Awards for going the extra mile in style


Alberta’s 2014 Community Justice Awards

Across the province, there are thousands of dedicated community workers, volunteers and justice professionals who work tirelessly to help ensure Albertans can continue to live in safe and fair neighbourhoods. Today, we celebrated some of their outstanding achievements at the 2014 Alberta Community Justice Awards.

One of the people honoured at the ceremony, co-hosted by JSG and Lethbridge Regional Police Service, was Alex Nanji. About seven years ago, Nanji saw a group of youth facing challenges such as poverty, language barriers and a lack of positive role models. So he decided to set up an after school sports program to help the youth focus on education and making good choices.

Ceremony participants

“His leadership and enthusiasm truly made a difference,” said director of crime prevention and restorative justice at JSG Carsten Erbe. “Nanji’s work led to the creation of an anti-gang hotline as well as a youth referral service.”

Nanji, a City of Calgary employee, was one of 13 individual Albertans, police officers and community organizations recognized at the awards in Calgary. Another person honoured was Chelsea Hawrelak, of KARE Victim Services. Project KARE reinforces the need to examine the deaths of vulnerable missing persons. Hawrelak spends much time with victims’ families, providing support even after the case has been solved. She ensures proper spiritual care of those she works with and places a high priority on the cultural needs of others.

“Victims deserve to be treated with dignity, compassion and respect and this is something Hawrelak has done,” said Erbe. “She works hard to help victims heal and provide them with something that is extremely important – hope.”

Angie Dedrick was recognized for her community leadership in St. Albert. Dedrick worked with youth to create the Community Involved Adolescents Group and helped seniors and community partners build a Seniors Resource Centre. She also played a part in establishing programs such as the Celebrating Good Neighbours initiative.

Among the community organizations celebrated were the Alex (Pathways to Housing) in Calgary. The program provides vulnerable people with a safe place to live and helps them get treatment for things such as mental illness and addiction issues.

“Alberta’s Community Justice Awards provide us with the opportunity to highlight these dedicated individuals and organizations,” said Erbe. “Their work is proof that excellent ideas come from all sectors, all ages and all areas. They are an inspiration to all Albertans.”

Here is a link to the program guide. Below is a full list of the recipients in each category.

Leadership
Insp. Graham Abela
Alyx Nanji

Service Enhancement
The Alex (Pathways to Housing)
Myrtle Wegner

Community Mobilization
Angie Dedrick
Chelsea Hawrelak

Partnerships and Collaboration
Vanessa Omeasoo
Cpl. Trevor Cardinal
Cpl. Colette Zazulak
Restorative Action for Transformation (RAFT)

Innovation
McMan Youth Family and Community Services Association
Provincial Electricity Physical Security (PEPS) Working Group
Dean Young and St. Sgt. Jason Bobrowich

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