Honouring the hard work and dedication from their volunteers, Community Care Concepts hosted a luncheon to show how much they appreciate the donated time.
This past year, the non-profit organization had 172 volunteers donate over 9,000 hours – the equivalent of five full time staff members. The volunteers cover jobs like driving people to medical appointments and delivering meals to those who can’t provide for themselves.
Karla Frey is the community outreach coordinator at CCC and says it is not often you get all of the volunteers in one room. The organization hosted the luncheon at the Wellesley Community Centre on the afternoon of Apr. 22.
“We could never pay back the volunteers for what they do. They are what I call priceless. We are a non-profit charity based organization, so we can’t go with an extravagant Rolex watches and all that, so we just want to give them a little treat to tell them that their work matters, and you count and we have remembered you,” she said with a smile. “They are important to us. We just wanted to treat them to lunch and some time together to meet each other and see who their fellow comrades are. It is a good time for the staff to meet the volunteers as well. It gives our staff a chance to say hello.”
Cathy Harrington, executive director at CCC stressed the importance of forming relationships and getting all of the volunteers together to celebrate a job well done.
“When people are volunteering in several of our roles, they are often doing it one-on-one, whether it is delivering someone a meal, or driving them to the doctor, so coming to an event like this really helps understand the full impact and how you contribute in a much bigger way,” she said.
CCC is always looking for more volunteers to lend a helping hand as they expand their programs and the need within the community grows.
“We need more volunteers,” said Harrington. “There are so many people in our community who have a variety of needs, but volunteering also helps individuals meet needs that are important to them. It is an opportunity to get out and get engaged in your community and it is an opportunity to give back. We are very, very fortunate across the townships that we work in, that people have a real sense of wanting to help those in need and volunteering provides that opportunity to give back. It is as little or as much as you can give.”
Tom Hinz was one of the volunteers at the luncheon. He delivers meals to people who don’t get out of their houses very often. He says there is a special kind of satisfaction that comes from donating his time.
“I get very much enjoyment out of it. You walk in, and some of the people, they may not have seen anybody else all day,” he said, adding that he hopes others can start volunteering and get the same kind of personal reward. “You like to stop in and talk for a few minutes. It breaks up your day, especially if you have nothing else to do. Someone has probably volunteered to help you along the way.”
Paul Good from New Hamburg helps out by driving all over the province, delivering people to medical offices, hospitals and specialists for their appointments when they normally wouldn’t be able to make the trip.
“I have been doing it for 15 years at least. I have stopped counting. I really enjoy meeting new people and I enjoy driving,” he said. “It has been a wonderful experience. People who don’t volunteer are missing out on a lot of pleasure.”
After eating their chicken and salad and cherry cheesecake lunch, the group was treated to some entertainment and a few words of thanks for their dedication.
Whether you have one hour available or 20 hours available, to find out how to volunteer with Community Care Concepts, visit their website at www.communitycareconcepts.ca.