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Recognising KESKUS volunteers during National Volunteer Week

Updated: Apr 18

Update # 213

Raivo Remmel, Markus Viirland and Rein Kuris (back row) and Laas Hess (centre, front) pose with Members of Ontario's Legislature who recognised their dedication and commitment to Toronto Estonian House to KESKUS

Canada's National Volunteer Week runs April 14-20, 2024 and on April 16th, 2024, at the Royal Ontario Museum, several Ontario Members of Parliament recognized Estonian volunteers for their commitment and dedication, including seven volunteers to Estonian House in Toronto Ltd. and KESKUS International Estonian Centre.

Raivo Remmel, was awarded recognition for his 25 years of volunteerism with Estonian House in Toronto Ltd., shepherding it through its most challenging years, and warmly thanked for their more than five years of service were Rein Kuris, Laas Hess, Markus Viirland. Recognised in absentia (though friends and family were on hand to receive their awards) were Veiko Parming, Mihkel Liik and Peter Viitre,

Watch the key moments for KESKUS and Toronto Estonian House volunteers here:

Congratulating the volunteer service award recipients were members of Ontario's Legislature: Christine Hogarth MPP Etobicoke-Lakeshore, Robin Martin MPP Eglinton-Lawrence, Stephanie Bowman MPP Don Valley West, Marit Stiles MPP Davenport, Jill Andrew MPP Toronto-St. Paul's, and in their remarks, they quoted Mohammed Ali, who said "Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth", and noted that the recipients "embody the best of the Ontario spirit", to "create a stronger and more vibrant Ontario."

People eating hors d'oeuvres at a reception
Reception for volunteer service award recipients and their friends and families at the ROM

Great thanks is owed to everyone who volunteers with their time, energy, and expertise on this project, and the April 16th ceremony was, as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau noted in his statement on National Volunteer Week, an opportunity to "come together to recognize the generosity and invaluable contributions of Canadian volunteers to our communities – and to our world." And so it is with thanks that we recognise the volunteer energy and in our diaspora community.

KESKUS International Estonian Centre in downtown Toronto will be a dynamic hub showcasing our rich heritage and promoting Estonian innovation. It will be a vibrant gathering place for Estonians of all generations and backgrounds to connect, celebrate, and share our culture and achievements with each other and the world.

Read more about the project by signing up for the newsletter here.


Get involved and help support our future

Please join the growing list of KESKUS capital campaign donors to help bring KESKUS to completion. KESKUS leadership donors are recognized here.

There are many ways to make a contribution to KESKUS. 

  • To donate, click here, or call +1.647.250.7136 or email Donations may be made as a family gift, or in honour of an individual or family. All donations are issued a tax receipt, in Canada via Estonian Arts Centre, US tax receipts via Myriad USA and Estonian tax receipts via Eesti Rahvuskultuuri Fond. Donations by credit card may be made here.

  • Legacy gifts made to the Estonian Arts Centre, the charity associated with KESKUS, are creative and tax-effective ways to provide support. These are known as “planned gifts” because with thoughtful planning, we create a win-win situation that benefits both you and our community for generations to come.  Find out how to provide a bequest in your will by going to

  • For information on making other types of planned gifts, including gifts of appreciated securities or insurance policies, or if you have any other questions, please contact EAC Donations Manager Taimi Hooper via email at or phone +1.647.250.7136.

Let’s keep in touch

  • Visit the KESKUS website for all the latest news

  • Sign up for the KESKUS monthly email newsletter

  • Follow us on Facebook @EestiKeskus, X @keskus, Instagram @keskus.iec


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