The Gift of Time – Volunteer with Seniors’ Community Services

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by Jill Woodley

November 30 is Giving Tuesday – a global movement for giving and volunteering, taking place each year after Black Friday. Seniors’ Community Services hopes to welcome new volunteers and donors during November as we prepare for the season of giving.

The gift of time presents itself in moments that are not easily measured. Moments like lazy mornings on a snowy day in January, an afternoon playing cards with friends, or time well spent doing something you love. It is a gift we may not think about often, until it is offered in the form of a helping hand. At Seniors’ Community Services, it is the volunteers who provide this gift, and we never forget its value.

Throughout the pandemic, SCS has been so fortunate to have a core group of volunteers who stepped up during such a tremendously difficult time. They continued to ensure that the seniors in our community were able to access transportation, had the assurance of Meals on Wheels, and had a friendly voice on the phone when home visits were no longer an option. With the world opening up again, SCS is facing an increase in need, and a growing client base. As we grow in the community with more clients and expanded services, SCS is looking for volunteers to join our team.

There are many ways to be a volunteer, and so many options for your gift of time. The Diners’ Club, a weekly social luncheon for clients, is lifting some capacity limitations, and with that, we need more kitchen help. Perhaps helping as a sous-chef, setting up a beautiful room for lunch, greeting clients as they arrive, or providing transportation for some of our Diners’ Club clients, are some areas where you can help us!

In the last six months alone, SCS volunteers have organized and delivered over 3,600 prepared Meals on Wheels meals to seniors in your community. The increase in need for this service is unprecedented, and volunteers would be so welcome in the kitchen organizing the pre-packaged meals, and helping to heat some up for a warm and hearty lunch or dinner delivered right to the door. No cooking required!

Of all the volunteer jobs, transportation is often the hardest to fill. However, when you speak with a volunteer driver, it is clear this job is a wonderful one. It is truly gratifying to know that your gift of time provides seniors access to transportation and independence. Drivers provide rides to medical appointments and social events at the centre, hair appointments, the grocery store, and other important places.

A TransportClient put it this way: “Perhaps the greatest gift one can receive is found in the spirit of help. Discovering the transportation services at Seniors Community Services in Kemptville was life-changing when we needed the assistance to attend medical appointments outside the community. Welcoming, courteous, and highly dependable- three words that come to mind as I think of the Seniors Community Services team members.”

Throughout the pandemic, volunteers moved from in-home visits to friendly chats on the phone. Isolation and loneliness can be a reality when living alone, especially during the challenges of the last two years. With restrictions lifting, and more clients opening their homes to welcome visitors, volunteers are needed to fill the need. One hour a week well spent.

For more information on volunteering, please visit our website at www.seniorscs.ca, call the centre at 613-258-3203, or email carol.friesen@seniorscs.ca . We look forward to welcoming you to our team and thank you for your gift of time.

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