Spirits were high on October 18, at Renascent’s 2022 Guardian Angel donor recognition event. Over 100 attendees celebrated both the generosity of donors and the recipients of two major awards in Renascent’s first in-person award celebration since before the COVID-19 pandemic.
“COVID-19 has posed some nearly insurmountable challenges for the communities we serve,” noted Renascent CEO, Laura Bhoi. “It has exasperated the addiction and mental health crisis, resulting in growing numbers of people in desperate situations and needing help.”
“Our donors help bridge the gap between our government funding and the cost of delivering essential care. It is through the support of donors that we have been able to ensure quality treatment is provided to those in need, without cost being a barrier. We are beyond grateful for our donors’ continued generous support,” added Laura.
For event sponsors and long-time Renascent champions Stephen and Arlene Waymire, giving is part of the circle of recovery. Through gifts of philanthropy, the couple aims to deliver and magnify the hope of a bright future for communities across Ontario for generations to come.
As part of the celebration, a number of awards were presented in recognition of outstanding service.
Yielding Family Legacy Recovery Awards are given annually in honour of Dr. Ed Yielding, former Medical Director at Renascent, his wife (and assistant) Bobby, and their daughter Linda. They recognize the excellence, commitment and impact of Renascent staff, volunteers, board members or donors. There is an open nomination process for these awards every year. This year, an unprecedented six Yielding Awards were presented to these worthy recipients:
- David Elliot, who has helped thousands of men change their lives as both a Spiritual Consultant and Primary Care Counsellor at Renascent;
- Bill Smith, a longstanding Renascent volunteer and tireless recovery advocate;
- Lynn Evans, a Renascent Addictions Counsellor who ensures programming is therapeutic through artful expressions;
- Team Renascent, in recognition of every Renascent team member for their extraordinary service and teamwork during a most difficult period. Across every team of the organization, team members contributed incredible dedication, compassion and perseverance, in delivering critical treatment to those suffering from addiction.
- Renascent’s Kitchen Teams, who play a critical nourishing role in the recovery of our clients and staff at our three inpatient treatment centres; and
- Renascent’s Client Care Access and Engagement Team, who pivoted during COVID-19 to create a fully virtual team without any disruption to clients.
The Peter Armstrong Community Award of Excellence recognizes community members, partners and organizations that have made strong contributions to the field of addiction and have advanced care for those in need of recovery. There is an open nomination process for these awards every year. This year, Armstrong awards were awarded to two exceptional recipients:
- Women’s College Hospital Scheduling COVID-19 Assessment Centre team, whose extraordinary support facilitated rapid access to PCR Tests to help combat the spread of COVID-19; and
- Jordan Anderson, Executive Director of Alpha House, founding member of Narcotics Anonymous – Durham Region, and long-time advocate for Overdose Awareness Day, for his tireless work to break down barriers for people struggling with addiction.