Manitoba Lieutenant Governor

Lieutenant Governor of Manitoba

The Honourable Anita R. Neville, P.C., O.M.

Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers Award Ceremony

Remarks by

The Honourable Anita Neville, P.C., O.M.

Lieutenant Governor of Manitoba


Government House

Thursday, September 28, 2023, 5:00 p.m.

(please check against delivery)


Friends and volunteers, welcome to Government House and this celebration of the gift of time, effort and vision.

As Lieutenant Governor of Manitoba, I am pleased to welcome you here in the heart of Treaty One land, and in the heartland of the Red River Metis.

As we build and sustain healthy and diverse communities across Manitoba, we acknowledge that this province is the ancestral and the present-day home of the Anishinaabe, Cree, Dakota, Dene, Metis and Inuit.

For all of us, our work of building a province we can be proud of includes listening and learning, advancing understanding and working for opportunity, and healing for all.

Time is one treasure we all possess and, like all things of great value, it’s a limited resource.

We spend our time to acquire the things we need for daily life and maintain our homes and our health. We spend it to experience those things that bring us joy and that recharge our spirits.

And in a fast-paced world of work and family and social commitments, we often feel we don’t have enough of it.

So to spend that precious treasure of time on activities designed to benefit complete strangers is a special kind of generosity.

And that is the generosity – a generosity of spirit – that we are celebrating today with the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers.

The Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers is the highest honour for volunteer service in Canada. It was established in 2016 and evolved from the Governor General’s Caring Canadian Award, which was established in 1995.

The Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers recognizes Canadians for their unpaid, sustained and significant contributions of time and energy to community.

“Sustained” typically means 10 years or more – with exceptions for younger volunteers who have made significant volunteer contributions. Many recipients of this medal have been active volunteers for considerably longer.

Their contributions reach into every aspect of life. They keep festivals, cultural organizations and sports events humming. They provide services in schools and hospitals. They make communities safer and healthier. They are mentors for youth and friends to seniors. They build and sustain vital community resources.

On behalf of Her Excellency, Mary Simon, Governor General of Canada, I thank all of today’s award recipients for the gift of enthusiasm, the gift of problem-solving, the gift of empathy … and the gift of time.

Thank you. Merci. Meegwich.