Tag Archives: Community Service

Lonal Robinson Volunteer of The Year Awards Ceremony

DSCN0037Inspiration filled the Third Ward Multi-Services Center as it hosted a community meeting and the fourth annual Lonal Robinson Volunteer of The Year Awards Ceremony.

Sponsored by the Friends of Emancipation Park, Inc. (FEP), the evening ceremony was honoring the volunteers of the organization for their service to the Third Ward community and for their own personal service. Many of the attendees congratulated the recipients for their participation and the ceremony committee  FEP Board Member Cleo Steward who has chaired the event for five years. FEP Board Member and co-chair Myra Griffin called the ceremony a pleasure.

“It’s just a pleasure to be able to host this for him [Lonal Robinson],” Griffin said.

Robinson, who co-founded FEP with his wife Dorris, passed away on March 17, 2012 after a brain hemorrhage. He was 63. He was very active in the Houston community and his service through teaching, working, and publishing would eventually have his name honored and placed on the awards, which also includes the historic Emancipation Park.

Emancipation Park was constructed in 1872 by freed African American to celebrate the end of slavery. Considered as the oldest and first public park in Texas, it is now an area where families of any kind gather to enjoy outdoor activities and quality family time.

Renovations are currently being made to the park, and FEP Youth President Marcaus Nickle sees more than that.

“It will make the community a better place. It will bring everybody together. I feel like were helping each other more than just giving a hand,” Nickle said.DSCN0038

FEP’s mission is to preserve and protect the legacy of Emancipation Park through Exemplary Programs, making it a destination for all. Their mission has been growing by other individuals who volunteered. This influenced a presentation of the awards to those whose impact in the community received recognition.

Helen Graham, who was not present at the ceremony, received the FEP Outstanding Board Member of The Year Award. As an FEP Board member, she has a heart for people and loves to help others.

Golden Age Hobby House- Houston took home the Lonal Robinson Volunteer Organization of The Year. What this organization functions is that it provides seniors and youth with social interaction and a feeling of inclusion like no other, and they can be counted on to volunteer as needed for the youth programs at EP.

Taking the final two awards for Lonal Robinson Volunteer of The Year are married couple Cheryl and Robin West. Cheryl, an Evangelist, and Robin, a Minister, found Westside of Heaven Outreach Music Ministry in 2000, which she and her husband work to help individuals be achievers, more than conquerors, and rebuild their lives for the betterment of themselves, their families, and their community.

After the ceremony, Carrington Stewart, who is now in retirement, believes that the ceremony will keep the FEP tradition going.

“I think what it’ll do is it will recognize people who are in the community and will tie the connections to the park,” Stewart said.

Cleo Stewart, FEP Board Member, and Committee Co-Chair, certainly hopes so as well.

“We try not to miss a year. Any time we stop doing it, then we lose our motivation,” Cleo said.

FEP vice president Reverend Glen Cheeks highlighted the event’s reasons, as it concluded, with these words: “We are not doing this for the money. We are doing this for the heart.” Each FEP Board member was presented a red rose by President Dorris Ellis for their service.