“We are here today to recognize people that are not in the spotlight as the volunteers," Dromm said in a speech at the annual award ceremony at the Elmhurst Senior Center. "I want to say 'thanks' for their wonderful work for the community,”
Dromm, chairman of the council's Immigration Committee, said that his district is the most diverse in the city. One of his platforms is making a connection with the communities that are often discriminated against, such as the LGBT population and immigrants.
That is one reason why Dromm made it his duty to attend the award ceremony, held by Healthy Family and Aging Services, which has made a difference in families’ lives, especially immigrant families, since 1992.
Each year, the organization recognizes individuals who are role models within their communities. At this year’s award ceremony, the organization honored model volunteers who have freely contributed their time to improve the lives of the elderly at the Elmhurst Senior Center.
David Shin, a Korean immigrant and Healthy Family and Aging Services president, has crossed paths with Dromm before when he taught Shin’s son at P.S. 199 in Sunnyside before being elected.
“I want to say thank you to Mr. Shin," said Dromm. "He does a great job in putting community together.”
Fun Kim, a 15-year-old 9th grader who sporadically works for Kim, was one volunteer who was recognized.
“I want to help him, it makes me feel good,” he said.
A Korean band was also honored. This year the band C3 raised $5,000 for the tornado relief effort in the Midwest.
The members of C3 first met during a summer youth program.
“It is nice to get recognition for the help we did for others,” said Eric Han, 17.
As the ceremony carried on, the honorees were not the only ones who were happy.
“It is not easy to deal with people of a different background," said Judith Moreno, a 70-year-old Columbian immigrant. "Here it feels easier to get along with each other.”