To any not-for-profit organization, volunteers are a vital component of their service to the community. Volunteers at Uplands Village in Pleasant Hill are no exception. Volunteering and service to others are among the highest values held by this continuing care community.

For the fourth year in a row, the Council for Health and Human Services Ministry (CHHSM) of the United Church of Christ has named Uplands' nominees as recipients of National Volunteer and Service Awards.

Dorothy Faunce, resident of Uplands since 1997, and the Pleasant Hill Community Church-UCC, adjacent to the Uplands campus, received their awards at the CHHSM Annual Meeting in Albuquerque in March.

The Rev. Ted McKnight, immediate past moderator, and Jean Clark, current moderator, accepted the Congregational Stewardship Award for the church.

Faunce received the Towel and Basin Award as the unofficial "Minister of Entertainment and Goodwill" at Uplands. Her tireless volunteering and dry wit spread laughter and fellowship throughout the community. Even her acceptance speech at the awards ceremony brought down the house. In addition, Faunce serves as president of the Wharton Association, organizes Saturday night movies at Fletcher House, calls bingo games and is often responsible for community-wide holiday events and picnics.

The Pleasant Hill Community Church-UCC and Uplands share a common history with mutual support and respect. The church's ministry and service to the residents of Uplands is considered a priceless gift. Worship services at the church are taped for live viewing at Uplands' assisted living facility, and the minister of the church holds weekly services at the nursing home.

In addition to accepting the awards in Albuquerque, both award winners will be honored at the Uplands annual board meeting in May.

Previous CHHSM award winners from Uplands are John C. Buck (former executive director of Uplands), Servant Leader Award 2005; Ruth White, Uplands bookkeeper, 2005, and Sherry McCloud, 2003, St. Stephens Award; Richard C. Braun, M.D., Wharton Nursing Home medical director, 2004 and Joseph Gyorke, Uplands resident, 2003, Towel and Basin Award.

Board member Hal Schoup, volunteering his time and talents, writes the award winning entries.

For more information regarding Uplands Village, call the administrative offices at 277-3518. Uplands Village is a not-for-profit retirement community offering independent living homes, assisted living and nursing care for over 50 years.

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