5:30 p.m., April 27)
Our Troops founder receives United Way award
By Fred Sherwin
Dixon was pleasantly surprised to receive
the United Way Community Builder Award during
an impromptu presentation ceremony at the
Amica at Bearbrook retirement residence on
Thursday. Fred Sherwin/Photo
Dixon was minding her own business as the community relations
manager at the Amica at Bearbrook retirement residence
in Blackburn Hamlet on Thursday when she became the subject
of a surprise visit from the United Way.
founder of the Support Our Troops flag campaign was presented
with a Community Builder Award for her efforts which connected
everyday people with Canadian troops serving in Afghanistan.
was inspired to launch the campaign five years ago when
she was watching TV and saw a report about two children
who lost their father while he was serving in the war-torn
idea was to design a large flag and send it across Canada
to have it signed by everyday Canadians and celebrities
with messages of support. The flag made a stop at the
Greater Orléans Canada Day Celebration on Petrie Island,
as well as the Orléans Oktoberfest.
signed the flag was sent to the Canadian Forces base in
Kandahar in 2009 were it was given a place of honour.
A second flag was signed and sent to the Canadian peacekeeping
mission in the Sinai.
also sold Support Our Troops car window flags and raised
$15,000 which was given to military family resource centres.
was nominated for the award by her friend and Gloucester
Resource Centre volunteer coordinator Gayle Downing.
piece that she did with the military, raising that money
for them and getting that flag signed and having it flying
in Afghanistan, a lot of people in this community didn't
know that she did that," said Downing.
humble and still shocked Dixon was grateful for the award
which came as a total surprise.
don't do things to get awards, I do things because of
compassion to help other people, and the military people
are the ones that I really have the most compassion for,"
said Dixon who is a native of P.E.I.
come from a family with eight siblings who looked after
each other. We were raised to give back. You went out
and worked and gave to the family. After I moved to Ottawa,
I realized people here have the same attitude of giving
back. This community gives back so much. It's extremely
Dixon was called out of her office to go to the Amica
dining room she thought she was going to a resident's
birthday celebration, It wasn't until she saw her daughter
and several friends who wouldn't normally be there that
she started to question what was going on.
was a total surprise. I didn't have a clue," said
story was made possible thanks to their generous support
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