Consider Volunteering in Our Community

Published on February 20, 2020

The February MPP column in Community Voice  

Last year I launched the Community Volunteer Initiative to raise the level of awareness on the benefits volunteering offers individuals. My aim is to encourage greater volunteer engagement in our community and provide information that may get residents involved with volunteer activities that interest them.

As part of this initiative I recently hosted a Community Volunteer Roundtable Discussion with community groups and organizations from Kanata and West Carleton. The roundtable prompted conversations about strengthening the culture of volunteerism in our community. We probed how to get more residents involved and how to create a stronger network of people and organizations that can share ideas. We came to better understand how to reinforce the rewarding experiences volunteers have in giving of themselves to better the community. I think I can speak for all participants in saying it was an invigorating afternoon. Given its success, I will be hosting more volunteer discussion roundtables in the future.

The MPP Community Office has been a resource centre for the volunteer initiative. My staff is relaying information from groups looking for some public exposure. It is also redirecting calls from people interested in volunteering, and suggesting organizations that might interest them.

Each week on my Facebook page and with Twitter I am profiling a volunteer organization and its good work in the community. I provide the contact information for the public to connect, sign up and contribute. Read more about this volunteer feature in the news section of my webpage: www.MerrileeFullerton.ca. For any community group or volunteer organization that may wish to be profiled, please connect with the Community Office.

At the core of the Community Volunteer Initiative is the belief that there is a vitally important relationship between community and volunteer groups. The sign of a healthy community is the vibrancy of its community groups and volunteer organizations; and vise-versa -- strong volunteer groups make for active and enriched communities.

In so many ways volunteerism strengthens the community. It develops social networks of people and fosters friendships and a greater understanding of each other. It also provides essential programs and services that can help to bond groups of people and neighbourhoods.

Let me take this opportunity to encourage everyone to volunteer with a community group that interests you.

 

And finally I wish to remind everyone that West Carleton and Kanata residents are invited to the second of my “MPP Skates” to be held on Monday, March 16 (start of March Break) at the Cavanagh Sensplex in Kinburn. The details are found on my website: www.MerrileeFullerton.ca.