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Youth-in-Action celebrates its first year back with the award of the scholarship

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Michael Oleksyn/Daily Herald. Back (from left) Alexa Golding, Nandini Katri, Iseoluwa Bamimore, Sara Olsen and Laurelle Androsoff received Victoria Hospital scholarships and front (from left) Jemima Jacy Alasagas and Karstin Soucy received Hannah and Hudson scholarships at the Youth in Action graduation at Pineview Terrace Lodge on Thursday.

The Saskatchewan Health Authority's Youth in Action volunteer program officially concluded its first year of return on Thursday with a program at Pineview Terrace Lodge.
The program was relaunched in October 2023, when the volunteer service welcomed its first group of youth volunteers since the class of 2019.
The 2019 cohort closed in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Three of the students in this year's cohort volunteered in 8th grade and returned to volunteer in 2023-24.
Janelle Senga, volunteer services manager at SHA North, said the program is also a great opportunity for local youth and residents.
“(This) is an opportunity for the youth of the community to come into the SHA facilities, work with some of the people who live in nursing homes and allow them to experience the hospital environment in a safe and friendly way and just get some experience in the hospital.
“We felt very comfortable and will do this in a safe and friendly manner,” explains Senga.
In the first year after returning, 70 youth volunteered at Victoria Hospital, Herb Bassett Home and Pineview Terrace Lodge. By the end of this month, they had completed 2,780 hours of volunteer work.
Charlene Bernard was the group's volunteer coordinator. She said many students simply wanted to give back to the community.
“They usually came in the same group every week, so we had between 12 and 20 children depending on the day,” said Bernard. “It fluctuated and then often people came
more than one day a week, and some, if they couldn't make it one day, came another.
“They had their small group, but also got to know all the other groups a little.
“It’s great for kids who are interested in healthcare and are interested in gaining work experience and putting something on their resume,” Senga added.
The program includes students from the Saskatchewan Rivers School and Prince Albert Catholic School Division. Both divisions have set up 30 volunteering courses for credit. The program also included 18 youth from Big River, Birch Hills, Canwood, Cudworth, Hafford,
Kinistino, Leask, Leoville and Spiritwood volunteer at local facilities and this group contributed over 150 hours of volunteer work.
“We are happy to help and are happy to reserve hours for students who are seeking this certificate of achievement,” said Senga.
According to Bernard, many of the students have already completed half of their credits.
At the ceremony, all volunteers were presented with certificates for the number of hours they completed and seven 12th grade students received scholarships.
The Hannah and Hudson Scholarships, sponsored by Joe and Bev Remai, were awarded to Jemima Jacy Alasagas of Prince Albert and Karstin Soucy of Leoville.
Five Victoria Hospital scholarships, donated by the former Victoria Hospital Ladies Auxillary and Burkitt's Floral, were awarded to Laurel Androsoff, Iseoluwa Bamimore, Alexa Golding and Nandini Khatri of Prince Albert and Sara Olsen of Big River.
To receive a scholarship, students submitted an essay about their goals and their experience with the Youth in Action program. The selection was based on the applicant's number of hours, attendance independence, initiative, enthusiasm, leadership skills, interpersonal skills, professionalism, personal growth, and financial need.
According to Senga, selecting the scholarship recipients was a challenge because there were so many worthy students.
“We created a rubric and looked at things like leadership, demonstrated growth throughout the year, attendance, attitude and professionalism,” Senga explained. “We looked at a whole range of categories and chose our recipients from there.”
Senga said it was a great experience this year and the staff were grateful to all the young volunteers. Bernard said it was a great experience for them too.
“For me, this was my first year as a youth leader and also my first year back in the program, and it was fun learning together,” Bernard said.
If youth ages 14-18 are interested in volunteering with Youth-in-Action in fall 2024, please contact Volunteer Services in Prince Albert at 306-765-6119 or [email protected] for more information.
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