Why I Volunteer: Meet Jaclyn
1. Of all the places in Oxford County, why did you choose to volunteer with the Alzheimer Society of Oxford?
I am a student at King’s University College studying Family Studies and Thanatology (bereavement and grief), volunteering with the Alzheimer’s society gives me an opportunity to put some of my academic knowledge to practice. Additionally, I love working with people and I am passionate about supporting those experiencing a loss. The Alzheimer Society of Oxford met with me and ensured I had a position that met these interests, as well as supported their needs.
2. How long have you been a volunteer with the Alzheimer Society of Oxford?
I met with Robyn Fox in June of 2014 to define my role, and I have been volunteering ever since!
3. What volunteer positions are you currently involved with at the Alzheimer Society of Oxford?
I am a Support Services Volunteer. I have been working with Leanne Turner to review the current programming and do some research to decide if it was still beneficial to the clients. Along with reviewing the Cuddle Bear program, I have also initiated a new program (with support from the Manitoba Alzheimer Society) for the agency called “Touch Quilts”, in which memorable fabrics can be crafted together to make a quilt that can be given to the client, meeting their comfort needs. I attended the Fleece Festival, and volunteered my time to provide information and resources about getting involved in these two programs. I have also had the opportunity to review some of the Grief Support programming, and provide feedback. As well, I attended my first Walk for Memories this year, and was able to work with the staff to create a fun and rewarding experience.
4. What is your most memorable moment from volunteering with the Alzheimer Society of Oxford?
My most memorable moment so far has been the opportunity to take part in the Fleece Festival and actually promote the Touch Quilt. This was such a rewarding experience, knowing that people were so interested in taking part in a program that you introduced.
5. What impact has volunteering at the Alzheimer Society of Oxford had on you?
I have learned that there are so many ways to support an individual with dementia. I have always known that I wanted to work with people, and having the opportunity to volunteer for the Alzheimer Society has led me to work with people, as well as do some “behind the scenes” work that is sometimes just as powerful as working directly with an individual. I have appreciated the opportunity to gain experience and knowledge, from both my research and the great people I have met from the agency, volunteers, and community members.
6. Is there anything you would like to say to encourage others to volunteer for the Alzheimer Society of Oxford?
I would encourage anyone to volunteer for the Alzheimer Society of Oxford. The careful consideration that goes into creating your role as a volunteer is phenomenal. They do not assign you to a certain role without taking into consideration your goals, expertise, talents, and passion. In addition, they are very flexible with schedules. As a full time student, working, and doing a placement, I was able to still fit in my volunteer hours due to the great flexibility of the agency. The Alzheimer Society of Oxford will be just as appreciative of your time, as you will be of your experience!
Last Updated: 05/11/15