Nov 19, 2010
JUDGES PRIZE WINNER ANNOUNCED
We've announced the TOP 10 and we're approaching 25 000 votes cast - what a week!
And what a weekend it is going to be for the winner of the Judges' Choice Award.
Nicole Messier congratulations!
In January, 2011 Nicole will receive a special eleventh award of $10,000 to be donated to her registered charity Animescale.
A quick recap on how this happened. Simply put, the judges were blown way by the quality of the Top 50. Over the course of the weekend the topic came up about how great it would be to give prizes to all the finalists. Some judges started dropping hints. Others outright lobbied judge Nicole Boivin of Manulife Financial, the Champions of Change sponsor to come up with more cash.
Well it wasn't a hard sell. Nicole was just as moved as all the rest of the judges. She too felt the need to honour the Top 50 as a whole. Manulife stepped forward with $10,000 funding for an 11th prize, making the donation equal to the $10,000 award for each Top 10 finalists. And slowly the judges came to a consensus on Nicole Messier and her unique volunteer work.
Nicole's path to volunteerism was not easy or short. She lived through domestic conjugal violence for years. Two of her pets suffered at the hands of her abuser. This experience ended up being the seed that started Animescale, a registered charity that takes in the pets of women escaping domestic abuse. Nicole runs Animescale from the bottom-up; she founded the organization and it currently runs it right out of her home. She takes care of the animals, personally, until the owner get's back on her feet.
We hope this donation will give Animescale a big boost in the New Year. And Thank You Manulife.
Watch a slideshow profile of Nicole Messier
by CBC producer Colman Jones
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