Volunteers celebrated for their ‘hands-on’ approach at Streamway Villa

Cobourg LTC home treats 20 volunteers to a barbecue to thank them for their hard work

Streamway Villa has lots of “hands-on volunteers”; volunteers who work directly with residents or with their hands to spruce up the Cobourg long-term care home, so management wanted a volunteer appreciation party to reflect that.

On Sept. 29, Streamway Villa hosted its volunteer appreciation barbecue which attracted about 20 volunteers, one of the biggest turnouts ever, to the annual event, says life enrichment co-ordinator Christina Doughty.

Volunteers perform many duties at the home. From doing one-to-one programming to church services to pet therapy to calling bingo, volunteers help enrich residents’ lives and assist staff members, Christina says.

Volunteers played a large role in beautifying Streamway’s gardens earlier this year, which has left a lasting impression, she adds.

Given the “hands-on approach” volunteers have taken, Christina thought it would be appropriate to treat volunteers to special gifts of scented hand soap with cards attached that read, “You are hands down the best.”

Residents created a large paper sign for the barbecue that read “Our volunteers are the BEST! Hands down.”

“We have a lot of hands-on volunteers, so I wanted something geared towards being hands-on,” Christina says.

The afternoon barbecue offered volunteers hamburgers, hot dogs, salads and punch. Musical entertainment from a fiddling duo capped off the two-hour event.

“Our volunteers were over the moon,” Christina says. “We have a lot of new volunteers and a lot of family volunteers as well, and they take a lot of pride in their work, so to be acknowledged the way that we acknowledged them made them very pleased.”

Most OMNI Health Care long-term care homes host their volunteer appreciation events in April during National Volunteer Week (April 7-13 this year). However, spring is already a busy time at Streamway Villa and Christina says the home likes to host its volunteer appreciation events just as soon as summer – the busiest time of the year for volunteers – is coming to a close.

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