As part of National Volunteer Week, Chuck MacInnes of Amherst is being recognized by Ducks Unlimited for his outstanding contributions to the organization for the past 28 years.
Chuck MacInnes still recalls when he first started volunteering with Ducks Unlimited.
AMHERST – “It was back in the days when the ladies had a fundraising dinner in Amherst and so did the men, and I was approached by then-fundraising manager Al Glover to be on the committee,” said MacInnes. “I had been seeking it out for a couple years, and there was finally room so I was invited on.”
That was 28 years ago, and the Amherst resident has been involved with the organization in various capacities ever since, currently serving as chairman, and is also a member of the Nova Scotia Provincial Council.
He has also helped out with the Atlantic Experience, an effort that brings in supporters, mostly from the United States, to show them what has been done with the funds they have contributed to the Canadian organization.
As part of National Volunteer Week, Ducks Unlimited is recognizing MacInnes for his outstanding contributions.
He has put a lot of time and work as a volunteer, but said the experience has been rewarding.
“The camaraderie with everyone, from the staff at the local office, to the Fredericton office, people across the province and most importantly the local people, has been great,” he said. “Our dinner in Amherst (on May 9 this year) has been Top 10 in Canada for the last few years. That’s the support we have.”
It has also been rewarding to take young people and visitors to the area out on marsh tours, and for things such as retriever demonstrations, he said.
MacInnes is one of 6,200 volunteers across the country that help Ducks Unlimited make a difference every year.
“Chuck MacInnes is an amazing volunteer who has given so much of his time to Ducks Unlimited Canada,” says Jamie Young, senior manager of events and volunteer relations for DUC in Nova Scotia. “Chuck knows the DUC habitat projects in the Amherst area like the back of his hand, and always pitches in to help whenever it’s needed – his dedication and sense of humour make him a joy to work with. It’s because of the commitment of people like him that our organization has been able to complete over 380 habitat projects and conserve almost 46,000 acres of habitat in Nova Scotia.”
It was as a result of the support of volunteers like MacInnes that DUC recently celebrated its 75th anniversary. This marked three-quarters of a century of wetland conservation in Canada, and it was a milestone celebrated around the country with many special events.
He said he has seen a huge difference locally thanks to the efforts of Ducks Unlimited over the years, and credited the strong rapport with the local staff for its continued success. Being recognized for his efforts is appreciated, but something he does not accept alone.
“It feels good, after a lot of years of hard work and dedication, but this is shared with all the other volunteers I’ve worked with over the years,” said MacInnes. “We have a very good group of dedicated guys that are striving for the same mission, to help Ducks Unlimited, help the waterfowl and wildlife, and people.”