As anyone who has worked with or for a charity will tell you, volunteers are the backbone of the organization. They commit their time, their services, and sometimes, their money- which is so important to an organization that has a limited amount of resources. Volunteers are motivated by a cause that has touched them in some way, by the desire to make a difference in their community or as a way to learn more about an important issue. The reasons vary with each individual, but one thing is for sure: it makes an impact not only on their own life, but that of others.
About a year ago, we were pleased to be given the opportunity to oversee the Volunteer Program at the Northeast Cancer Centre (previously managed by the Canadian Cancer Society). If you have been to the Centre before, you will have noticed a group of volunteers who’s task it is to help patients to their medical appointments, show them to their exam rooms, help fill out forms, or offer a light snack or beverage if needed. More often, they become someone’s ear or shoulder to lean on. These “angels” are a blessing to us, and truly represent the high-quality care patients and their loved ones receive when treated in our Centre.
When talking about volunteers, we cannot forget to include those who come out year after year to help out with our fundraising events. Some come up with an idea and organize events from beginning to end, others are members of our organizing committees, some solicit donations and prizes, and of course many lend a hand on event day. No matter their role, each and every one of them contributes to the Foundation’s mission: to help fund patient care, new equipment purchases and leading-edge cancer research for patients of Northeastern Ontario. An event’s success is all about the people and community behind it, and we are proud to be a part of so many wonderful achievements!
Do you volunteer? If you do, what motivates you? If you don’t- what’s holding you back? One thing that every volunteer will tell you: it’s so rewarding! It provides you with something, a feeling, unlike any other. If anything, it can lead to a sense of self-worth, a feeling of accomplishment or cherished friendships. We all need a little sunshine in our day and we believe that giving your time to a worthy cause can provide that for you. Give it a try- and let us know how its been for you!