The Companion of CRC – Honours those who go beyond

Gold Oak Leaf for Companion of CRC v2 sm-CLEARJanuary 12, 2015. CRC is awarding five very special people with The Companion of CRC. Inaugurated in 2014, The Companion of CRC acknowledges those people whose extraordinary gifts of time, money or expertise have made a significant difference to the work of CRC at 40 Oaks. Only five Companions can be awarded in any calendar year and the number of living Companions is limited to forty at any given time.


The 2014 Companions of CRC are:

Valda Alleyne – known affectionately at CRC as “Grandma”, Valda has been volunteering at CRC for over 15 years, having mentored many youth in Regent Park. Valda is at 40 Oaks almost daily efficiently and quietly helping people help themselves and be the very best they can be.

Greig Clark – as past Chair of the Board of Directors CRC and current Chair of the Community Enterprises Program, Greig is the ultimate ambassador for CRC, its new building, its programs and the United Church. Greig audaciously has taken CRC to new heights throughout all parts of the Toronto community.

John Deacon – since he first volunteered to paint CRC rooming houses on Bleeker Street in 1966, John has humanized the lives of those living in poverty and on the streets while ensuring that the wealthier recognize their need to care for those living on the margins.

Paul Dowling – with a background in social housing, Paul understood the overwhelming need for more deeply affordable housing for Toronto’s hardest to house.  He brought politicians, bureaucrats, social activists, and CRC Board members together to envision 40 Oaks in the heart of Regent Park’s Phase One revitalization.

Carmel Hili – served on the staff of CRC for over 30 years teaching many others the true meaning of walking alongside people to help them help themselves. Quiet, always deferring and ever persevering this social activist makes space for others to flourish to ensure peace, justice, and love will prevail.

“Quite simply, 40 Oaks, the building, and CRC as we know it today would not exist if it was not for the outstanding dedication of these Companions of CRC”, stated The Most Reverend Lois Wilson, Chair of the Companion of CRC Nominating Committee. “Each had a special vision and determination to make the world a better place through CRC and they made it all happen.”

CRC is delighted to launch The Companion of CRC with these five nominees. The 2014 nominees will be invested on April 16, 2015, during National Volunteer Week. The deadline for 2015 nominations is April 30. To read more click here.

For more information or for personal interviews, please visit or call Bruce Voogd at 416-363-4234 ext. 238.

For a .pdf version of this media release, please click here.


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