THIS year's The Herald GM Citizen of the Year could not stop whispering "Thank you, Jesus, thank you, Jesus" after finding out she had won.
Uitenhage's Alida Davis was named the winner at a gala event at the Athenaeum in Central, Port Elizabeth, on Friday.
The guests, some with tears running down their faces as Davis's story was told, gave her a standing ovation as she jumped up and down on the stage in excitement.
The annual event, which started in 1989, is about honouring people who make a positive difference in their communities.
The Herald and Weekend Post editor Heather Robertson said there were amazing people in the city who needed to be celebrated.
The Schauderville Chapter Three band took the guests on a trip down memory lane as they sang everything from classic R&B to blues.
Comedian Kurt Schoonraad, the master of ceremonies, had people in stitches with his quips, while Mount Pleasant singer Stuart Reece serenaded the audience.
Glitz and glam were the order of the evening as people came out in their numbers to support the nominees. They ululated and whistled for their favourites as the 12 finalists were honoured for their work.
Five finalists were then chosen from the 12. Besides Davis, they were Glenda Brunette, who looks after creches in Walmer township, Nosi Ncoyo, who started the Vision4Women mentorship programme, Volkswagen employee Sondisa Magajana, who teaches judo to deaf, visually impaired and physically disabled children, and Ellen Lovemore, who is passionate about early childhood development in Walmer township.
Davis fosters children, helps families and funds soup kitchens in Uitenhage. "God is doing amazing things through me, and being recognised for the work I do after 33 years is phenomenal," she said.