Alberta Soroptimists honour five women

Soroptimist International of Central Alberta honoured five women during the International Women’s Day Luncheon recently.

Soroptimist International of Central Alberta honoured five women during the International Women’s Day Luncheon recently.

Two Central Alberta single mothers were bestowed the Women’s Opportunity Award on March 7. The award is for women who are the sole providers of their children and returning to school for better opportunities.

It was the first year the group was able to give out two opportunity awards thanks to an additional $1,500 donation.

Brandy Newman, a mother of two and fourth-year sociology student at Red Deer College, received the standard $2,000 award and Pat Hanson, a mother of three and second-year nursing student at the college, received $1,500.

The first winner of the Violet Richardson Award was Miranda LaBrash of Saskatoon, one of the at-large applications Soroptimist took in as one of the Saskatchewan clubs could not afford to hand out awards this year.

LaBrash, 17, volunteers with teens with developmental disabilities and at a community wellness clinic serving disadvantaged neighbourhoods. She is also an after-school tutor for refugee children.

The second Violet Richardson Award recipient was Lucienne Henry, 16, of Clive, a well-known community volunteer with the 4H club and the Clive Breakfast Program.

Chiropractor Joelle Johnson of Red Deer took home the Ruby Award: Women Helping Women. She previously won the Entrepreneurship Award at the Women of Excellence Awards Central Alberta banquet in 2012 for her commitment to serving young families in Central Alberta at Family First Chiropractic and Wellness.

Johnson is a member of the Independent Achievers in Red Deer, co-hosted the Indigo Festival Red Deer from 2009 to 2011 and has volunteered her chiropractic services at rodeos and other events.

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