By Submitted Article on April 17, 2020.
ALBERTA HEALTH SERVICES
National Volunteer Week 2020 is quickly approaching and starts this Sunday, running from April 19 to April 25. This year’s theme is “It’s time to applaud this country’s volunteers.”
Volunteers contribute to strengthening communities across the nation, and without their support, many programs, events, and initiatives would not be possible. According to Volunteer Canada, Canadians volunteered an average of two billion hours in 2013, highlighting the tremendous work that is accomplished. Youth aged 15-19 were noted to be the most prevalent to volunteer, while older adults ages 65-74 retained the most hours. Within Alberta, the Volunteer Alberta 2013 Survey results found that 50.5 per cent of people volunteer, with an average of 161 hours each year.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many people may be asking how they can help. As social distancing is required to help prevent the spread of the virus, many people may be feeling alone. Being disconnected from social interactions can be challenging, and staying connected via phone, email, video chat or messenger can help provide comfort during the pandemic. Remember to check in with family, friends and members of your community, and thank all the volunteers within your life.
If you think about all the programs and events that take place within our communities, many would not occur without the generous support of volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering during the global emergency, there are also online volunteer opportunities available. For example, currently, Volunteer Lethbridge is looking for individuals to help send positive messages to local seniors. Check-in calls, email or video chats can brighten someone’s day, particularly when they have little social interaction.
During National Volunteer Week, let us thank all the volunteers in our lives by sending positivity their way. I also want to take a moment to thank all the health-care workers, front-line workers, emergency services, researchers, and essential services volunteers and employees for the tremendous job they are doing. People have been coming out of retirement or volunteering their time and skills to aid in the global health crisis; we thank you. To all the volunteers putting in extra time and taking extra shifts, we thank you. And to all the volunteers staying home and practising social distancing, we thank you. Even though we can’t celebrate National Volunteer Week physically together this year, we can spread positivity and light throughout our communities.
For information on volunteer opportunities in Canada, please visit: >https://volunteer.ca/.
For information on COVID-19, please visit: https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/