The Enthusiast!: Getting Involved in Volunteering, In St. John’s

Now that the patio has grown cold, you might be looking for something else to fill your time. Volunteering is the ultimate time-filler, because there’s no upper limit on how much you can give.

It’s fall, so now that the patio has grown cold, you might be looking for something else to fill your time, especially before the Christmas rush starts and you’re depressed until May. Volunteering is the ultimate time-filler, because there’s no upper limit on how much you can give.

Eastern Health welcomes anybody over the age of 14 who can give at least three hours a week, depending on the area in which they are volunteering. eRecruit, Eastern Health’s online recruiting web page, shares the most current volunteer opportunities. You can plonk your application down there, electronically.

Even if hospitals aren’t your thing, the opportunities at Eastern Health are crazy diverse. You could assist the beauticians, the therapeutic recreation staff, or the fundraisers. You could be in charge of the library cart, or provide music and entertainment.

The Bliss Murphy Cancer Clinic needs volunteers to visit with patients and their families, as well as help drive people to and from appointments. Involvement in the Therapy Dog program is doubly-rewarding.

Speaking of puppos, the SPCA St. John’s needs people, regardless of skill set, to help out with dogs and cats at their shelter, as well as foster homes. You need to be 16 years of age and over for most volunteer roles, and be available for at least a six-month commitment.

A volunteer opportunity you may not be aware of is Rogers TV (rogerstv.com/volunteer), where hundreds of Canadians serve their communities by informing and entertaining, while getting hands-on training in many aspects of television production. Positions in studio and in the field, as well as in front of and behind the camera, are often filled by volunteers.

City of St. John’s (709-576-8628, volunteer@stjohns.ca) keeps postings of current volunteer opportunities. There a few minor hoops to jump through (online volunteer application package, RNC Code of Conduct, and Vulnerable Sector Check) but that’s a small price to pay to give the gift that keeps on giving.

At Memorial, the Student Volunteer Bureau (svb@mun.ca) is a resource centre and referral service for students interested in getting involved with volunteer work. Though they specialize in on-campus volunteer positions, they’ve got off-campus listings, too. “While we have a mandate to serve students, and they are our primary audience, the SVB acts as a hub for volunteerism in the St. John’s area,” says Student Volunteer Bureau Coordinator Meagan Campbell.

“Our volunteer listings are curated for students, but they’re available on our website for anyone to access. We currently have over 90 organizations listed, and most of them are opportunities that non-students can get involved with.”

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