Windsor man given Lifetime Achievement Award from Kidney Foundation of Canada


Recognition for a local volunteer.

The Kidney Foundation of Canada presented Windsor resident Michael Mastronardi with the Lifetime Achievement Award at a ceremony at Willistead Manor on Monday night.


(Photo taken by AM800's Aaron Mahoney)

The foundation is a collaborative leader in the development of programs, services, research opportunities and awareness campaigns that have had a positive impact on the millions of Canadians living with or at risk of developing kidney disease. 

Officials say the Lifetime Achievement Award commemorates a life's work and devotion towards the kidney cause. 

Mastronardi, who is also the committee chair for the Windsor chapter of the Kidney Foundation, got involved because of his late wife who was impacted by kidney disease.

He says seeing what kidney disease patients go through was a motivating factor to stay involved over the years.

"I sort of took it upon myself to make it like a life long interest of mine to help out wherever I can, up to the point now where I'm the chair of the chapter. To help out with all kinds of fundraising events and peer support events."

Mastronardi says because of the general health of kidney disease patients, having to be on dialysis three times a week, it's hard for them to hold down full time jobs.

"A lot of them need assistance with medication and travel in particular like I mentioned to get to the dialysis centres and other things that come up. I guess until kidney disease is finally eradicated and there's a cure for it they'll always be a need for helping out patients, and a lot of the help that the patients get actually comes from money raised by the local chapter of the Kidney Foundation," he said.

He says it's a great honour to be recognized, and it's even more special that the person who nominated him is a friend who's also from Windsor but lives in Sarnia now.

"I'll graciously accept it for sure, but it's rewarding work. It's not like a day job where you sort of go to work because you have to to pay the bills, doing volunteer is a lot different. No matter who you volunteer for really, to help out with the cause of the association, in this case the kidney foundation of course. I feel not like it's my obligation, but it's just something I definitely want to do and keep doing as long as I can."

Mastronardi joins an elite group of people as one of the most committed volunteers and longest supporting members, with officials saying that he began his journey with the Kidney Foundation of Canada back in 1979.


(Photo taken by AM800's Aaron Mahoney)