Volunteers recognized at new awards banquet

Apr 18, 2024
Deacon Gary Tester, Catholic Charities of Central Florida president, speaks to almost 80 volunteers attending the agency’s first Masters of Time Volunteers Awards banquet April 13, 2024.

APOPKA | Almost 80 Catholic Charities of Central Florida volunteers from different parts of the Diocese of Orlando were recognized April 13, 2024, for their dedication and hard work toward helping those in need. The volunteers served in various ministries such as Agape Mission Markets, Clinics, Family Stability, Comprehensive Refugee Services program, and Immigration and Legal Services and have collectively provided more than 100,000 hours of service. The inaugural event — called Masters of Time Volunteer Awards — was held at St. Francis of Assisi Parish Center in Apopka.

Volunteers were recognized in five categories: milestone, servant leadership, spirit of volunteerism, rockstar rookie, and group for volunteers from schools and larger organizations. Within the categories there is added recognition for hours donated, dedication, spirit, heart, perpetual smile, making a difference and more.

Catholic Charities of Central Florida hosts their first annual Masters of Time Volunteers Awards Banquet at St. Francis of Assisi Parish, Apopka. (LANA KACZMAREK)

Every ministry nominated a volunteer of the year from their location and then selected one to represent Catholic Charities of Central Florida nationally in Catholic Charities USA. Bethanne Smith from St. Thomas Aquinas Medical Clinic was chosen for this honor.

“These volunteers, regardless of what role they play, extend the love of our savior Jesus to men, women and children each and every day,” said Deacon Gary Tester, president of Catholic Charities of Central Florida. “They are, simply stated, vital to our ability to carry out the corporal works of mercy on behalf of the Diocese of Orlando.”

If you are interested in volunteering for Catholic Charities of Central Florida, visit https://cflcc.org/volunteer/.