volunteers will receive a unique 2020 Volunteer Recognition Yearbook, titled “Volunteers Hold all the Cards”.

In addition to recruiting, placing and supporting volunteers, RSVP offers Mature Living, a freeIn addition to recruiting, placing and supporting volunteers, RSVP offers Mature Living, a freebi-monthly newsletter with news and information that is national and local in scope and of interest to older Americans. For more information about RSVP or to receive Mature Living, contact RSVP at 315-312-2317 or email: [email protected]. Part of a nationwide network of Senior Corps programs, RSVP is a federal initiative of the Corporation for National and Community Service and is sponsored by New York

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