The new year is here, and many are looking for ways to get involved in our community. Here are four local organizations with volunteer opportunities. 

 

Bethesda Place 

Make a resident’s day by spending time with them at Bethesda Place.  

Recreation Coordinator Kim Gunson from Bethesda Place says that their recreation program is based on having the community involved. 

“Because that's what they [the residents] used to do. A lot of our residents used to love being part of the community, so we're just trying to find ways of allowing them to have that quality of life with others.” 

Volunteers can join residents in many different activities, from reading and crafts, to playing bingo and other games. 

Gunson notes the last few years have been tough with the restrictions disabling volunteers to come in and interact with the residents. 

Having volunteers play a game and have a conversation with residents brings them happiness.  

“Their time would be wonderful at any care home, especially at Bethesda Place. We're looking for somebody that you know is compassionate, that is creative, that wants make somebody else's life better.” 

If that somebody sounds like you, reach out to Gunson to sign up. 

“Even if it's one day a week, or a month, the residents would appreciate that.” 

Those interested in volunteering can contact Gunson through email at kgunson@southernhealth.ca or call her at (204) 346-5168. She adds that those interested in volunteering can also come in and pick up a package from the receptionist to fill out. The volunteer application form can also be found on southernhealth.ca. 

 

Hanover Ag 

Hanover Ag has many different ways to volunteer within the organization.  

You can take on a shift, become a part of the core team, or be a board member. They have a range of opportunities available based on interest and availability.  

Board Member Carla Campbell says before she was on the board, she would ask to be put in positions around people. 

“I would work a food booth or a front gate time slot. And you would see people, you'd be able to answer questions, and that personal communication was what I enjoyed when I was volunteering for shifts.” 

Campbell says without volunteers, they wouldn’t have an organization. 

“The board members are all volunteers, our core committee, they're volunteers.” 

If you are interested in volunteering, there are multiple ways to get connected with Hanover Ag. You can visit hanoverag.com and fill out the contact sheet, contact any of the board members, or reach out through Facebook or Instagram. 

 

Pat Porter Active Living Centre 

Pat Porter is a great place to feel fulfilled and give back to the community. It’s a great place to volunteer, especially if you don’t want to go out of your comfort zone.  

Program/Volunteer Coordinator Rachel Cull says there are many different positions you can sign up for.  

You can clear snow, do dishes, fold laundry, or even clean up puzzles and games. 

“There's always something that needs to be done around here,” she says. “A lot of times we have clerical duties that need to be done, or even driving patients to doctor's appointments, or picking up groceries.” 

Cull says that volunteers are a “very critical part of Pat Porter and serving seniors.” 

“We need them and they help us so much. Without them, the jobs just don't get done as well and as quickly and as wonderfully as they do. Our volunteers are incredible.”  

She says people love volunteering at Pat Porter as it’s a place where everybody can feel like they belong. 

"We don't have a specific age that you have to be or meet any kind of criteria. It's nice because everybody feels included." 

Visit Pat Porter Active Living Centre to fill out an application form that has boxes with availability and different areas to volunteer. 

 

Rest Haven 

Rest Haven would be glad to have you as a volunteer during the mornings, afternoons, or evenings. 

Tannis Nickel, Director of Resident Care says the activities differ depending on the time of day. 

In the mornings they have activities like church, coffee time, and devotions. 

Then in the evenings, some examples would be games like chess, singing, and playing piano. 

Nickel says the volunteers enjoy their time at Rest Haven. 

“When people are volunteering, it is a joyful experience for them. They are receiving as much as they give, if not more.” 

She says new volunteers are always good because they have different skillsets. 

"We have some residents that love playing chess, but not a lot of staff challenge these people enough,” she says. “So if we could have some volunteers that like playing chess, crocheting, or knitting, that would be great.” 

When you sign up to volunteer at Rest Haven, they look at your interests and availability, and from there they tailor a position for you. 

“It basically involves going to our website, havengroup.ca, and filling out the application form. You would be contacted and go through all of our checks, and we would fit you in as best as we can."

You can find local organizations that are looking for volunteers in the Business Directory right here.  And discover volunteer opportunities or organizations can post volunteer needs at Local Job Shop right here

With files from Carly Koop