winner of Marilyn Neufeld Lifelong Learning award for people with disabilities

Marilyn Neufeld Lifelong Learning Award

Posted on June 21, 2017

Faye with flowerHutton House is pleased to announce the winner of the first annual Marilyn Neufeld Lifelong Learning Award is Faye Simmons.

The award will be handed out each year to a Hutton House participant who has demonstrated a passion or commitment to lifelong learning by actively pursuing their goals through personal improvement and/or professional development.

Faye is both a participant and a volunteer at Hutton House. She has been involved in our programs for more than seven years. She is a prolific artist in our ARTworks programs, often using her fingers as her paint brushes. As a volunteer, Faye works in our Adult Education program as a tutor, currently helping more than a dozen learners with their reading, math and/or communications. She has also volunteered in our LIFEworks and Access Voluntarism programs.

When the award criteria were first announced, several staff nominated Faye. They said things like, “…having a positive impact in the lives of others is what is most important to her…She takes on new challenges and puts a lot of thought into the best way to meet each learner’s needs. She tries new, innovative strategies seeking out a variety of resources, shares information on adaptive technology with staff, takes on additional duties and finds ways around her own challenges.”

Faye was surprised when she heard the news. She says, “I’m really, really grateful!” She is pleased that the award is recognition and appreciation of the hard work she does for her own development and for others.

As for what lifelong learning means to Faye, she says it’s simple. “You strive to be better than you were yesterday.”

Faye is learning to be more patient. She is learning more about different disabilities through the people she tutors. She is learning that participants learn more than words or math concepts when they visit the Hutton House Learning Centre. She says they learn social skills, and time management, things they can use in the real world. And she is so happy to be able to help them with that.

As for the $500 reward, “I have no idea how to spend the money,” Faye states. But she will enjoy figuring it out.

The Marilyn Neufeld Lifelong Learning Award was established in the name of our past Executive Director. Marilyn Neufeld led the organization for 32 years from 1984 to 2016. A new recipient will be named each spring.