So if you read February’s issue, then you know we took a look at the issue of volunteering. Well, now we can tell you how you can honor the hardworking volunteers that you know!

Every year, the Jefferson Award program honors individuals who give back freely to their community. It might be someone who devotes hours to stocking the shelves of her neighborhood food pantry… and never asks for recognition. Or he tutors underprivileged children after work … and loves every second of it. They go above and beyond to make their neighborhood, their community, their city a better place to live. And central Ohio is all the better for it.

Nominate that special volunteer for a 2011 Jefferson Award! The Jefferson Award recognizes individuals who do extraordinary things in their communities without expecting reward. This awards program, presented by Nationwide and WBNS 10TV, honors 20 finalists and selects five top volunteers in a special ceremony held in April and attended by local government officials and civic leaders who appreciate the volunteer spirit. The five winners also receive a monetary award.

One of the five winners is then selected to go to Washington, DC, for a national ceremony that recognizes Jefferson Award winners from across the country. Over the last few years, two Columbus award winners have won national Jefferson Awards!

It’s so easy to do. And yet it can make a profound difference in the life of someone you know. Go to www.TheJeffersonAwards.com to nominate your super volunteer. Or pick up a nomination form at WBNS-10TV or any Franklin or Delaware County Nationwide Insurance agent. Nominations close Friday, February 11, 2011.

For more information, call the WBNS-10TV Department of Community Affairs at (614) 460-3940.