Dorothy Chizek (center, holding the small sign) was this month's recipient of the Pay It Forward Stevens County Award.

Dorothy Chizek is this month’s recipient of the Stevens County Pay It ForwardAward. Chizek is a long-time volunteer in her church, with the elderly and at the Display Gardens. Chizek was the first woman to distribute communion in her church’s parish after it was allowed by the Vatican Council. She continues to do this and brings Communion to shut-ins. For over 30 years, Chizek has done the Monday morning Communion service on the priest’s day off. She was active in serving meals at the church and is still in a mission group, sewing clothes and blankets for those in need. She has served on the Diocesan School Board and on many local church committees and is currently on the Social Justice Committee.

Chizek has been a Certified Ombudsman Volunteer for 15 years, first at the Benson nursing home and now at West Wind Village. The certification required training by the state and there is no compensation for the work. At the WCROC Horticulture Display Gardens she does what is needed; plant seeds, transplant seedlings into bigger pots; plants them in the ground; weed deadheads; pick fruit  and work at Horticulture Night as a guide or hostess. She also worked on the pocket garden on Atlantic Avenue for several years before it was converted into the current location of the Anderson Acres retail stand.

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