I began my volunteering journey at Calgary Counselling Centre in June 2003, and I have cherished every minute of it. My journey began as I was pursuing studies in social work and was seeking to fulfill my hours. I found my love for the Centre and for the truly exceptional work they do extended beyond my studies and kept me coming back because I felt good; I felt needed. I knew I was making a difference.
My first day of volunteering is still fresh in my mind. The day I answered my first call in the Call Centre was the day I knew this experience would change my life. I became so passionate after my first day at the Centre; you realize everyone is going through something.
Being the first point of contact for people reaching out to seek help made me feel important and reassured me that my choice to volunteer was the right one; giving me the strongest sense of self-appreciation I have ever felt. Not only did I feel a warm appreciation from the clients calling in, the coordinators at the Centre were always willing to help and to make sure I felt supported and valued.
My time at the Centre has allowed me to be more open and honest as I reflect upon my own life, held me more accountable to deal with what life throws my way, and most of all, shown me the true meaning of compassion. This experience has changed my life.
In my free time I enjoy taking in concerts. I used to be a performer myself and find attending live shows to be inspiring and enjoy immersing myself into the artistic culture of music and dance.
If I could sum up my time at the Centre, I would say; uplifting to the soul, joyous and a positive learning experience. With over 10 years of experience at the Centre, almost 400 hours of my time, and countless phone conversations, I don’t plan on going anywhere; the Centre has given me a sense of belonging that I will be forever grateful for.