Okotoks will have to wait just another year to honour volunteers within the community. 

The Annual Volunteer Leadership Awards have been happening since their creation in 1996. 

The event is a partnership between the Town of Okotoks, Western Wheel, and Okotoks Rotary Club and celebrates the contributions and accomplishments of outstanding volunteers in our community. 

Traditionally, the annual awards recognize involvement in the community and leaders through two categories: the Leaders of Tomorrow and the Heart of Okotoks awards.

Leaders of Tomorrow recognized outstanding young people who have made exceptional contributions to helping others. Three awards are to be handed out with one going to each level of education: elementary, junior, and high school. 

This year's awards will be put on hold says Okotoks Rotary Club president, Jeff Foss.

This will allow the planning committee to look back at previous years and make improvements to the program in order to provide the community with a meaningful volunteer recognition event.

"We're going to be doing a focus group session with a group of students ranging from elementary to high school from both school divisions led by a couple of leaders in the school divisions," says Foss.

The goal is to find an event that celebrates youth and honours them at the same time. Focusing on what the program was initially intended to be focused on which is the student of the town. Understanding what would be meaningful for them in terms of what is recognized, who recognizes and how it's recognized and celebrated.

The planning is still in its early stages but Foss hopes it becomes an event hosted by kids for kids in a large group setting. 

"Maybe get the Pason arena filled with all the kids that earned their way there because of their volunteerism and then celebrate those that have chosen as being the ones at each of the elementary junior and senior high levels.

They still plan on having an event for the Heart of Okotoks and adult leaders but hosted separately from the youth events. 

"Really what we're waiting to hear is what the kids want."