Prince George the Volunteer City?

National Volunteer Week will have wrapped up, but a city committee is hoping for support for a lasting volunteer legacy.

During Monday night's meeting, city council will be asked to support branding Prince George as The Volunteer City, "It's in our nature."

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The idea comes from the advisory committee on enhancing Prince George (Enhance PG), which put together a pan-agency research group

"Branding Prince George 'The Volunteer City' prior to 2015 will help build the identity of our city and showcase Prince George in a positive light provincially, nationally and internationally," said the report from committee chair Linda Self.

The last B.C. State of Volunteering report released by Volunteer B.C. in 2009 called the city the Volunteer Capital of B.C. with a rate of 62 per cent for those aged 15 and older, compared to a provincial average of 45 per cent.

Enhance P.G. first broached the topic of rebranding the city during a committee of the whole meeting March 3 and were encouraged by the councillors present to bring it to a formal council meeting.

The idea comes with documented support from a variety of local organizations, such as the Elder Citizens Recreation Association, the Canadian Cancer Society, P.G. Hospice Society, REAPS and Tourism Prince George.

"When we heard that there were plans to brand our great community as the 'Volunteer City' we were excited, and honestly wondered why it took this long," said a letter of support from Big Brothers Big Sisters executive director Tim Bennett.

Canada Winter Games recruiting

For those looking to add to the city's volunteer base, a 2015 Canada Winter Games volunteer recruitment and registration drive will be held at Pine Centre Mall on Friday evening and all day Saturday.

It runs from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday and from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday.

In order to host the largest multi-sport and cultural event that Prince George and the region have ever held, 4,500 volunteer hosts are required, organizers say.

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