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Children’s Garden guest reader Mary Bartoshuk wins ENPY Award for Volunteer of the Year

The Community Foundation has named Mary Bartoshuk as Volunteer of the Year through its Excellence in Nonprofit Performance Yearly (ENPY) awards program.

Nominated by Children’s Garden of LaBelle, Bartoshuk is a 74-year-old guest reader who is changing the way kids engage with reading. She brings magic to every story by dressing up in fun, elaborate costumes including an Easter bunny, clown and tooth fairy. As an active, longtime volunteer with United Way in Hendry County, Bartoshuk has become an integral part of the program that helps develop early literacy skills in young students at Children’s Garden, a United Way partner agency.

“As an inspiration to our students and staff, we are so excited to see Ms. Mary recognized for her dedication to the kids,” said Yadira Lorenzo, center director of the Children’s Garden of LaBelle. “I think everyone in the community would agree that Ms. Mary is already an outstanding volunteer, but her consistent acts of service have earned her the ENPY Award for Volunteer of the Year.”

The Community Foundation’s ENPY Awards recognizes the accomplishments of nonprofit organizations, as well as their leaders, advocates and supporters. This year, the awards program received a record number of nominations.

“Mary is the kind of person who can change the lives of students in our school,” said Chris Hansen, CEO of Child Care of Southwest Florida. “Her commitment to the cause and her creativity have made her an invaluable member of our child care center and community.”

Located at 88 S. Main St. in LaBelle, Children’s Garden provides a full-day early learning program for children between the ages of one and five. The center is part of Child Care of Southwest Florida, a nonprofit early childhood education provider with five learning centers that serve children in Lee and Hendry counties.