Jonathan Doherty honored for efforts with Self Advocate All Stars
ALBION – Jonathan Doherty has been recognized as the Volunteer of the Year in the western region of the Self-Advocacy Association of New York State.
Doherty, 33, of Albion is an active community member, volunteering with the Strawberry Festival Committee, Boy Scout Troop 164, the Albion Alumni Foundation, the Eastman at Albion Concert Series, and numerous events for The Arc of Orleans County.
Doherty also was one of the driving forces a decade ago in creating the Self Advocate All Stars, a group for developmentally disabled adults who do community service projects.
“I’m never home,” Doherty said about his busy schedule. “I like to get out in the community and support the community because I live here. It’s fun to help the different groups.”
Doherty and the Self Advocate All Stars march in parades, wash cars, present at County Legislature meetings and make other efforts to reach out to the community. Last month they added cans to collect recyclable bottles in downtown Albion. They collected $38.85 worth of bottles and cans at the Strawberry Festival.
Doherty called the Mizkan vinegar plant in Lyndonville, and the company donated six cans that the All Stars turned into recyclable collectors.
The All Stars formed in 2006. One of its early goals was to rail against official government use of the “R-word.” The County Legislature in May 2010 passed a formal resolution, telling local, state and federal governments to no longer use the word “retarded” in describing people with developmental disabilities.
The R-word is a “vicious slang” that is insulting and hurtful to people with developmental disabilities and their families, legislators said in their resolution in 2010.
Doherty said the All Stars have other events and fundraisers planned, including car washes at the Save-A-Lot in Albion from noon to 4 p.m. on July 9 and Aug. 13; a garage sale on July 15-16 at the Albion Academy at 16 West Academy St. in Albion; and a picnic at Camp Rainbow in Ridgeway on Aug. 20.