Sarah Hall (middle) is one of two Morinville women set to receive an award this weekend for their outstanding service to women. – Morinville News File Photo
By Morinville News Staff
Morinville – Two Morinville women to be honoured Saturday night as unsung heroines. Sarah Hall and Lynne Rosychuk are two of five women to be honoured as part of an International Women’s Day event sponsored by the St. Albert Bahá’í community. The annual event recognizes the contributions women make to society through their generosity of spirit, courage, creativity, determination, steadfastness, leadership, enthusiasm, love, caring, and other attributes that enrich the communities in which they live.
Hall was singled out for her support of local mothers and community life through a social media group she set up to unite local mothers. Rosychuk is being singled out for her efforts to make the Jessica Martel Memorial Foundation’s mission to open the door on domestic violence and abuse by providing safety, support, awareness and education a reality.
Sarah Hall is the founder of the Facebook group Morinville’s Marvelous[sic] Moms, a group that unites mothers in Morinville for fellowship, communication, business networking and charitable volunteering.
When Hall moved to Morinville three years ago she knew no one, was responsible for four children, and had a husband working out of town for long stretches. Rather than be lonely, Hall thought about other local mothers who must be in the same situation, and decided to reach out to them through social media.
Within a few days of strating the Morinville’s Marvelous Moms page there were six members. That number grew quickly to 20 and today has 500 local mothers connected with one another via Facebook. The group has resulted in a number of face-to-face friendships as well as a greater awareness of and sense of community in Morinville for these women. Additionally, the Moms have participated in charitable giving, most recently adopting families over Christmas to ensure they had what they needed.
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Lynne Rosychuk is being recognized as an Unsung Heroine and Champion of the Vulnerable. The mother of Jessica Martel, who was killed by her common law husband in 2009, Rosychuk has taken the tragedy of her daughter’s death into a mission to make sure a similar fate does not happen to other women.
Rosychuk has rallied to make reality of a dream she and her daughter had a dream to create a safe place for women and children.
The Jessica Martel Memorial Foundation’s mission is “to open the door on domestic violence and abuse by providing safety, support, awareness and education.”
The Foundation’s first goal is to find a home in the Sturgeon County area where women who have endured abuse will be able to live safely while healing and planning the next steps in their lives.
In addition to raising her daughter’s children, Rosychuk works with the Foundation’s board, attends speaking engagements where she raises awareness on domestic violence, and supports the Foundation’s fundraising events.
Rosychuk is being recognized for her strength, drive, passion and courage in taking her family’s tragedy to prevent others from experiencing the same.
For Rebecca Holland, the woman who nominated the two Morinville award recipients, the choice was easy.
“How can you not want praise for a woman who shares the single hardest day of her life, in order to help those most vulnerable?” Holland said of Rosychuk. “Lynne is real, she is present in our community, she ( along with our board) are helping woman right here, in our county. Lynne’s heartache is a parent’s worst nightmare, she perseveres, and has made a lasting legacy for Jessica’s three children. I was beside myself writing her nomination.
As for Hall, Holland said she’s done an amazing service to the women in the community. “She is a very dear friend and together, we’ve built an amazing network,” Holland said. “She asks for nothing in return, she is selfless in her endeavor. I love her, her family, her like-minded business sense. she is a woman of high ideals and honesty.”
Holland said she was elated to hear she won. “She deserves applause for bringing so many Moms together,” Holland said. “What started out as a small group, under 20, turned into a powerhouse of 537 moms.
The two area woman will be honoured in a special ceremony Mar. 9 along with St. Albert residents Jenny Bocock, Velvet Martin, and Katie Fitzgerald.