Durham County Volunteer Family Wins a 2020 Governor’s Volunteer Service Award

— Written By Christa Gibson
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Each year, the Triangle Nonprofit & Volunteer Leadership Center (TNVLC) honors area volunteers through their Key Volunteer of the Year and the Governor’s Volunteer Service recognition programs. The awards honor the “truly amazing contributions of wonderful volunteers” who give their time and energy to area organizations and their causes. This September, a family whose members are familiar to everyone at N.C. Cooperative Extension in Durham County was recognized: the Evans Family- Grandfather Lilton, Grandmother Valerie, and Granddaughter Mia- received the 2020 Governor’s Volunteer Service program’s Family Award for Durham County. The award recognizes a family that “makes a significant contribution to their community through volunteer service.”

Evans Family Portrait with Award

The Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) program at N.C. Cooperative Extension of Durham County nominated the Evans for their commitment to sharing their talents in growing and cooking healthy food for our community.

Lilton Evans uses his gardening skills to make sure that others in our community don’t go hungry. Each year, he grows hundreds of pounds of vegetables for local food banks. For the past five years, he has helped with the maintenance of the Durham Tech students’ garden plots, which provide food to students in need. He drives to Louisburg, North Carolina to gather sweet potatoes to distribute to the community each year. In 2019 alone, he donated over 270 volunteer hours.

Valerie Evans generously shares her cooking skills to teach others. She serves as a culinary assistant in the N.C. Cooperative Extension of Durham County Food Lab, helping to teach families to eat well. Valerie assists with prepping and cleaning for classes, including the family nutrition program Mindful Meals, Mindful Moms. Last year, Valerie assisted each day of the 4-H Farm to Fork Camp for youth 13 and up. Valerie logged 232 volunteer hours in 2019.

Mia Durant is also a skilled young chef. After attending as a camper, she was promoted to a 4-H camp counselor last summer, helping to teach proper knife skills and monitoring the safety of younger children during cooking classes. She shared more than 150 hours of her time with our community in 2019.

We at N.C. Cooperative Extension in Durham County are grateful for the selfless way that the Evans family shares their time and talent with our community and are proud to see them honored through this award.