Governor Pat Quinn and the Serve Illinois Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service today announced Illinoisans may now submit nominations for the Governor's Volunteer Service Awards. The awards recognize volunteers who have made a difference in Illinois and highlight the importance of volunteerism and community service.
"Every day in Illinois, thousands of volunteers donate their time and talents to help others and to build stronger communities," said Governor Quinn. "We are looking for nominees whose initiative, creativity and energy has made a positive change and has set an example for others."
Individual awards will be provided to one youth age 18 and under, one adult age 19-54, and one retiree/senior age 55 and older in each of the commission's five service regions across the state (Northeast, Northwest, East Central, West Central and Southern Illinois).
The Governor's Volunteer Service Awards will focus on five areas: Economic Opportunity, Education, Environmental Conservation, Health and Veterans' Affairs.
Nomination forms may be downloaded at www.serve.illinois.gov. Nominations will be accepted through March 19, and winners will be notified by April 2. A panel of judges from across the state will select the award recipients. Governor Quinn and the Serve Illinois Commission will host a luncheon to honor recipients on April 12 at the Executive Mansion in Springfield.
The Serve Illinois Commission is a 25-member, bi-partisan board appointed by the Governor and administered by the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS). Its mission is to improve Illinois communities by enhancing traditional volunteer activities and supporting national service programs, including the Illinois AmeriCorps program.
"All citizens have an opportunity to recognize their ability and help strengthen their communities through voluntary service," said IDHS Secretary Michelle R. B. Saddler. "Through Serve Illinois, we hope to expand volunteerism throughout rural, suburban and urban Illinois, and involve people of all backgrounds, cultures and ages."