Organized at the company level by HR Manager Rose D’Aiuto, in collaboration with Volunteer West Island’s Corporate Volunteer Program, employees from SharkNinja observed their annual Impact Day by reaching out once again to the community. Teams of enthusiastic, multi-talented volunteers turned out in force to lend a hand and make a difference at non-profit organizations throughout the West Island.
Among those community groups that benefitted from the energy and generosity of SharkNinja volunteers were Moisson Montréal, the largest food bank in Canada, providing services to other food banks, families, and individuals; Omega Community Resources, a West Island resource for clients dealing with mental health challenges; and Animatch Dog Refuge that has recently had to relocate to new premises.
Activities included classifying donations, packaging and transporting stores, and organizing inventory at Moisson; cooking, baking, preparing, and serving meals at Omega Day Centre; sorting and arranging building materials and assembling structures at the new Animatch site currently under construction – and of course, playing with the Animatch Refuge dogs!
The Sheraton Montreal Airport and the Montreal Airport Marriott In-Terminal Hotel again took the initiative providing Volunteer West Island and the West Island Meals on Wheels (MOW) kitchens with 450 home-cooked turkey dinners with all the trimmings, topped off with a delicious dessert for the Holiday Season.
In addition to preparing Christmas dinners for MOW clients, the staff warmly welcomed 50 MOW volunteers with coffee, tasty treats, and good cheer on three different delivery days (December 11th, 13th, and 18th) and helped volunteers from all 12 MOW kitchens load their vehicles, in the company of the master chef, Louis Rodaros. Growing up in a family of Montreal restauranteurs, he studied in France, developing his affinity for Mediterranean cuisine, and joined the ranks of the Marriott family in 2017 as Executive Chef at the Marriott Montreal Airport In-Terminal Hotel. Those who benefit from this annual Holiday generosity are glad he did!
“We are extremely happy to collaborate with Volunteer West Island and Meals on Wheels in this wonderful initiative,” said Brenda Rodricks, General Manager of the Marriott Airport In-Terminal Hotel.
“Our hotels provide the healthy, nutritious Holiday meals and assist volunteers from Meals on Wheels who deliver them to individuals who are often homebound and alone, providing social interaction and doing a safety check at the same time, an amazing partnership in kindness.”
“It’s Brenda and her team – including Kevin Gillespie, General Manager of the Sheraton Hotel, and Chef Louis Rodaros – who orchestrated this project and accommodated the volunteers from the 12 MOW kitchens, people who work ceaselessly year-round to deliver hot meals to West Island residents. This generous gift of Holiday meals goes beyond serving the clients; it’s a respite and treat for the volunteers as well!” stated Lynda Barrett, Executive Director of Volunteer West Island.
The West Island Meals on Wheels program, an entirely volunteer-driven service, was founded in 1969. The 850 MOW volunteers serve 47,000 meals a year to seniors, and those suffering from loss of autonomy. Ms Rodricks affirmed, “It has always been a priority of the Marriott family and their hotels, to give back to the community and those in need”.
Ms Barrett confirmed the seriousness of the situation, “With an aging population, the demand for MOW is growing and we know that 12 volunteer-driven kitchens are still not enough to meet the increasing need for this crucial service in the West Island”. VWI will, in fact, be opening a MOW kitchen in Dollard-Des-Ormeaux in February 2019 in response to client needs.
With 500 hotels and resorts in more than 50 countries around the world, Marriott Hotels is evolving travel through every aspect of the guests’ stay, enabling the next generation to Travel Brilliantly (for more information, visit www.MarriottHotels.com). Close to home, they bring meaning to the sentiment of giving back to the community.
Thus, once again, the Montreal Airport Marriott In-Terminal Hotel and the Sheraton Montreal Airport joined forces with Volunteer West Island and Meals on Wheels volunteers to make a difference over the Holidays for their clients. A Happy Christmas tradition for all concerned.