The Tri Cities Volunteer fest took place at Coquitlam Centre on October 17 to help encourage people of all ages to volunteer in organizations around their community.
The event started at 9:30 am and ran until 6:30 pm. In total, 25 organizations making a difference in the community were set up seeking volunteers. At the event, a Passport to Volunteering was also obtainable for a chance to win a $500 shopping spree at Coquitlam Centre.unnamed
Grade 12 student Zarley Zalusky attended the Volunteer Fest and said, “It was a great event to go to and I’m glad I went. There were so many different organisations for whatever you’re interested in. It’s a great way to learn and get involved.”
The event was sponsored by “Community Volunteer Connections,” which is an organization dedicated to connecting people to volunteer opportunities, as well as to bringing communities together by creating useful volunteer commitments. This organization serves both the Tri Cities and New Westminster. It was established in 1976 and has been creating volunteer events for the past 35 years. This organization believes that it is important for youth to involve themselves in community events in order to gain leadership skills. Community Volunteer Connections also offers various programs such as the volunteer integration program, which presents an opportunity for individuals with intellectual disabilities to volunteer in their community.
Stacy Ashton, the executive director of Community Volunteer Connections said, “The number one thing we hear from people wanting to volunteer is that they aren’t sure where to start. Volunteer Festivals give people the chance to meet different organizations and find out where they might want to start. Volunteering also makes you an active part of the community. It helps build confidence, skills and makes you more informed about what it takes to make a community that works for everyone.”
The Volunteer fest runs usually on the third Saturday in October. There is also another Volunteer Festival available in New Westminster on the last Saturday in January 2016.