Knowing they’re making a difference to residents has kept Ernie and Lynn Cole coming back
Ernie and Lynn Cole were honoured for their contributions to Frost Manor on May 5 during an Ontario Volunteer Service Awards presentation at the Lindsay Golf and Country Club.
The husband-and-wife musical team has been regularly volunteering at the Lindsay long-term care home for 15 years. A fan-favourite among residents, the Coles have made a positive impact on Frost Manor, says life enrichment co-ordinator Vi O’Leary.
The retired couple began volunteering simply to put their musical talents to work. They decided to perform at long-term care homes in town, Ernie tells The OMNIway.
What has kept Ernie and Lynn volunteering at Frost Manor is the fact that they are making a difference to residents. This is evident when Ernie and Lynn walk into the home, Ernie says.
“It’s the looks on the faces of the residents when we come in – they’re just so happy that we’re there,” he says.
“There is no way to explain it; you just see that look in their eyes and they’re just so happy, and we enjoy doing it because we enjoy making them happy.”
On days when Ernie and Lynn perform at Frost Manor, they will arrive early so they can spend time chatting with residents, Ernie says.
“A lot of the residents don’t have family to visit with them and talk with them, so we go in (and) spend an hour before we do our show, just chatting with them,” he says, adding that Frost Manor’s staff members are “great people to work with.”
Ontario Volunteer Service Awards are given out annually to recognize volunteers across the province who have made outstanding contributions to organizations in their community. People are nominated for awards by employees of the organizations where they volunteer.
Ernie says he and Lynn were not expecting to be recognized for their contributions to Frost Manor but are honoured to be acknowledged.
“Well, it was a big surprise,” he says. “But we certainly appreciate it – we didn’t ask (to be recognized), we just (volunteer) because we enjoy doing it, and we want to give back to the community.”
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