As is true to her open-hearted style, Squamish Helping Hands executive director Maureen Mackell praised others when asked about her recent award.
On Thursday, June 23, the Rotary Club of Squamish presented Mackell with the Paul Harris Fellow Award for her service to the community.
The award is the highest honour that a Rotary Club can bestow on community members.
“Many thanks to Squamish Rotary for this wonderful honour,” Mackell said in an email to The Squamish Chief.
“They do so much for our community, and we are grateful for their constant support. It is heartwarming to receive their acknowledgement for the work being done at Under One Roof and in the community,” she added.
“This is not something that can be done alone, so, with much pride, I would like to share this accolade with the team — the staff, volunteers and partners — who are a collective force. Each and every one of them does their part. Each and every one of them has brought the Under One Roof vision to life. For all of us, our purpose is to reduce harm through connection, provide a safe place to call home and to save lives when we are called to do so. Ultimately, we strive to help people find and rebuild their own capacity and agency, leading to meaningful and productive independence. We are so grateful for this appreciation for the work we do together.”
Mackell has been the executive director of the Squamish Helping Hands Society since 2010.
In its news release announcement of Mackell's award, Rotary’s Brian Finley called her efforts "inspiring."
“There are many non-Rotarians who share Rotary priorities for service to the community,” he said in the release. “While not members, they work to support our community and make it a better place to live so that no-one is left behind. One way in which the club can recognize such individuals is by making them a Paul Harris Fellow.”
The award is named after one of Rotary’s founders. The honour has been bestowed on community-builders worldwide, such as U.S. President Jimmy Carter, UN Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar, polio vaccine developer Jonas Salk and Mother Teresa.
Find out more about the Rotary Club of Squamish on the organization's website.