Earlier in the week, I received The President's Volunteer Service Award in recognition of my volunteerism in 2015. For those of you who have no idea what I'm taking about, here is a description of the accolade from the site itself:
The President’s Volunteer Service Award (PVSA) is the premier volunteer awards program, encouraging citizens to live a life of service through presidential gratitude and national recognition.
The President the quote is referring to is none other than the POTUS himself (and title character from the hit show "House of Cards"). When I first heard I was receiving this award, I thought I was receiving this award from the President of my company. Imagine my surprise when I realized that this was coming from the White House!
The presentation was fittingly held during National Volunteer Week. The company Director who lead the procession applauded all 25 recipients for our efforts and urged us to continue to instill the virtue of humanitarianism and philanthropy in our community. My name was called and I was handed a certificate, a letter with a White House letterhead (fancy!) and this glorious pin:
Does this mean I'm an award winning volunteer? You bet it does (I think)! The news of the award made its way on my Facebook and it was received amazingly well. I was touched by all the likes and kudos I had received from my friends and family along with congratulatory notes from my coworkers. Wow! This was huge and it certainly was quite an honor.
After I was done basking in the glory, I sat and thought about the award itself. What does it mean to me? It meant a lot as a matter of fact. Volunteerism is a big part of my life. I don't help the disadvantaged or clean up trash because I sought out recognition of any kind. Instead, I believe very strongly in leaving my surroundings in better shape than what I had I found it in. Sure, turn on the cheesy phrase alert but I really, really believe that. My actions only affect my community on a very micro level, but if I can inspire others to do the same then numerous micro actions become amplified to hopefully bring about positive change on a macro level.
In closing, the award was recognition of a job well done which brought a smile to my face. There's more to be done and I don't plan to stop anytime soon.
PS - For anyone who is curious about what Barack Obama's signature looks like, here you go!