As we celebrate National Volunteer Week, it is a good time to reflect on how important volunteers are to an organization like Youth HQ. Basically, they are so important that “No volunteers = No Youth HQ”.
We are fortunate to have a strong and supportive group of grant providers to provide core funding for our programs. We also have a resourceful fund development team that develops numerous initiatives to supplement this core funding. But even with all of this we do not have adequate financial resources to provide all the vital services we offer.
Our employee team is great – dedicated, compassionate and hard-working. But it’s our volunteers who make up for the shortfall between what we want to do and what we have the resources to do. They provide the key link between our employees and our youth and they are the ones that make the programs work and are core to everything we do, including:
• Teen and adult mentors, in school and in the community – the entire Big Brothers Big Sisters program is about volunteers who are willing to give their time to support youth and to provide a positive role model;
• Fundraising support – big events like the Zed Haunted House and the Big Pursuit are a huge amount of work, and volunteers provide incredible efforts to make these events happen;
• Program support – whether its at Camp Alexo or at Boys & Girls Club programs throughout central Alberta, we rely on volunteers to enable us to offer the programming we do;
• Construction projects – the annual Weekend Warriors at Camp Alexo and numerous smaller projects at Youth HQ rely on skilled volunteers to provide upgrades we otherwise could not afford; and
• Governance – thanks to my fellow board members who bring an amazing array of skills and experiences to help lead this organization.
So, thank you to each volunteer who help us do what we do to support youth in our community. These supports are even more necessary as we go through these challenging times and I am humbled by your willingness to give. We truly appreciate everything you do.
Randy Nicholls, Board Chair