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Meaningful Connections: Volunteering at Parkland

April 21, 2021 Caring Communities

April 17-23, 2022 is National Volunteer Week. At Parkland we are fortunate to have many amazing volunteers spanning all our communities. Reflecting on the past year, volunteering is one of the many things that has changed due to COVID-19, but it remains more important than ever.

Due to its proximity to nearby universities, Parkland at the Gardens in Downtown Halifax has had several student volunteers. Ethan Ring, a medical student at Dalhousie University, has volunteered in the community since 2018.

“I’ve been interested in volunteering with senior living ever since I started going to school at Dalhousie and attended a volunteer expo,” says Ethan. “Starting in second year, I began broadening my field of experience and reached out to Parkland directly and they gladly took me in.”

Angela MacAdam, Move-In Coordinator at Parkland says volunteers can help with group activities or visit with residents one-on-one. “It’s just like having a buddy, or a secondary grandparent,” says Angela. “And the residents love having someone to chat with.”

When Ethan has residents that he regularly visits, assists with special events and even occasionally bartends, which has turned into part-time employment. “Ethan is such a good listener, he gets along with everyone – so much so, that residents wanted us to hire him because they wanted to see him more,” says Angela. “He really makes the time for us and we appreciate it so much. We all love to see him.”

Ethan says he enjoys seeing the residents just as much as they enjoy seeing him and encourages anyone thinking of volunteering at Parkland to do it. “Volunteering is one of the small things in life that leads to a big impact on the community. Everyone is welcome to volunteer at Parkland,” says Ethan. “It’s a wonderful community filled with people from all walks of life and an amazing staff that will help you in any way they can. It’s truly a life-changing experience!”

We are excited to welcome volunteers back to our communities. “Volunteers are so important,” says Angela. “Having someone be able to connect with residents – that’s irreplaceable and it makes such a difference in their lives.”

If you’re interested in learning more about volunteering at Parkland, please contact us.