The Peach family of Kentville, Nova Scotia was recently recognized as the provincial Family Volunteers of the Year by the Honourable Stephen McNeil, Premier of Nova Scotia and by Mayor Dave Corkum of their town of Kentville.
The parents, Lorne and Crystal, and their two children, Christopher (10) and Abigail (7), logged more than 900 service hours in 2013 organizing a clothing drive and working at events, such as community playground and trail clean up, coaching and score-keeping at volleyball tournaments and singing at seniors' facilities.
The Peaches organized a winter outerwear drive for students and families at Kings County Academy. Outerwear and boots were collected during October and November from the school community and members of the church. Then they held a recycle night where families in the Kings County Academy community could come and get needed winter outerwear for members of their family.
Another service project the Peach family organized was a playground and trail clean up in the Kentville area. Before the clean up, the family surveyed trails in their community to see which areas needed the most attention. They organized 70 volunteers of Church and community members into teams and assigned each a playground or section of a trail to clean up. After all teams were finished, they biked the trails to ensure all work had been completed, garbage picked up and removed from the trails. Following the clean-up, they had a free barbeque organized for the volunteers.
The parents, Lorne and Crystal, were also active leaders in Scouts Canada and Girl Guides of Canada respectively.
In cooperation with the Kentville Community Association and the parents' volleyball expertise, they implemented and coached about 50 grade 4 - 6 students in the first mini volleyball program. Their family also organized, advertised and ran multiple charity volleyball tournaments for adults in order to raise money for their community's athletic program that raised thousands of dollars to benefit the over 600 students in the association.
Under the direction of the mother who organized and directed the weekly practices, their family participated in and hosted a free Christmas cantata for the members of the community. Their family also joined with other participants at several seniors' facilities to sing a variety of Christmas, maritime and campfire songs including popular old time music and hymns. Crystal played the piano and she and son Christopher also performed solos at some.
Crystal Peach said, “We volunteer because we feel it’s important to contribute to the communities where we live, work and play, so that everyone benefits. There are always ways that each of us, as individuals and families, can help. We have been blessed to be in a position where we can use our talents to help others and feel it is our duty to do so.