Volunteer Spotlight: Darrell
Darrell is a volunteer with WoodGreen’s Community Connections program. For the last 4 years, Darrell has dedicated his efforts to help internationally-trained professionals and new Canadians find meaningful employment. Since COVID-19 forced the suspension of many in-person services, Darrell has designed and delivered virtual events for newcomers to practice their networking and language skills. He also continues to lead, design and deliver panel workshops on Canadian workplace best practices, featuring incredible experts who were once newcomers themselves.
Volunteer Spotlight: Ashwini
Ashwini is a French Language Facilitator for the Community Connections program. She runs the virtual Easy French Conversation Circle for newcomers and making a commitment every Saturday to fully engage the students, sharing fun and practical French dialogues. Ashwini says, “I like to interact with people originating from different backgrounds and I get a chance to do so in WoodGreen. Like me, most of them are new immigrants and I can relate with them very well. People helped me when I was new to this country and this is my chance to give back to the community”.
Volunteer Spotlight: Alia
Alia is a Walk-in Counselling Volunteer Clinician who joined the program in August 2019. Alia has gone above and beyond her regular role to assist the clinic in pivoting to an online model. She is always willing to see any client, test out new technology, and contribute to the conversation. Alia endeavors to support WoodGreen in its continuous effort to create a strong resource for clients.
“I love the supportive and learning environment of WG. I enjoy meeting the different volunteers who have great insight on mental health. Most of all I like assisting clients in seeing their potential and helping them grow.” Alia said.
Volunteer Spotlight: Leonie
Leonie, a volunteer with the Friendly Visiting and Medical Escort program has committed to respond to the program needs during the pandemic. Leonie joined the program in February 2018 and has been doing friendly calls each week to vulnerable seniors. “Through volunteering with WG I’ve met many different people from all walks of life who have great stories to tell.” said Leonie.
“Being a part of their lives, albeit briefly, is a very enriching experience and makes me appreciate all the good things I have in my own life. I also like the fact that WoodGreen provides volunteers with programs for their own self-improvement such as first aid training. All in all, the last two years volunteering with WG has been a very positive experience”.
Volunteer Spotlight: Zoya
Zoya, a resident form Crescent Town, was eager to get involved in volunteering for the Community Response Team led by WoodGreen’s Inter-Professional Care (IPC) program. “When I first heard about the pandemic, one of my immediate concerns was about the safety of my community,” said Zoya, a Crescent Town resident. “I was looking for ways to help out with the pandemic, I wanted to contribute in more ways than staying at home and physical distancing. So, when I heard about the Community Response Team, I was thrilled to join and be involved in volunteer work that is directed towards the safety of my community.”
Along with regularly checking in with their neighbours, volunteers connect residents with the resources that are available online, or in the Community. The volunteers also meet virtually every week to discuss community concerns and WoodGreen staff relay information with the Advisory Team which would help further improve the initiative and efforts to decrease the spread of the virus in the area.