Citizen of the Year: Melani Bastians
Owner of Caribbean Vibes and The Green Eatery restaurants, Melani started an initiative which takes rescued food from community partners and cooks hot meals with the local volunteers. No One Goes Hungry has grown exponentially in the past 5 months, feeding over 14,517 meals from July 2020 until the end of March 2021…and so many more by now! Her goals are to work with different business owners in Halton to get Halton Hunger free in the next few years, and to provide food education to families to get them food secure. Also, at Caribbean Vibes, Melani has a community fridge. Any time the restaurant is open, ANYONE can come get a bag of fresh produce, frozen meals, meats, dairy, and bread. Melani is the bridge to her fellow Miltonians.
Melani also supports many organizations in Milton like Halton Women’s Place, Milton District Hospital Foundation, Darling Home for Kids, Townsend Smith Foundation, many churches with hot food and food bags, Optimist Club, mentorship programs, free meals program, and youth programs. She has been volunteering in Milton since 2004.
Melani is always saying yes to anything that makes Milton a better place to live for our young generation, including providing many volunteer hours for high school students.
Lifetime Achievement: Cindy Lunau
Cindy was a very active member of the Milton community, including serving on Town Council for 21 years. Her many accomplishments include:
- Friends of Milton Hospital whose public awareness and lobbying activities were an important factor is securing provincial permission for the recent expansion of Milton Hospital.
- Representing the Town of Milton on the Racetrack Mayors’ Task Force that negotiated a share of the OLG Slots revenue for Milton, which has realized well over $100 Million for Town projects, and advocated for a portion of those funds to establish and maintain the Milton Community Fund – the only racetrack community to establish such a fund.
- Instrumental in the founding of the Milton Community Resource Centre, the non-profit organization that delivers many important services to the families of Milton. Milton Community & Information Services, of which Cindy was the chair, merged with Milton Children & Youth in 1996 to create MCRC.
- Milton District Hospital/Halton Healthcare – Served on Halton Healthcare Board of Directors for 20 years. Worked with the Physician Recruitment Task Force bringing new doctors to Milton.
- Was the impetus for the creation of the Fine Arts Society of Milton mural in the hospital and advocated for local art to be featured on the walls with artist credits.
- A member CABA (Campbellville Area Business Assoc) and its replacement DCCA (Destination Campbellville Community Association) for 30+ years. Has long been a supporter of the rural community fighting for things like rebuilding the horse industry, promoting agriculture, and protecting the rights of rural property owners.
- Sat on the Brookville School Council for over 30 years, first as a parent and then as the community representative.
- Member of NBC (Nassagaweya Broadband Committee) which partnered with the Town for the first high speed internet in rural Milton. Delivered the proposal to the Provincial Government via covered wagon. Appeared before the CRTC advocating for improved service in rural areas.
- Worked with residents on Quarry issues: 2004-2013: FORCE Stop the Quarry (St. Mary’s) on Milborough Line, 2014-2019: CRC’s opposition to the Hidden Quarry which would affect north Nassagaweya, 2018-2019: ACTION Milton’s opposition to the Campbellville Quarry. For more than a decade: Member of the Citizen’s Advisory Panel for the Dufferin Quarry & supporter of rehabilitation projects for this quarry.
- Conservation Halton – Served on the Conservation Halton Board of Directors for 8 years. In the 1990’s was a member of the Conservation Halton Foundation which produced their classic book “Halton Rising, Wild, and Beckoning.
- Nassagaweya Historical Society – A longtime member. Produced a series of 12 “Rural Roots” photo features for the Canadian Champion. Member of Heritage Milton for 21 years.
For well over a decade, Cindy also collects leftover produce from the Farmers Market for distribution to charities and families in need.
Joyce Hagevik Volunteers of the Year: Kim Macdonald & Ed Miedzybrocki
Kim and Ed are not only Scout leaders in Milton, but also have been very involved in School Parents Councils, the Milton Optimist Club, Milton Santa Claus Parade, the Milton Haunted House and Deborah’s House where Ed is the Chair of the Board.
Without their volunteer hours in these organizations, many would not be able to operate.
- 7th Milton Scouts Commissioner
- Milton Beavers leaders
- Deborah’s House Chair
- Santa Claus Parade lead marshal 5+ years
- Milton Haunted house organizer 5+ years.
Community Builder: Milton Strong – Jeffrey Pereira and Paula Rouselle
With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, Jeffrey Pereira and fellow Miltonian Paula Rousselle founded the Facebook Group “#miltonstrong – Support for your local businesses”.
Milton Strong was developed to have an online forum to support small businesses and to help local businesses promote, communicate, and continue to make sales in any way possible. It became a way to introduce new businesses that Milton residents may not know.
Milton Strong now boasts 14, 300 members.
The collective has even grown beyond its original Facebook group with members purchasing and displaying physical #MiltonStrong lawn signs. Fundraising initiatives, including the sale of #MiltonStrong t-shirts, supported local makers and raised funds for The Milton District Hospital. Over $8000 was raised to contribute to the purchase of essential equipment required by the Hospital.
This town will continue to get stronger and stronger because we are… #MiltonStrong”