Sandra Duchak Awarded 4-H Canada National Volunteer Leader of the Year

Sandra Duchak of Portage la Prairie, MB has been named the 4-H Canada National Volunteer Leader of the Year for 2021 in light of her remarkable 42 years as a 4-H leader, currently within Manitoba’s Gainsborough Combined 4-H Club.

The National Volunteer of the Year Award, sponsored by Co-operators, will be presented to Duchak at the 2022 4-H Canada Leadership Awards, to be held virtually on Feb. 23, 2022, with host Peter Mansbridge. To attend this landmark event and celebrate the accomplishments of the 4-H community, purchase your tickets today.

“We are proud to recognize Sandra Duchak as 4-H Canada’s National Volunteer of the Year,” said 4-H Canada CEO, Shannon Benner. “Sandra’s passion and commitment to the 4-H community is exceptional. It is inspiring to see the positive impact she has had at all levels of the 4-H movement over the last four decades, and we couldn’t be happier to honour her hard work and dedication.”

Duchak is a testament to the Award’s aim to recognize the critical role volunteer leaders play in guiding, supporting, and empowering 4-H members to become responsible and contributing leaders themselves. She is known for always being the first person to sign up to lend her time, energy, and expertise with 4-H club communications, fundraising initiatives, and activities of all kinds, from camps to crafts to sports.

However, her involvement doesn’t stop at the club level. Duchak has volunteered on the Portage District/Central Plains 4-H Area Council for over 20 years. She has also served as Area Council Treasurer for 10 years and has been in her current role of Portage 4-H Bursary Fund Treasurer for 17 years. Plus, she is currently in her fourth year serving on the Manitoba 4-H Council Board of Directors.

Sandra Duchak

A true role model for 4-H members, Duchak is well-known for her compassion and generosity to her community. To name just a few examples from a very long list, her continual contributions include donating hand-knitted blankets, sweaters, and mittens to Central Plans Cancer Services, annual participation in 4-H Manitoba’s Highway Clean-Up Campaign, and serving on the Board of Directors for the Portage Women’s Shelter.

Duchak is joining the list of deserving 4-H Canada National Volunteer Leader of the Year Award recipients, and will receive a prize package that includes a $1,000 and registration for the 2022 Leadership Summit, set for April 22-24 in Halifax, NS. 

“We are thrilled to support these Awards and recognize dedicated volunteers like Sandra, and all of the provincial winners, who are making such an important impact in their communities,” said Carla Hirsch, Co-operators District Manager in the Prairie Region. “As a long-time sponsor, we are inspired every year by 4-H and all the volunteers who, like all of us at Co-operators, are committed to improving the well-being and resiliency of young Canadians.”

In addition to the National award, Co-operators supports the Provincial Volunteer Leader of the Year Awards. 4-H Canada is pleased to announce the following recipients for 2021:

  • Angela Letendre, SK – Boreal Rangers Outdoor Adventure 4-H Club
  • Caitlin MacDougall, QC – Ormstown 4-H Club
  • Carol Pollock, ON – Wellington County 4-H Club
  • Ross Stafford, BC – Spring House 4-H Club


The National Volunteer Leader of the Year is one of four prestigious awards presented annually at the Leadership Awards, which showcase the achievements of leadership at every level of 4-H in Canada, while helping to raise important funds for the Canadian 4-H Foundation. Stay tuned as we continue to unveil award recipients in the coming weeks. To buy tickets and get full details, visit