Every year, hundreds of volunteers donate countless hours of their time to help the community.
They ask nothing in return, but Nicole McCoy will offer a simple "thank you" Monday during Community Connection’s annual awards ceremony at Tam’s Backstage.
“Volunteerism is a naturally selfless task, and so these volunteers are really making a tremendous change in our community and we just want to celebrate them,” said McCoy, executive director of the organization.
Awards will honor the year’s most generous volunteers from Forsyth’s youth, corporations, small businesses, civic groups and community in general.
Last year, Brian and Kelly Tam were honored as a community partner for holding the annual event at no cost in their restaurant.
Now in its fourth year, the gathering doubles as a fundraiser for the United Way agency. Last year, McCoy said the group raised about $3,500.
“It would be great to have the same amount,” she said. “What’s fantastic is usually those that come out will include a little extra in their checks and that helps us to raise a little more money.”
Community Connection's top priorities are education, health and wellness issues and fighting child abuse and neglect.
The organization works with nonprofits as a networking resource, helping them identify areas of concern and how services can be improved to meet the needs of each child and family in the community.
Money raised will go toward the organization’s programs, including Hands on Forsyth, which links people to volunteer opportunities throughout the community.
During the past year, the organization surpassed 2,000 registered volunteers and met a goal of 2,500 volunteers in the database. The organization also exceeded 15,000 volunteer hours last year.
Among those who donated time were Stacy and Bobby Amos of Bobby Amos Waterworks. The couple received the Small Business Volunteer of the Year Award during last year’s event after volunteering its plumbing services for low-income seniors and families.
“We were very surprised,” Stacy Amos said. “We don’t expect anything ... we just do it because we love to help people.
“If we can’t get up and help somebody during the day, it just doesn’t seem worth it.”
The company doesn’t track its volunteer hours, but Stacy Amos said they’ve probably worked about 20 plumbing jobs for low-income seniors and veterans over the past year.
McCoy said the event will honor top volunteers, but also recognize everyone who donates time to the community.
“So many volunteers contribute time every day," McCoy said. “We wanted to be able to recognize those volunteers.”