On July 17th, 2014, learners from BVC's Bridge and Youth in Transition leadership group had the opportunity to volunteer at the Cerebral Palsy Association in Alberta (CPAA). Learners chose this association in order to improve their knowledge and awareness of diverse communities and give their time.
On the day of volunteering, learners were both excited and a bit anxious as to what would be expected of them. Many had have never volunteered before and did not know what to expect. Learners arrived at the CPAA warehouse and received a very warm welcome from the staff. They took part in a tour of the facility, learned about cerebral palsy and had the opportunity to speak with a participant from one of the many programs offered at the association. Following the orientation, the group spent the morning loading trucks with donations, sorting clothing, packing recycling bins with bottle donations and weeding the community garden. It was hot and it was hard work, but it was fun! Learners agreed that it was a wonderful experience in giving back to their community and getting involved in a good cause.
Here are some of the things that learners had to say about their experience:
- “I felt good helping. It is my first time to volunteer and I don’t want to stop!”
- “It was fun to be outside doing the gardening. I feel so happy.”
- “It is good to support the community and make a difference. It gives me experience in my life.“
- “I can improve communication in English, make relationships and be a role model for more people to volunteer.”
- “If you don’t have money to give, you can give your time.”
- “I had a time when I needed help and people helped me. Now, I want to give back the help.”
The leadership group's commitment to volunteering in the community fosters a sense of global citizenship within all of the participants.