A goal of the Minnesota Women of Today is to recognize women, young people, and people with other challenges within our communities for their community service efforts and impact on the lives of others. For that reason, the Lois M Christiansen Women Who Impact Award (WWl), Outstanding Young Adult Award (OYA) and Outstanding Person with Developmental Challenges Award (OPDC) programs were implemented. These awards are given annually by the Minnesota Women of Today at the Winter State Convention Saturday Awards Banquet. The purpose of these awards are to recognize those who show excellence in leadership abilities, are involved in their local communities, and possess the ability to initiate ideas and innovations for new and existing projects and programs.
Individual chapters or districts submit nominees for judging on the state level. The honorees are recognized with a reception prior to the banquet, and a visual presentation at the banquet. In the Outstanding Awards manual you will find all the information you need to help select a nominee, and submit them for this award. The beginning point is to get approval from your chapter or district, set a budget, and form a committee to work together to prepare the entry. The current Future Directions Committee Awards Subcommittee Chair and SPMs will be glad to help you with questions you may have.
The money for scholarships and honorariums come from funds through the Minnesota Women of Today Foundation. Because the award funds have been set up through the MNWT Foundation, donations made by corporations, large or small businesses, or individuals, are tax deductible. Donations from outside sources are encouraged. All chapters also have the opportunity to be a part of the Outstanding Awards program by making donations to their corresponding funds. Donations to these award funds should be made out to the "MNWT Foundation" and earmarked for the appropriate fund. Mail donations to the MNWT Finance Vice President.
Awards for merit in the areas below are a gesture of appreciation to honor individuals for their outstanding achievements in the state's communities. MNWT is proud to sponsor the following annual awards. Recipients do not have to be Women of Today members to receive their award.
The Outstanding Young Adult Award has been presented by the Minnesota Women of Today since 1974. It is a scholarship project designed to recognize young adults who show excellence in leadership abilities and involvement in community activities. The Outstanding Young Adult Award (OYA) is awarded to young adults for their excellence in leadership abilities and volunteer contributions to their community. The honoree will receive a monetary scholarship towards their higher educational endeavors.
Named the Lois M Christenson Women Who Impact Award in 2009, a version of this outstanding woman award has been given out since the 1990s. It is designed to honor women who have made a valuable contribution to and impact upon their communities. The MNWT Foundation will give honorariums on the honoree's behalf to designated organizations.
Since 1994 MNWT has annually presented the Outstanding Person with Developmental Challenges (PDC) award. It is designed to honor an individual who has overcome her/his disability, shown personal growth and made an impact on their community or family. The honoree will receive a tuitional scholarship towards a stay at Camp Friendship in collaboration with True Friends and the MNWT Foundation. In 2019, it was decided that this award needs to be revamped and was not awarded in 2020; it is yet to be determined if or when this award will be reinstated.
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