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Karen Bridge

Winner, Chair’s Award

Volunteer, Ottawa-Carleton Virtual Secondary School (OCV), Ridgemont High School

Karen Bridge is a caring and dependable volunteer who dedicates her time to elementary, secondary, and OCV schools within the OCDSB. While she is currently volunteering with English as a Second Language (ESL) classes at OCV Secondary, she has spent the past 5 years supporting ESL and ELD classes at Ridgemont High School, Charles H. Hulse Public School, and Queen Mary Public School. She is patient, kind and knowledgeable, and often spends up to 4 days per week volunteering at schools! Karen shows compassionate support for some of the most vulnerable students, and is described as reliable, dedicated, kind, and a pleasure to work with. Congratulations Karen, recipient of the 2020-2021 Chair’s Award!

Dr. Aliaa Dakroury

Winner, Excellence in Equity Community Award

School Council Co-Chair, OCV Secondary School

Dr. Aliaa Dakroury has been a dedicated volunteer with the OCDSB since 2001. Her willingness to lend a hand and serve the community in whatever way she can is exemplary, and she always puts students' interests at the heart of her work. As School Council Co-Chair at the OCV Secondary School, she has played a crucial role in bringing together a parent-guided team that works hard to ensure student success. She facilitates excellent communication between educators and parents, shares creative ideas to improve online learning, and advocates passionately for students. Aliaa is committed to inclusion and diversity, and her ideas promote wellbeing and success for students, families, and the wider community. She listens attentively to the needs and concerns of staff, helping them to feel empowered and excited to improve their school. Those who work and volunteer alongside Aliaa are grateful for her organizational skills, work ethic, and big heart. Congratulations Aliaa, winner of the 2020-2021 Excellence in Equity Community Award!

Carolyn Kropp

Winner, Distinguished School Council Award

Parent Council Co-Chair, Pleasant Park School

Carolyn Kropp has been involved with the parent council at Pleasant Park Public School for 16 years, and has also been a member of the Vincent Massey Public School and Hillcrest High School Councils. She always jumps in wherever necessary, whether it’s raising funds to replace the junior play structure, volunteering in classes, chaperoning field trips, helping with pizza and book sales, or supporting one of the school’s many plays. Carolyn is now completing her 5th year as co-chair of Parent Council, where she has always strived for inclusivity. She was a founding member of Mámawi Together, which grew out of an Indigenous awareness initiative at Pleasant Park and led to the instalment of a permanent school art display celebrating Indigenous culture. Carolyn’s commitment to the school, neighbourhood and broader community is exemplified in her lasting legacy as a volunteer. Congratulations Carolyn, winner of the 2020-2021 Distinguished School Council Award!

Kahmaria Pingue

Winner, Community Partnership Award

Parents for Diversity, OCDSB Advisory Committee on Equity

Kahmaria Pingue is a dedicated volunteer who works diligently to ensure all students, staff members, and families can feel heard and represented in their schools. She serves thoughtfully and compassionately on Parents for Diversity, a collective of parents committed to achieving inclusive and non-discriminatory learning environments that allow children to fulfill their true potential. She also brings her strong equity-oriented commitments to the OCDSB's Advisory Committee on Equity (ACE), sharing insight, expertise and experiences with vulnerability and a collaborative spirit. Those who work alongside Kahmaria are glad to be able to honour her long-standing efforts and actions to support racialised students and families within the OCDSB. Congratulations Kahmaria, winner of the 2020-2021 Community Partnership Award!

Jacquie Samuels

Winner, OCDSB Community Award

Volunteer, OCV Schools

Jacquie Samuels is a volunteer superstar who has undertaken three immense responsibilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. First, she is the creator and administrator of a parent-run Facebook group for OCV students and families, where she has spent countless hours compiling, reviewing and sharing information from official sources. Second, she launched the Ottawa Reading Buddy group, which pairs younger readers with secondary students and therapy dogs to read virtually together. Third, she is also responsible for a fun Facebook group that allows local OCDSB children to play Minecraft Education together! Jacquie has dedicated so much time and energy to supporting students this year, all while balancing her own work and her own children's online learning, and families across the District are grateful! Congratulations Jacquie, recipient of the 2020-2021 OCDSB Community Award!

Robert Weir

Winner, Volunteer of the Year Award

ELD Volunteer, Pinecrest Public School

Robert Weir has been volunteering in English Language Development (ELD) classes at Pinecrest Public School for many years, regularly committing three mornings each week to the classroom. He has helped lead small guided reading groups and has provided individualized support in math, and often helps out with special events as well! Robert has also offered his support to numerous exciting field trips, whether they are at museums, outdoor education centres, or other engaging destinations. This year, Robert has continued to volunteer every week by leading virtual reading groups on Google Meet! Whether in the classroom or virtually, his dedicated support is invaluable and allows for more teacher-student time in differentiated small groups, in order to meet students' diverse needs. Robert is a genuinely caring and encouraging volunteer, and has had a tremendously positive impact on student learning and well-being for some of Pinecrest Public School’s most vulnerable students! Congratulations Robert, recipient of the 2020-2021 Volunteer of the Year Award!