2 members of Regina Anti-Poverty Ministry honoured with degrees
REGINA -- Bonnie Morton and Peter Gilmer, both with the Regina Anti-Poverty Ministry (RAPM), were honoured with doctorate of divinity degrees from the University of Saskatchewan’s St. Andrew’s College.
Morton and Gilmer were presented the honour at a live-streamed ceremony at Knox-Metropolitan United Church on Monday. Reverend Cameron Fraser led the ceremony.
“Over the past many years, they have helped to improve the situations of many many people who live in poverty,” said Fraser. “Both have worked tirelessly for years, to affect change on the poverty landscape. They are known for getting things done.”
The two are being recognized for their work with RAPM, an organization that advocates for low-income individuals, to improve access to housing, shelter and other resources.
Gilmer has been with RAPM since 1996. When asked about his greatest accomplishments with RAPM, Gilmer pointed to the organization’s work to get the province and the city to offer a discounted transit pass to low-income earners, and helping create the Saskatchewan Assured Income for Disability Program.
“I think we’ve had an influence on public policy in this province and in this city,” Gilmer said.
Morton was hired by the Downtown Chaplaincy - RAPM’s precursor - in 1987. She said her biggest accomplishment is the number of people RAPM can help on a daily basis.
“Our work is about making life better for the individual. That doesn’t always get the grandeous. So for me, when I can wake up and come to work and somebody phones me and has a problem, and I can help them get it sorted out,” said Morton.
Both Morton and Gilmer said the honorary doctorates were recognition they never expected to get, but will serve as an inspiration to keep pushing for changes.
“The fight is long from over, and we’re going to continue to fight it,” said Gilmer.