The enormous effect of volunteers throughout the pandemic cannot be underscored.
Guelph, Ontario | September 1, 2021 |
‘The Value of One, The Power of Many’ was the National Volunteer Week 2021 theme. Celebrated annually in April, National Volunteer Week aims to recognize the efforts of volunteers across Canada. From one person bringing laughter and light to a senior’s day to many volunteers working together to plant trees for the future, volunteers have impact.
As organized mass vaccination clinics close and informal volunteer groups like Vaccine Hunters Canada wrap up their day-to-day social media operations, the enormous effect of volunteers throughout the pandemic cannot be underscored.
“History has shown that in times of emergency, individuals rally together in support,” says Kim Cusimano, executive director PIN – The People and Information Network, “in the very early days of COVID-19, volunteering was halted or closed; the unknown of the virus, the potential risk and how to mitigate were key contributors.”
“Many formal volunteer roles were put on hiatus as organizations fielded their way through the rapidly evolving environment,” shares Cusimano “however, creativity and community spirit abound. Informal care mongering groups, individuals sewing masks, families painting kindness rocks, checking in on neighbours, creating birthday parades; all examples of the generosity of the human spirit.”
Volunteers, formally supporting a community benefit organization or informally showcase human spirit, the call to act was answered. Volunteers donned masks, gowns, gloves in support of vaccination clinics, they practiced safety precautions to pack and deliver food to those in need, they recognized the importance of driving an individual to a cancer treatment and more in support of community needs.
Volunteers gave their time, showcased their generosity, their care and concern for others and acted. Volunteering in person and through remote and virtual roles, each and every volunteer has had an impact as we navigate through the pandemic. A phone call, supporting a virtual program, leading through board service and more, the ‘Value of One, The Power of Many’ can be seen and felt across Canada and right here at home.
“Your community; our community, from nonprofits and charities to local business, neighbours to strangers, we are all called upon to show up with kindness and generosity of spirit and giving.” says Cusimano. While larger pandemic volunteer supporting roles are winding up, the need for volunteers remains. PIN invites our community to #DoGiveShareGW. Pledge to do 20 things for good, give $20 for good, share 20 hours for good.
“The community benefit sector is a vital component of recovery. One does not have to look far to see how this sector has impact on our lives. From your child’s volunteer sports coach to your teens mentor; your mom’s volunteer driver for chemotherapy, your grandfather’s meal delivery and so much more, this sector has impact on our lives and the lives of our entire community from food security, homelessness to climate action and other Sustainable Development Goals.” says Cusimano, “we all have the ability to contribute to the kind of community we want to live, work and play in.”
If you know a volunteer, thank them.
If you are ready to answer the call to volunteer, click here to learn more.