Every time someone takes an action for peace, people are connected, to themselves and to each other. In every community there are people who make a difference and who are committed to bringing peace and prosperity to the world they live in, often in the face of great conflict and injustice.

The YMCA Peace Medallion during Peace Week is a way to recognize and celebrate members of your community who inspire us to join them in creating a more peaceful world.  The award recognizes the achievements of individuals or groups who have made a significant contribution to fostering a culture of peace in the community.

To nominate a deserving individual or group, please complete the nomination form.  Nomination deadline is October 6th, 2017.  Selected recipients will be awarded the Peace Medallion at the annual YMCA Peace Breakfast on Friday, November 24th, 2017.

YMCA Peace Medallion Nomination Form 2017

Meet our 2016 Peace Medallion Recipients

  • Medallion 1
    Denise Benoit and Janice LeBlanc - Warm Hearts

    Denise Benoit and Janice LeBlanc don’t consider themselves heroes, just decent human beings wanting to make a difference in the lives of others. Through the launch of their charity – Coeurs Chaud – Warm Hearts, they are doing just that. After seeing children routinely underdressed in school playgrounds, the two women, who are Educational Assistants at École Amirault in Dieppe, decided that this had to change. Through Coeurs Chaud they now provide warm clothes to children with the goal that every child will feel warm, proud and happy all winter long.
    The clothing that Denise and Janice provide are collected through item donations or they are purchased new with the help of financial donations.  To raise funds, they have set up an account at UNI Financial Cooperation (Caisse Populaire) where anyone can donate, and they have also launched a race/walk called Course Coeurs Chauds - Warm Hearts Run”. The event, which will be held annually in May, was highly successful in its first year, allowing the women to purchase many needed items.
    They also collect good quality and next-to-new winter items, including snowsuits, snow pants, coats, hats, mitts, scarves and winter boots.
    Although their charity is still new Janice and Denise have provided warm winter clothing to nearly 80 kids in Dieppe and Memramcook. As the need grows, their goal is to expand and help even more children throughout the greater Moncton area. They’ve also launched a Facebook page where community supporters can join to learn more about their work.
    While Denise and Janice are honoured to be recognized for their good works, they say their motivation comes from seeing the joy on children’s faces when they receive new clothing.  Denise is a single mother who has raised three children and she remembers all too well the challenges and the cost of properly outfitting her children for winter. For Janice, there is no greater satisfaction than helping a child. Whenever a needy child receives a warm piece of clothing, she says it feels like she has received an early Christmas present.
    For their desire to step up and create change, for their compassion towards children and for their warm and very kind hearts, Denise and Janice are deserving recipients of the YMCA Peace Medallion.

  • Medallion 2
    Normand and Carmelle Doiron

    “We are all one big family.”
    To the many Syrian refugees who have arrived in Moncton over in the last year, they are simply known as “mammie” and “pappie”, and Carmelle and Normand Doiron wouldn’t have it any other way.  For more than 14 years, this couple has been welcoming refugees and newcomers to Moncton with support, kindness and friendship. They first began by volunteering with MAGMA to help individuals and families from the Congo, Rwanda and Somalia. Today, they have been a welcoming presence for Syrian newcomers.
    “I imagine what it must feel like to get off a plane, to have nothing and to know no one,” says Carmelle. “We just wanted to help them to build their lives here and not let them feel alone in their new community.”
    To help with the influx of new refugees, Carmelle and Normand have spent much of the year busily working with other MAGMA volunteers to set up no less than 30 newcomer apartments  - cleaning, moving in furniture and providing supplies. Once the families arrived, they have continued to be a welcoming and comforting presence, taking them shopping and teaching them about Canadian culture.
    Volunteering is nothing new for this philanthropic couple. Carmelle has been a hospice volunteer in Shediac and Normand helps with shop programs at École Marc Gallagher. They are also long-time church volunteers and believe that simple acts of kindness go a long way in making a difference in people’s lives.
    One of the most rewarding experiences for the couple has been to meet the children of newcomers who they helped years ago. To see them thrive is what Carmelle calls “the greatest gift.”
    “To see children who came here with nothing, and who are now going to university with dreams and goals,” says Carmelle. “This gives me happiness. To know that we were able to make this happen.”
    Carmelle and Normand’s dedication to helping newcomers stems from living abroad.  Normand’s work took him to Africa, where he and Carmelle witnessed first-hand the effects of war and poverty. They also remember the kindness of other there when they felt like outsiders. After returning home, Carmelle vowed that she would do the same for newcomers to Moncton.
    “Living in Africa really opened my eyes to understanding what it feels like to be a newcomer,” she says. “But I believe we are all one family and we must treat people this way. So this is what Normand and I are committed to doing.”
     

  • Medallion 3
    Warren Redman

    Building Peaceful Communities, one person at a time.
    To achieve peaceful communities, it must start within each of us. This is the message that Warren Redman has been sharing for 32 years – a message that has helped him to change thousands of lives in the process.  Warren has been a youth counsellor, life coach and leadership trainer, and has spent most of his working life helping individuals and organizations to create peace in their lives and their environments.
    Warren came to this career quite accidentally after he began working with youth and non-profit organizations in his native England. There, he founded the Emotional Fitness Institute where he worked closely with individuals and organizations experiencing disharmony and conflict.
    Over the years, Warren has mentored and trained thousands of people through his Emotional Fitness approach to achieving inner peace. He has also authored 17 books on the subject.
    In 1993, Warren immigrated to Calgary where he continued mentoring and training. Eight years ago, after visiting the province, he and his wife decided to move to Shediac where he has become an active member in the community.
    While Warren no longer counsels and coaches, he continues to find ways to bringing the message of peace to his community. In volunteering with Arts Shediac, he is working on the development of two peace murals for the Town. Although the project is in its early stages, the goal is to create murals that are a genuine community effort. Small movable murals will be set up over the winter and spring that will allow community members to create what they see as their vision for a peaceful community.  From this, a mural design will be selected and an artist will transfer the designs onto two building walls in the town.
    For his decades-long journey to bring peace into the lives of others as well as for his efforts to build peaceful communities here and abroad, Warren Redman exemplifies all that YMCA Peace Medallion represents.