Dave Thackray has been named as the first recipient of the Spirit of John Howard award.
This annual award, from the John Howard Society of the North Okanagan, is given to someone in the community who has shown a commitment to social justice and encompasses compassion and respect for the most marginalized of people.
“We are honoured to be able to recognize Dave Thackray and his commitment to this community, “said Kelly Fehr, program director of the John Howard Society.
Thackray is a former probation officer, with 26 years of service between Prince George and Vernon, and recently retired as an outreach alcohol and drug clinician with Interior Health, where he worked closely with the John Howard Society.
“At first he was a key partner in JHSNOK’s Harm Reduction Addiction’s Recovery Program. He mentored staff in how to be just and fair in all circumstances and supported clients in a compassionate way while holding people accountable for their actions,” said Fehr.
In 2013 he became part of Interior Health’s primary health clinic and alcohol and drug outreach program. He continued his working relationship with the John Howard Society and started working directly with the Gateway Shelter and the most marginalized of JHSNOK’s clients.
Thackray retired in September and plans to enjoy time with his wife Viv and his children Sam and Cassie, as well as making time for his hobbies that include hockey, skiing, golf and playing with his band Feet First.
“I’m entirely grateful for the John Howard Society for making my work so much easier,” said Thackray.