Once again, Van Buren has been recognized with the Arkansas Volunteer Community of the Year Award by amassing more than a quarter million hours of community service last year.

The award was presented during the 2018 Arkansas Municipal League Winter Conference in Fort Smith.

Other cities to receive the Volunteer of the Year Award were Benton, Bentonville, Clarkridge, Clarksville, Everton, Fort Smith, Greenbrier, Jonesboro, Marianna, Mountain Home and Siloam Springs.

“It’s an honor,” said Van Buren Mayor Robert Freeman. “It truly demonstrates the healthy, productive partnerships we have in our city. Several organizations and their members work diligently to make Van Buren a great place to live. To once again receive this honor, says a lot about our city.”

With a population of just under 28,000 Van Buren had 13,269 volunteers contribute 328,025 hours of civic service in 2017.

“The Department of Human Services believes that community problems are best solved through the power of people,” said Shana Chaplin, deputy chief of faith based partnerships for the DHS office of communications and community engagement. “The Arkansas Volunteer Community of the Year Award recognizes cities that are effectively encouraging the service of their citizens, and tapping into their knowledge and creativity to collectively solve pressing local challenges.”

The Arkansas Volunteer Community of the Year Awards are sponsored by the office of the governor, the Arkansas Municipal League, the Governor’s Advisory Commission on National Service and Volunteerism and OCCE.

The Arkansas Department of Transportation provides signs at prominent locations designating the communities as recipients of the award.