Donna Bartlett is the RDOS' Volunteer of the Month of November for her work over the last 12 years in Keremeos. (Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen)

Keremeos volunteer recognized for 12 years of Similkameen ice rink support

Donna Bartlett helped start a society to improve access to the rink

More than 12 years of volunteering at the Similkameen Rec Centre’s ice rink has gotten Donna Bartlett the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen’s recognition.

Bartlett has been volunteering since the 2009-10 skating season and still plays a role in maintaining the programs at the rink.

Growing up, Bartlett’s children loved public skating and mites hockey, and she realized the facility could be improved by expanding its programs and services. She saw that equipment resources were limited and the programs offered at the rink were heavily dependent on volunteer support.

With the help of a few other parents, she established the “Friends of the Keremeos Skating Rink,” a registered society that enabled important services at the rink including drop-in hockey for older kids, skating lessons, and skate sharpening. This support also improved access to the rink by providing community members with hockey equipment, subsidized fees, and free skating passes.

“Thank you for stepping up, your generous spirit, and your service to this beautiful area we call the Similkameen,” said Jason Wiebe, Keremeos’ Mayor. “Volunteerism is the heartbeat of any community, and without the diligent and resourceful work of our incredible volunteers, I cannot think of a single event in our area that would exist.”

Bartlett has found great joy in seeing local kids learn to skate and participants enjoy public skating and hockey in their own backyard. She has also inspired others in the community to join her in volunteering their time at the rink.

Volunteerism is critical in helping RDOS Recreation strive to promote its goal of “Healthy Individuals and Communities,” and to find out about opportunities to volunteer you can visit the RDOS’ website.

READ ALSO: Vote count stagnant in Keremeos despite growing population

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