Richmond County volunteer awarded Sovereign’s Medal

    ST. PETER’S: A Richmond County man has received a major honour in recognition of his service to his community.

    Richard Landry of St. Peter’s has been awarded the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers from the office of the Governor General. The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) nominated Landry for the award last spring to recognize his 22 years of service with the CRA’s Community Volunteer Income Tax Program.

    “I was amazed that they were nominating me and then to actually get the medal was a great honour,” Landry told The Reporter.

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    The Community Volunteer Income Tax Program helps community organizations host free tax preparation clinics across Canada for eligible individuals. The CRA provides software and training for volunteers who take part in the program.

    “We help those with low income or pensioners who have a straightforward tax return,” said Landry. “Right now, we’re helping 300 – 350 a year get their income tax in so that they can get the benefits of the return being filed.”

    Landry says he has helped people from throughout the St. Peter’s area, as well as Isle Madame, to file their income taxes.

    “The Lions Club has helped us by providing the hall and providing us with any equipment that we needed to purchase for the clinics to run, so that’s been a help,” said Landry.

    For a number of years, Landry worked on the program alongside his sister in law Debra Burke and fellow volunteer Donna Marchand. Marchand passed away last summer and Burke recently retired from the program, so Landry has been running the tax clinics on his own.

    “We are always looking for volunteers,” he said.

    He encourages anyone who might be interested in donating their time to visit the CRA’s website to learn more about the program.

    Landry has been an active community volunteer since his retirement from the paper mill in Point Tupper. He also serves as treasurer for the St. Peter’s and Area Lions Club.

    Lions Club president Kelvin Digout said Landry helps the community in a variety of ways. Landry is a caller for weekly bingo games, and helps host card plays for the Lions club. He also serves on the local parish council, as well as the St. Peter’s – Samsonville and Area Water Utility Board.

    “He’s always doing something for the community in some form. We could use more people like him,” said Digout.

    “It couldn’t have gone to a better guy. I brought it up at the Lions Club meeting and he got a unanimous round of applause. Everyone was just so happy for him.”