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January 14, 2013
MP Julian Fantino Encourages Nominations for the Prime Minister’s Volunteer Awards
Vaughan, Ontario, Jan 14, 2013— The Hon. Julian Fantino, Minister of International Cooperation and Member of Parliament for Vaughan, is reminding community members that the call for nominations for the Prime Minister’s Volunteer Awards was recently announced by the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development.

“The Government of Canada is proud of all the Canadians whose voluntary work enriches our communities and exemplifies all that makes Canada such a great country,” said Minister Finley. “The Prime Minister’s Volunteer Awards are a celebration of their leadership, dedication, innovation and expertise.”

The call for nominations is open between December 20, 2012, and March 1, 2013. The regional component recognizes individual volunteers or groups of volunteers, businesses and not-for-profit organizations. The national component is divided into two categories: one for lifelong achievement and one for new volunteers.
Award recipients will be recognized at an award ceremony, and can identify an eligible not-for-profit organization to receive a grant for $5,000 (regional award) or $10,000 (national award).

“The Prime Minister’s Volunteer Awards recognize the contributions of volunteers, businesses and not-for-profit organizations that help make communities stronger,” said Minister Fantino. “There are many deserving award recipients in this region, but someone must nominate them.”

A nominator may be any person or organization with direct knowledge of the nominee’s contribution.

The first recipients of the Prime Minister's Volunteer Awards were recognized at an awards ceremony held on December 14, 2012, in Ottawa.

Visit for more information about the awards and to access the online nomination form.



The Government of Canada is committed to recognizing the enormous contribution volunteers make to Canada. The Prime Minister’s Volunteer Awards were created as a way to annually recognize those who make exceptional contributions as volunteers, including individuals, not-for-profit organizations and businesses.

Almost half of all Canadians (47%) volunteer their time, energy and skills to benefit their communities, with the replacement value of their work estimated at around $14 billion, or the equivalent of nearly 1.1 million full-time jobs. Volunteers are crucial to Canada’s not-for-profit sector, which includes 161,000 registered charities and not-for-profit organizations. Businesses contribute to their communities in many ways as well. For example, in 2010, over half of employees who volunteered said that they had received support to do so from their employer.

The Prime Minister’s Volunteer Awards (PMVAs) consist of 17 awards in total.

Fifteen regional awards—three awards for each of five regions across Canada (Atlantic, Quebec, Ontario, the Prairies, British Columbia and the North):
  • The Community Leader award recognizes individual volunteers or groups of volunteers who have taken a lead role in developing solutions to local challenges.
  • The Business Leader award recognizes businesses that demonstrate social responsibility in their business practices.
  • The Social Innovator award recognizes not-for-profit organizations that demonstrate innovation in addressing social challenges.
Two national awards:
  • The Emerging Leader award recognizes new volunteers who help build stronger communities through leadership, and who have made a positive difference in their community in a short period of time. This award is for those who have volunteered for no more than three years.
  • The Lifelong Achievement award recognizes individuals who have dedicated their life to volunteering and who have inspired other volunteers, led volunteer groups or made other exceptional achievements through volunteering. This award is for those who have volunteered for a period of at least 20 years.

Recipients are selected through a three-step assessment process:
  1. PMVA Secretariat: The Secretariat screens nominations to ensure that they meet the eligibility criteria.
  2. Regional Reviewers: Volunteer representatives from across the country assess eligible nominations based on the assessment criteria, and develop a list of top‑ranked nominations for the National Advisory Committee.
  3. National Advisory Committee: Up to 15 volunteer committee members are selected by the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development (HRSD). Members are from various regions across Canada. The National Advisory Committee assesses the top-ranked nominations and recommends the award winners to the Minister of HRSD for final decision.

Information about the first award recipients can be found at

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