Ginny Dennehy named YWCA Woman of Distinction 

Dennehy wins Community Building category

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Whistler's Ginny Dennehy was named a YWCA Woman of Distinction at the organization's annual awards banquet on Thursday, May 24.

"I'm still in a little bit of shock here," Dennehy said in an interview the morning after the banquet.

"It was amazing. There were over 950 people in the room and it kind of felt like I was at the Oscars."

Dennehy won in the Community Building category for the work she has done as the co-founder, along with husband Kerry, of the Kelty Patrick Dennehy Foundation in Whistler.

The YWCA Women of Distinction Awards honours women whose outstanding activities and achievements contribute to the wellbeing and future of the community.

Dennehy was one of 79 nominees in 11 categories.

"The people who were in the category I was in they were all so deserving of the award. They were amazing people who have done amazing things, so I was totally shocked to win this award because any one of those people could have won it," she said.

"They've all done great things to give back to their community, whether it's social housing or autism or eating disorders. I was very appreciative to have been chosen."

She described hearing the stories of all the women nominated and the work of the YWCA "as a kind of gut-wrenching thing."

Dennehy was presented with "a huge, amazing, beautiful glass sculpture."

The Foundation has raised over $4.1 million since its founding in 2001 to support programs for young people with depression and their families.

The charity raises and bestows monies on projects and institutions that fulfill this mandate, including the Kelty Mental Health Resource Centre at the BC Children's Hospital in Vancouver.

Dennehy said they were in the middle of "heavily raising money for the foundation to put the money towards different projects."

The foundation will be part of the upcoming Scotiabank Group Charity Challenge through the Run for Life, and is putting together its plans for the Ride for Life as part of the RBC GranFondo between Vancouver and Whistler on September 8.

For the latter she said they were still looking for riders and information for riders and donors are on the foundation's website, www.thekeltyfoundation.org.

"We're want to get people who are at all sorts of levels of riding to be a part of it," she said.

"Last year we had 30 people in our team. The more we can get joining our team and wearing our jerseys, the more awareness there will be to our cause."

"The community is so important. I feel very strongly about helping it, helping those people who suffer mental illness, depression; to talk about it, get it out in the open, to not be afraid, to get the right resources and help."

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