A longtime Acton woman was recognized with an Ontario Senior Achievement Award last week for the volunteer contribution she makes to her community. Shirley Broostad was one of 22 recipients of the annual award that honours outstanding senior citizens. She was recognized, in particular, for her many years of advocacy on behalf of seniors. "Shirley Broostad is an exceptional person who brings creativity, enthusiasm and warmth to each task she tackles," said Jim Bradley, Minister Responsible for Seniors, at the award ceremony at Queen's Park Wednesday. "She inspires those around her to do their personal best." "I felt very honoured, but very humbled," Broostad said. "You know there are many others that should be (recognized as well)." Bradley said Broostad has "worked tirelessly" on many committees serving seniors, children and families including the Halton West Seniors Planning and Education Committee-- an advisory board based in Acton for seniors' issues and needs assessment, geriatric mental health and community care access. She's also worked on a committee focused on identifying and actively supporting isolated seniors and the Support Services Action Group-- an organization that creates brochures and information packages to advise seniors about local services and upcoming events. "My group (the member of the Halton West Seniors Planning and Education Committee) is really part of what I do, I spur them on, but we do it," said Broostad, 75. She is also a member of the Halton Hills Injury Prevention Committee (HHIP) and recently joined Seniors And Law Enforcement Together (SALT),
which has hosted information sessions on home security and fraud for seniors in Halton Hills. Broostad has also been on her church council (St. Alban's Anglican) for more than 20 years. "Shirley is a strong proponent of intergenerational programs bringing seniors and youth together," said Bradley. She's volunteered with the All Star and Cozy Reading program at local elementary schools and on a recent Remembrance Day arranged a visit by a Korean veteran to speak to school children. "With an eye out for anyone in need, and a helping hand at the ready, Shirley exemplifies the heart of her small town," said Bradley. "It's amazing," said Broostad, of her award win. "You can do a lot when you enjoy it." Broostad, a nurse/teacher at Conestoga College, who retired in 1990, is married to Lloyd and they has two grown children, seven grandchildren and one great grandchild on the way.