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Catch the spirit!

Council honoured this year's winners of the Order of the Spirit Catcher and Youth Spirit Catcher awards.
spirit catcher award (1)
Jason Gingrich received the Youth Spirt Catcher Award for his accomplishments with Scouts Canada in Barrie.

Winning the Youth Spirit Catcher Award has inspired Jason to work even harder to serve others.

"This is a huge honour and it has really energized me to continue to serve," the Barrie teen said at a special presentation Monday night.

The Order of the Spirit Catcher Award and the Youth Spirit Catcher Award are presented to individuals who have volunteered selflessly, made a significant contribution to the lifestyle of the community and, through exceptional achievement, benefited others and brought honour to the City of Barrie.

Jason won the youth award along with Jamie Massie who won the Order of the Spirit Catcher Award for 2015.

"To receive an award like this is very humbling experience that blew me away," Jason said at a council meeting Monday night. "I have always had a deep appreciation for service and awards."

At just 14 years old, Jason has a long list of accomplishments, including many leadership roles with Scouts Canada.

He has fundraised more $15,000 for Scouting through door-to-door popcorn sales, annual Apple Day sales and Scout Trees and serves as Area Youth Commissioner for the Simcoe Phoenix Area. 

The Order of the Spirit Catcher Award was first given in the year 2000. It started a long list of community members whose beacons of selfless volunteer commitment to the City of Barrie have set standards for all of the citizens of this city to not just take note of, but to emulate in their own daily lives.

They are the most prominent award given to an adult and student member of our Community who has:

  • volunteered selflessly
  • made a significant contribution to the lifestyle of the community
  • benefitted others and brought honour to the City of Barrie, through exceptional achievement

Mayor Jeff Lehman congratulated both recipients.

"Jason, at a time when many young people are sort of looking inward, you are looking outward and helping other kids and sharing the breadth of your talent," he said. "Thank you for being a role model."

Jamie Massie has actively been involved in fundraising for numerous charities including the Royal Victoria Hospital, Barrie Public Library, McLaren Art Centre, the Lake Simcoe Conservation Foundation, the Barrie Molson Centre and numerous youth sports programs.

His impressive list of awards and acknowledgements include Barrie Businessman of the Year, Canada‚Äôs Top 40 Under 40 as awarded by Canadian Business Magazine, the Ontario Provincial Police Citation Award, The Operation Hero Scholarship is open to a dependant or spouse of serving members of the Canadian Forces entering any full-time post-secondary program at Georgian College and has demonstrated involvement within his or her community.

As Honorary Colonel of Canadian Forces Base Borden, Massie created Operation Hero, a scholarship program for Canadian military family members to attend Georgian College. The fund has reached its goal of $1,000,000.

"My love for this city is reflected in every aspect of my life," Massie said following the presentation. "My passion for community and this beautiful city has been a driving force for me."

Robin MacLennan

About the Author: Robin MacLennan

Robin MacLennan has been a reporter, photographer and editor for the daily media in Barrie, across Simcoe County and Toronto for many years. She is a proud member of the Barrie community.
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