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Elk Grove Citizen

5 Over 50 Volunteer Award Winners Announced

Jun 04, 2024 11:38AM ● By Sacramento County News Release

SACRAMENTO COUNTY, CA (MPG) - In honor of Older Americans Month, Sacramento County’s Adult and Aging Commission proudly presents the 5 Over 50 Volunteer Award to five outstanding individuals. The Commission selects these winners based on nominations from County residents. Each winner is over the age of 50, volunteers each week, and showcases the impact getting involved can have on your community.

District 1 Winner: Ana Marcelo

Ana started volunteering at the South Natomas Library over 15 years ago. She repairs books, some dating back to the 1850s. She has restored more than 60 volumes of archived directories. Ana also assists local school librarians by repairing books.

“This is so extremely very funny that I am receiving an award for something that I love to do,” Ana said.

District 2 Winner: Margarita Chavez

Margarita began cleaning up litter more than 20 years ago. She now volunteers with the River City Waterway Alliance. She has participated in more than 300 trash cleanups.

“Why do we do it? Because we love our waterways, we love our wildlife,” said Margarita.

Margarita’s twin sister also volunteers with the group. Margarita says cleaning up with the group keeps her mentally and physically healthy since she gets to socialize and must use a lot of upper body strength while picking up trash.

District 3 Winner: Adele Kruger

At nearly 90 years old, Adele serves as a volunteer coordinator at the American River Parkway Foundation. She has a mile along the parkway that she is responsible for keeping clean. For the past 12 years, she has walked the mile twice or more each week, picking up trash and greeting people as they enjoy the trails and river. During warmer months, Adele kayaks along the river to pick up trash. Adele says she loves nature and enjoys going out each week and doing her part in helping upkeep the natural beauty of the area.

“You’ve got to get rid of the trash, otherwise, it’s not enjoyable for people,” said Adele.

District 4 Winner: Wayne Watts

Wayne Watts has spent over 40 years volunteering. He cleans up trash while maintaining a full-time job. As a dedicated member of the River City Waterway Alliance, Wayne often picks up litter on the weekends with the group. He also picks up litter almost every day on his lunch break.

“I found the parkway and I liked it so much that I just figured if you love something, you take care of it,” said Wayne.

While Wayne enjoys cleaning up on his own, he says he is happy to have found a group of people who are as passionate as he is about the parkway.

District 5 Winner: Faye Gaines

Faye fights hunger in her community. She is the CEO and Director of Sunshine Food Pantry and Resource Center, Inc. in Galt. Faye and her team of volunteers feed thousands of people each month. She says none of what she does would be possible without the support of the community and her fellow volunteers.

“I love what I do. I love helping the people, the volunteers that we work with – I’m very fond of all of them and we work well together,” Faye said.

About the Award:

The 5 Over 50 Award celebrates individuals aged 50 and older who dedicate their time, energy, and passion to improving Sacramento County. On May 21, 2024, Sacramento County’s Board of Supervisors recognized and thanked this year’s winners. Sacramento County’s Adult and Aging Commission is proud to honor this year’s winners and thank them for helping make our community a better place. ​