Dr. Aisha Sherzi, Rabbi Menachem Blum Among OCDSB Honourees

The Ottawa-Carleton District School Board honoured volunteers throughout the city May 28 by celebrating recipients of its 2022-23 Community Recognition Awards.

The OCDSB prefaced the awards by stating that volunteers play an important role in our children’s education today – their life experiences, knowledge, and expertise can have a tremendous impact in the classroom and beyond. They are valued partners who facilitate interaction and co-operation between the school and wider community for the benefit of all students. This year, volunteers have continued to enrich student learning, provide leadership in OCDSB School Councils, supporting staff and programming, and so much more.

The Board’s Excellence in Equity Award was presented to Dr. Aisha Sherzi and Rabbi Menachem Blum.

“Dr. Sherazi and Rabbi Blum’s 14-year collaboration in conducting groundbreaking workshops has fostered unity between Muslim and Jewish communities. Dr. Sherazi’s leadership in professional development and cultural accommodation within the OCDSB, alongside Rabbi Blum’s commitment to enriching Jewish student life and promoting interfaith dialogue, exemplify unparalleled dedication to inclusivity. Together, they transcend barriers, educate, and empower,” stated the OCDSB.

The Volunteer of the Year Award was presented to Diane Borg of Fielding Drive Public School.

According to the OCDSB, “Diane Borg had been volunteering in OCDSB classrooms through the Ottawa Network for Education (ONFE) since 2018. She shares her love of mathematics by supporting students at the intermediate level who need further support. Every week, she engages the students in learning with a patient and positive approach. Students feel comfortable sharing their ideas and explaining their understanding. Dianne’s passion and commitment to helping youth build a foundational knowledge of mathematics has a lasting positive effect on students. She often goes above and beyond: when teachers have a special experiential project, she comes to school for additional volunteer time. Dianne is described as a kind, supportive, and thoughtful individual, whose care shines through in her smiles and calm demeanour.”

Among the nominees from Barrhaven were Katya Duhamel from Barrhaven Public School and Paul Bourque of Half Moon Bay Public School.

Diana Mills won the Chair’s Award for her work with the Parent Involvement Committee.

Cheryl Parrott of the Hintonburg Community Association won the Community Award for her work with Devonshire Community Public School.

The Centre for Resilience and Social Development won the Community Partnership Award.

Ther Distinguished School Council Service Award went to Mike Warriner of Severn Avenue Public School. Also nominated from Barrhaven were Crytal Logan of Jockvale Elementary School, Jennifer Roberts of John McCrae Secondary School, and Paula Bourque of Half Moon Bay Public School.

Featured Image: Dr. Aisha Sherzi and Rabbi Menachem Blum, pictured with OCDSB Barrhaven Trustee Donna Blackburn, were presented with the board’s Excellence in Equity Award.