Defeat Duchenne Canada is proud to sponsor The Michael Woodward/ Defeat Duchenne Canada Community Service Award, given each year to a graduating student at Saunders Secondary School for exceptional achievement and outstanding service to others. This year, the award was presented to Zeinab Zammar.
This young woman has shown extraordinary commitment to Saunders through her involvement in the Student Athletic Association for four years with this year being an executive member. Throughout her high school career, she has been part of the Muslim Student Association, Reach for the Top, the Chess, Drama, Art, Fishing, badminton clubs as well as the Science Olympics and Guitar Ensemble. In grade 10, she was the recipient of the OSSTF Grade 10 Citizenship award and worked with the Sisters Youth Group.
Over the years, she has lent her spare time to helping coach elementary school students as well as working for non-profit organizations such as H.appi, helping to raise money for Syrian Children and newcomers to Canada to attend summer camp.
In grade 9, she was on the track and badminton teams and then in grade 10, she decided to add the rugby, wrestling and basketball teams. In grade 11, she ended up with a 2nd place at WOSSA with basketball and a 1st place at WOSSA and showing at OFSAA in Wrestling. At the Saunders Athletic Banquet, she was awarded the top award in athletics with the Outstanding Graduating Athlete Award.
Zeinab’s other leadership roles have included Math Aid for three years, being an assistant coach for the W. Sherwood Fox public school wrestling team as well as involvement in the Powerpuff Football game to raise awareness for Breast Cancer.
Zeinab has also completed four years of French at Saunders and successfully finished the DELF exam (Diplôme d’études en langue française) at the A2 level. She was also Saunders’ female nominee for the top graduating athlete in London SPECTRA award (Sportsmanship, Participation, Excellence, Character, Teamwork, Respect and Achievement).
In her capacity as a leader, she has given her time and energy to many events at Saunders, all while maintaining a 90 percent average. She plans on attending Western University this fall to study Kinesiology with the goal of becoming a Pediatrician.
The Michael Woodward/Defeat Duchenne Canada Community Service Award
This award is named in memory of an extraordinary volunteer, Michael Woodward. Michael was among the original group of five people who gathered around the table in December of 1993 and created Defeat Duchenne Canada.
Michael had enjoyed a 40 year career in television journalism specializing in medicine, science and the environment. Michael Woodward penned the notes at that first informal meeting and as Defeat Duchenne Canada grew over the years he became secretary and a lifetime member of the Board of Directors. His grammar and spelling were impeccable. Michael never missed a meeting until just before he died in January of 2008, at the age of 75.
Michael was one of the original ‘road warriors’ in 1995. He helped chart the route that John and Jesse travelled. He did everything that had to be done from folding the laundry and making the hot dogs to setting up interviews and driving the motor home. Michael always had a soft spot in his heart for Jesse and he never wavered in his dedication to Defeat Duchenne Canada. He was ‘fiercely loyal.’
Defeat Duchenne Canada congratulates Zeinab on her accomplishments and we thank her for carrying on the values of community and excellence that Michael Woodward embodied.