NRTA: AARP’s Educator Community is pleased to announce that the Big Sky Unit, representing retired educators in Gallatin and Park counties, is a recipient of this year’s NRTA With Our Youth! Excellence Awards.
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Award recipients were chosen for outstanding service to youth in the state, local and individual categories by an independent selection panel. The Big Sky Unit received one of three Excellence Awards in the local category.
Members of the Big Sky Unit contributed 3,005 volunteer hours of service to youth in their communities. Activities included donating to a food bank as well as donating children’s books to individuals and schools; volunteering at schools – from preschool to college – the public library, health fairs, museums and churches. Members also staffed innovative programs such as “Destination Imagination” which gives youth an opportunity to use creative problem-solving strategies. Indirect service efforts included scholarship donations, travel money, library book funds, small school supplies and providing legislative reports on current educational issues.
“Retired educators and school personnel are unsung heroes in their communities. They continue to give of their time and expertise even after leaving the classroom. It is an honor to celebrate the skills, passion and commitment of the members of the Big Sky Unit with an NRTA With Our Youth! Excellence Award,” stated Megan Hookey, Vice President of NRTA: AARP’s Educator Community.
“It is an incredible honor to be selected as a recipient of the national With Our Youth!’ Excellence Award – the highest recognition a retired educator unit may receive,” said Karen Richardson, Executive Director of the Montana Retired Educators Association. “To be chosen as one of three recipients out of nominees from across the entire country is a mark of distinction that brings with it the responsibility to continue to provide outstanding service to youth in our state and excellence in volunteerism and community service. Congratulations to the Big Sky Unit on winning this prestigious award – being recognized and rewarded at this level is truly an outstanding achievement.”