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Volunteer Trends for Today and Tomorrow

Volunteering is a great place to be! It always has been, and these days, volunteer opportunities include something for everyone: individuals, young people, community service organizations – such as Scouts, religious groups, Rotary Club, sports teams, and so forth – and corporate partners. In addition to the ongoing and crucial support of individual volunteers, we are seeing a steady rise in student and youth involvement, as well as a substantial and continuing growth in corporate volunteering.

The interest in volunteering has grown among young people and we find increasing support from the educational sector – last year there were more than 550 youth volunteers working in conjunction with Volunteer West Island, compared to 40 student volunteers at the beginning of the Youth Volunteer Program.

Corporate Volunteer Programs are proliferating and expanding – in 2008 at VWI there were just three corporate partners participating at one-off events; this number had grown to 25 companies in 2013 with over 1,560 employee-volunteers participating at 65 volunteer events. Each year the number of volunteers and events increases substantially. Moreover, the VWI Corporate Volunteer Program adds new volunteer options by actively seeking and warmly welcoming new community partners into the fold, as well as incorporating new ways for corporate partners to get involved in their communities, suited to their particular interests and schedule preferences.

Corporate Volunteer Programs are proliferating and expanding – in 2008 at VWI there were just three corporate partners participating at one-off events; this number had grown to 25 companies in 2013 with over 1,560 employee-volunteers participating at 65 volunteer events. Each year the number of volunteers and events increases substantially. Moreover, the VWI Corporate Volunteer Program adds new volunteer options by actively seeking and warmly welcoming new community partners into the fold, as well as incorporating new ways for corporate partners to get involved in their communities, suited to their particular interests and schedule preferences.

Companies themselves benefit. Research findings show that, along with increased company visibility in the community and recognition as a good corporate citizen, group volunteer work results in growth of team building, job satisfaction, and employee retention among participants. Frequently employees return to volunteer in the community as individuals after a positive corporate volunteer experience with their company, often recruiting their children and other family members to lend a hand as well, bringing the experience full circle!

As potential volunteers we might ask ourselves: What’s in it for me? Volunteering is a way to meet people, use our knowledge, or develop new skills. Volunteer work offers a place to belong and a way to make a difference in our community.

An added bonus is that volunteer work familiarizes volunteers with the many resources available in the community through the non-profit organizations providing residents with crucial services. At some point in time, most individuals, their families, friends or colleagues will require the help of such organizations so it’s good to know what’s out there!

Volunteer bureaus can offer a choice of individual, youth, or group volunteer opportunities suited to the volunteers’ interests and availability and will liaise with volunteers and community organizations in need of assistance. Volunteer West Island is affiliated with FCABQ and Volunteer Canada.

For more information about programs, services, and group volunteering opportunities at Volunteer West Island, we invite you to consult the VWI website, www.cabvwi.org. To speak with the Individual, Youth, or Corporate Volunteer Recruitment Coordinator, please call (514) 457-5445 Extension 227, 226, or 229, respectively.

With volunteers and community organizations working together, there are endless possibilities for making our community a better place to live, work, and play. Get involved. Join the team!

Volunteers Make the World Go Round, Especially in Community Work!

Volunteers are strong.
Volunteers are open to possibilities.
Volunteers use their abilities on behalf of others.
Volunteers help non-profit organizations provide crucial services.
Volunteers awaken talents they didn’t know they possessed.
Volunteers develop new skills.
Volunteers are involved people.
Volunteers make commitments.
Volunteers welcome challenges.
Volunteers immerse themselves in their work from head to toe.
Volunteers make things happen!
Volunteers make a community strong!

Do good.
Feel good.
Volunteer!

Volunteer West Island Hosts Cabane a sucre for Volunteers!

Over 100 guests attended Volunteer west Island’s recent celebration, a cabane a sucre luncheon, to recognize and thank volunteers for their contributions. Volunteers from the 13 Meals on Wheels kitchens serving the West Island; Frozen Meals deliverers; in-house helpers such as receptionists; teachers and animators for VWI’s numerous classes and activities for seniors; tax service preparers were among those in attendance.

Red and white checked curtains framing woodland scenes lent a festive ambiance to the event as Bill Steszyn who volunteers with a variety of community groups providing the gift of music to listeners, played lively tunes on the accordion.

Several invitees turned performers themselves, participating in an animated spoon music contest!

The luncheon was an ideal opportunity for volunteers to mix and mingle amidst tantalizing aromas and enjoy hearty food, and for VWI to thank them for all that they do to make a difference in their community.

Volunteering is a good place to be!