Celebrating National Volunteer Week April 24 - 30, 2022, Part 3

The National Volunteer Week theme for 2022, Volunteering is Empathy in Action, affirms the strong connection between volunteerism and empathy. This profoundly human connection is at the heart of healthier individuals and stronger communities.

Back to all stories | Posted on 28 April 22 in NewsBlog

Empathy is a quality that can help people relate to others and build awareness around different experiences. It connects people in ideas and actions and helps create bonds forged in common goals and aspirations. 

Volunteering can help us develop empathy, to see the world through the eyes of others. It can connect people from diverse backgrounds and life experiences, expanding our views. It can build our capacity to work collectively and contribute to a vibrant, inclusive society. 

From coast to coast to coast in formal and informal settings, volunteers create caring, collaborative, and compassionate communities. During National Volunteer Week 2022, we celebrate the contributions of Canada’s millions of volunteers: their actions, their understanding, and their genuine concern for the world around them. 

Volunteering, putting empathy into action, can build communities where people feel happier, healthier, and more welcome – creating a stronger, more connected Canada. 

This year we've asked some of  our Community Ambassadors about their experiences volunteering with Mary's Meals Canada.

Meet Ishani

Tell us a little bit about you. Where are you from, what is your job, where do you live, etc.

My name is Ishani and I am from Fort McMurray Alberta. My job within Mary’s Meals team is VP of Communications and Outreach along with Community Ambassador. In the upcoming fall year, I will be taking on the role of co-presidency. Currently, I live in Edmonton as I am an undergraduate student here at the University of Alberta.

How long have you been a Mary's Meals volunteer?

I have been working with Mary’s Meal since June 2020. We first started the group in Fort McMurray and later in the year during September 2021, we started our second group in Edmonton.

How did you first learn of Mary’s Meals?

I learned about Mary’s Meals through a close friend. He was very passionate about what Mary’s Meals stand for.

It’s a big commitment to volunteer your time with a charity – what made you want to get involved?

I got involved with the team since my friends were in it. During our free time, we would hang out anyway, so it was better to support a great cause during that time.

What are your day-to-day tasks as a volunteer?

Some of my day-to-day tasks involve pursuing sponsorships for events when necessary, in coordination with the VP of Finance. I am also responsible for monitoring and responding to general inquiries sent to the general email address. I work with the VP of Events on joint projects and ventures and send out newsletters, periodically, outlining the progress of the organization. Lastly, I also coordinate with the President regarding communication with Mary’s Meals Canada.

What are the best aspects of your role as a volunteer?

The best part of volunteering is getting to host events that people enjoy and get to learn more about Mary’s Meals.

What is your best memory from your time as a volunteer?

The best memory would have to be when we got $175 in sponsorships for an event. This encouraged more people to come out and attend the event since we had great prizes.

Can you think of another volunteer that you spend time with or an act you have witnessed that has inspired you?

Working with the VP of Marketing has inspired me as that job requires the most time commitment and creativity.

What does being a Mary’s Meals volunteer mean to you?

Being Mary’s Meals volunteer means bringing awareness to future generations.

What would you say to someone who is looking to volunteer with Mary’s Meals?

I would say to pursue it. It was the best choice I have made, the little things made the biggest differences.