Volunteer Round Up!

Now that everyone’s settled into their fall routine, how about trying something new and different that can change the lives of those in need? You can go places, do things and meet new people by becoming a volunteer. Find out what’s new for you at Volunteer Ottawa, an agency supported by the United Way. The phone number is 613-736-5270 or you can log on to www.volunteerottawa.ca.

Driving force:

Project Upstream provides post-psychiatric clients with safe housing, support services and life skills coaching. They rely on volunteers at all stages of their program. At present, they are searching for members to serve on their volunteer board of directors and its committees. They also need volunteer drivers with vehicles to take clients to medical appointments, grocery shopping and activity programs. For more information, call Bo Turpin at 613-248-3329, ext. 127.

Kids and dogs:

Add books, and you’ve got a recipe for a great literacy program. Reading Education Assistance Dogs (READ) and their handlers visit schools and libraries throughout the school year for reading sessions. The program is looking for someone to co-ordinate and assign the teams, and to liaise with the board of directors. The time commitment is about five hours a week during the school year. Call Margot Montgomery at 613-232-2463 for more information.

Are you game?:

Long-term care facilities try to meet all the needs of their residents, with the help of volunteers who provide company, escort residents to appointments and provide what assistance is needed. The Peter D. Clark residence is looking for just such volunteers, to help with the bingo games and assist the hairdresser during the week. Mature volunteers are preferred, and you should be physically able to escort residents using a wheelchair or other assistance device. For further information, call Caroline Fifield at 613-580-2424, ext. 30063.

Listen and learn:

The Cultural Grandmother is a vital part of the holistic health services provided by the Wabano Centre for Aboriginal Health. She links the past and present of clients through traditional lore and ceremonies, and the use of arts and crafts. She needs a volunteer to help her prepare and present the program at community locations. Most of the presentations are held during the day. For more information, call Kimberley Brown at 613-748-0657, ext. 317.

Knock, knock:

November is Diabetes Awareness Month, and to mark the occasion, the Canadian Diabetes Association would like you to give them two hours of that month. The task at hand is canvassing your neighbourhood or workplace for funds to carry out research and new initiatives such as a summer camp for kids with diabetes. You can even canvass friends and family by e-mail. Both canvassers and team captains are needed. Call Amie Gibson at 613-688-5937.

Getting the picture:

The Ottawa Family Cinema Foundation is devoted to maintaining and showing the best in family friendly cinema for the community. You can be a part of this effort by volunteering in the projection room, the snack bar, the box office and even at kids’ birthday parties. There may be heavy lifting involved in some of the assignments. Call Carole Anne McNeill at 819-934-0301 for more information.

Special thanks to the Ottawa Citizen for publishing Volunteer Ottawa’s Volunteer Roundup! weekly in the City Section! Great community organizations and people are benefiting from this great column! www.ottawacitizen.com

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