“ National Volunteer Week is an annual celebration of volunteers across Canada! The National Volunteer Week theme for 2021, The Value of One, The Power of Many, reflects on the awe-inspiring acts of kindness by millions of individuals AND the magic that happens when we work together towards a common purpose…The power of people working together can bring about monumental changes.”
– Volunteer Canada
Volunteers are integral to the work at CMHA Edmonton. The incredible group of approximately 220 volunteers works to ensure that programs are delivered, the community is supported, and folks are connected to services and resources.
This April 18 – 24 is National Volunteer Week, a celebration and recognition of volunteers’ contributions across Canada. We’re taking this opportunity to send out a very special thank you to the incredible volunteers we have on the CMHA Edmonton team. Your generous support of CMHA Edmonton programs and services truly helps make mental health matter.
During the pandemic, we have seen incredible efforts being offered and put into programs across CMHA Edmonton. While some roles continue to be on pause, we are grateful for the community of volunteers sticking with us and waiting for the next opportunity to get involved. We have also seen a great number of volunteers continue to donate their time to programs and have seen some special highlights including, but certainly not limited to:
- From April 2020 – March 2021, volunteers contributed just over 13,340 hours!
- Volunteers assisted at the Gord Bamford Drive-In for Mental Health outdoor concert.
- Gaming volunteers have continued to assist in the successful running of Bingo events.
- We have started several new volunteer positions that have been able to operate virtually!
- We have welcomed approximately 90 new volunteers since March 2020 and have been fortunate to have 4 practicum students completing placements.
- During the most severe part of pandemic challenges, 51.9% of the Distress Line volunteers continued to come into the contact centre to support callers on the lines. As of November 15, 2020, the program was nearly back to pre-COVID rates, with 83.33% of the Distress Line volunteers coming for Distress Line shifts.
Giri Puligandla, Executive Director of CMHA Edmonton, has this special message for our volunteers:
“Coming into CMHA in January, I was immediately struck by the volunteer power we are fortunate to have. To say I’m grateful to you is an understatement. We couldn’t do what we do without your contributions as volunteers, from bingos to special events to the Distress Line. All of us at CMHA also recognize that this has been a challenging year, and many of your roles have been put on hold or had to adapt on the fly. We appreciate your resilience and commitment to our cause through this time. I hope that I can meet you in person over the coming months as we start to bring back activities and build a better normal.” – Giri Puligandla, Executive Director