Ian Chovil speaks with enormous eloquence and honesty about his personal experiences with mental illness. Ian began experiencing the symptoms of schizophrenia in his late teens and was eventually diagnosed and received treatment after 15 years.
As the Homewood’s Consumer Consultant, Ian has developed a high school awareness project to facilitate early awareness and to dispel the stigma associated with mental health issues. He has talked to over 1000 students with the hope that he may save someone else the painful years that he experienced.
Ian’s other contributions to the field of mental health include fundraising for programs and participating in the Guelph Police Education and Awareness Program about Mental Health Issues. Of particular note is the immensely successful web site that Ian has developed on schizophrenia.
Ian challenges us to think differently about mental health issues, and challenges us to face our misconceptions and assumptions about mentally ill people.
Anne is an energetic and passionate Co-ordinator of the Action Read Community Centre. She started Action Read in 1991 to create a literacy group for women and in 1997, she became Program Co-ordinator.
Action Read focuses its programs on the needs of adults; hundreds of volunteers provide one-on-one tutoring to adults to help them move closer to their goals of employment, self-sufficiency and dignity in a complex and literate world.
Anne works with people who face many other challenges in addition to the lack of literacy skills. She has worked for much of her career to help people gain pride, confidence and employment skills. Her contributions help people gain greater control over their own lives and make an important impact on our community as a whole
Charlie’s record of service to the citizens of Guelph and Wellington County is truly extraordinary. He has been a member of the Rotary Club of Guelph since 1967 and has been involved with Rotary International, for whom he served as Club President and later as District Governor.
His accomplishments are many: he led a citizen’s committee to create a community centre at Shelldale School; he served as a charter member of the Guelph Round Table on the Environment and Economy and helped establish Guelph’s Wet-Dry facility; he served as Chair of the Guelph General Hospital Board at the time agreement was reached for one acute care hospital and one long term care hospital. His latest health care initiative is the establishment of a stroke recovery program for all of Guelph and Wellington County.
Charlie has been involved with Crime Stoppers of Wellington County, Guelph Extend-a-Family, the Guelph and Golden Triangle Figure Skating Clubs, the Guelph Community Foundation, and Abbeyfield House of Guelph and Guelph Christian Homes. He has been a leader at the Guelph Chamber of Commerce. And, he co-chairs Guelph’s very successful “Communities in Bloom” activities.
Virtually every aspect of the Guelph community has felt the impact of Charlie’s outstanding commitment and leadership.
Rita has worked for the City of Guelph for the past 55 years – 23 of those years were served on a volunteer basis.
If you ever want to find Rita, you need look no further than one of the local hockey arenas, baseball diamonds or any other City event that is happening.
Rita has volunteered with Guelph Minor Hockey Association including serving as President. She has been a Board member and Chairperson of the Selection Committee for the Sports Hall of Fame. She currently acts as an Ambassador for the Guelph Storm and serves on the Executive of the Guelph Jr. B’s.
Over the years, she has taken many a hockey player under her wing. She has listened to, fed, and cared for these players while they have been many miles away from home.
There have been other community-based projects that have attracted Rita’s energy, including the construction of the covered bridge and the Habitat for Humanity House on Huron Street.
Rita’s pride and spirit for our community shine through in everything she does.