Lift up those who step up ...
in a crisis,
year after year.
Volunteers are the hidden muscle in community life. Because of them, communities can recover from crisis, support vulnerable residents over time, and respond to emerging challenges.
These six awards offer opportunities to say thank you and, at the same time, show the powerful difference volunteers of every age make in life.
General nomination information
Nomination deadline: March 7, 2024
- Individual and Team Awards
These four awards recognize individuals and teams whose significant volunteer contributions serve as inspiration to others. Be sure to review eligibility guidelines further down on this page.
Maine Volunteer of the Year
Recognizes an individual who has committed significant time and effort to improving the life of individuals or the community through volunteer service. Over the years, this person consistently stepped up and pitched in whenever help was needed.
Young Maine Volunteer of the Year
Recognizes a person 20 years old or younger who, through volunteer service, has demonstrated a strong commitment to improving the life of individuals or the community and, by example, shows the meaning of "active citizenship."
Outstanding National Service Volunteer
Recognizes an individual participant in Maine AmeriCorps or AmeriCorps Seniors who has completed at least one year of service and demonstrated outstanding commitment to service by exceeding the requirements of their normal service assignment.
Outstanding Volunteer Team
This award recognizes a team of volunteers (family, employees, friends, club or association members) who committed significant time and effort to improving the life of individuals or the community through volunteer service. Fundraising is not considered a volunteer activity for the purpose of this award.
- Awards for Organizations
There three awards recognize the role community institutions -- public, for profit, and nonprofit -- play in a thriving volunteer sector.
Outstanding Employee Volunteer Program
Recognizes an employer that maintains a formal workplace volunteer program and a corporate culture that inspires and equips employees to volunteer and make an impact in their communities. Charitable donations and fundraising are not considered a volunteer activity for the purpose of this award.
Outstanding Non-Profit Volunteer Program
Recognizes a volunteer program operated by a non-profit organization (501(c)3), school, municipality, or other unit of government, which has made significant changes and improvements in challenges or problems faced by the community.
- Guidelines and Eligibility
Please read these carefully because they are the basis for accepting or rejecting nominations.
- Nominees for all organization and individual categories must have active volunteer service during the most recent three years.
- Nominees for Youth Volunteer of the Year must be age 20 or younger.
- Individuals or teams that volunteer as part of a workplace volunteer program, internship or for course credit are eligible.
- Individuals nominated under the National Service category (Foster Grandparents, AmeriCorps, AmeriCorps*VISTA, Senior Companions, etc.) must have performed service "above and beyond" their normal duties and have completed at least one year of service.
- Any recipient of an individual or organization award during the past three years is not eligible for consideration.
- You can nominate more than one individual and/or organization; however each nomination must be submitted on a separate form.
- Information contained in your nomination form will be used for event publications and released to the media and elected officials. Please be sure the nominee is aware of this.
- Nominees may be self-nominated.
- Nominators are expected to notify the person or organization they wish to nominate before submitting a name for consideration.
- Incomplete nominations (questions not answered, data fields skipped, text of recommendation letter missing, etc.) will not be considered.
- An individual, group or business may only be nominated for one category with the exception of Maine's Roll of Honor. For example, an individual nominated for Volunteer of the Year may also be nominated for Roll of Honor if they contributed 500 hours of service to a specific organization or program in the prior twelve months.
- If a nominee is selected, the Commission will need to communicate with the award recipient and nominator by email. Please be sure to include accurate emails in the nominations submitted.
- Board members, staff and the family members of Volunteer Maine or sponsors of the event are not eligible to receive any individual awards or take part in the nomination process.
- Outstanding Non-Profit Volunteer Program nominees must provide their EIN which will be used to confirm their nonprofit status.
Note: If nominations submitted in a particular category do not meet award criteria, no presentation is made that year.
- Nomination Instructions
All nominations for individuals, teams, and organizations must be complete and received through the appropriate online form.
Submission deadline is 11:59 pm on March 7, 2024.
Nominations must be submitted online. Two letters are required for each nomination. Support letters can either be uploaded into the online form or submitted by entering the letter's text in the appropriate field. Contact information for each author must appear in the form where requested. Nominators should retain the original letter until the selection process is completed.
To help with nomination preparation, a sample of each form is provided below as a download. It is not a fillable form.
Nominators can use these samples to gather information and write responses to the questions. You are strongly encouraged to prepare everything in a document so you can cut/paste text into the online form. It is not possible to save your work and return at a later time. Likewise, if you compose directly into the online form, your internet connection may time out without you realizing and your great work could be lost.
Specific Instructions: Nominations for Organizations
- Use THIS LINK to download and prepare the organization nomination form. Remember it is not a fillable form. (PDF) Note: this sample has pages for every category but the form you will complete is shorter.
- To submit the nomination, use this ONLINE FORM link. Note that the 2 required testimonial letters can be uploaded in the form OR the text can be copied and pasted into the form. (Most nominators prefer to upload.)
Specific Instructions: Nominations for Individuals or Teams
- Download and prepare the nomination using THIS LINK to the sample nomination form (PDF). It is not a fillable form. Note: this sample has pages for every category but the form you will complete is shorter.
- Submit the nomination using THIS LINK to the online form. Note that the 2 required testimonial letters can be uploaded in the form OR the text can be copied and pasted into the form. (Most nominators prefer to upload.)