Volunteers honored at annual Governor's Volunteer Awards

Governor Branstad presented awards at the 31st annual Governor's Volunteer Awards Ceremony.

Governor Terry Branstad has made it one of his goals to make Iowa the first state in the nation in volunteerism.

Friday morning, the people who are working to make that happen were honored at the 31st annual Governor's Volunteer Awards. Friday's presentation at Indian Hills was the sixth and final ceremony honoring volunteers across the state.

Governor Branstad created the recognition program in 1982 and presented awards for the first time the following year.

Recipients were nominated from organizations such as Club M, Iowa Child Advocacy Board and Milestones Area Agency on Aging.

Four volunteers with Iowa Kids University received awards. Roberto Espinoza and Jacinto Rivera told KTVO why they volunteer.

"Because I like helping kids out and making them better for the future," Rivera said.

"I like to help them the way that they did to me, because I used to be in the program, so I just want to give the gift back to them," said Espinoza.

Students from Job Corps were also on hand to assist throughout the ceremony.

Volunteers in Iowa contribute nearly 80 million hours of service a year. They also have an estimated economic impact of $2 billion annually.