Collingwood Neighbourhood House (CNH) proudly recognizes its long-serving staff members. At this year’s Annual General Meeting (AGM), CNH staff and contractors who have reached the milestones of 5, 10, 15, 20, 25 and, for the first time in CNH’s history, 30 years of service and dedication to the neighbourhood house, were thanked by the Board of Directors.
Paul’s 20 years of paid work with CNH is actually a small part of his long-time, broad involvement and activism in the neighbourhood, where he has served as an enthusiastic volunteer both with CNH and other local groups.
Paul started volunteering with CNH in the mid-‘90s on CNH’s Board of Directors, serving as Board Treasurer. He stepped down from the Board to join the Arts Pow Wow, encouraging support for the arts in Renfrew-Collingwood. Paul’s love of the arts also showed up in some of his other volunteer work as he founded the Collingwood Music Club, designed and helped produce the Spirit of Collingwood Mural and also helped to produce the Faces of Our Neighbourhood Festival, the pre-cursor to Collingwood Days. He was a founding member of Collingwood Days and for many years has been Co-Entertainment Coordinator and Stage Manager for Collingwood.
Paul also worked as a mentor with Prevention Education and also with CRYME (Collingwood Renfrew Youth Mappers and Educators).
Paul’s involvement with CNH’s Communications Committee led to him helping to turn the CNH Newsletter into the Renfrew-Collingwood Community News. Paul writes some articles (particularly restaurant reviews) for the newspaper and does the paper’s monthly design and layout. He is proud of the fact that the newspaper was instrumental in saving two local historic landmarks, Firehall 15 and Carleton Schoolhouse. Paul also worked for a time at CNH teaching English classes, where he not only helped newcomers to learn English but also met the woman who became his wife, the most personally meaningful outcome of his many years of volunteer and paid work at CNH.