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Posted 16/04/2018 1:50:12 PM by Sarah Miller

Each year in April, we celebrate National Volunteer Appreciation week at the YMCA. It’s a time when organizations big and small across Canada take a moment to say thank you. At our YMCA we have a lot to be thankful for!  

In the last year, more than 800 volunteers gave more than 97,000 hours of their time to our YMCA. Our incredible volunteers devote their energy and talents to the YMCA in hundreds of ways. From teaching yoga classes to welcoming new members through the front door; facilitating English conversation clubs; coaching youth basketball teams; to advising on issues or fundraising. We literally could not do what we do without the support of our volunteers.  

So this month we're taking time to say thank you and introduce you to some of the wonderful volunteers who make our YMCA a safe, fun, welcoming place to be. If you come across any of these fine folks (or any volunteer!) at a YMCA program or membership centre, be sure to say "hi and thanks for all you do!"  

Volunteer: Adam Sharma
Membership Desk Volunteer, Tong Louie Family YMCA
From the team at Tong Louie: Adam is a wonderful membership volunteer. He always has a smile and makes sure to say hello and goodbye to every person he sees. Adam really likes to talk with and get to know people. He makes an effort to ask people how their workout was or what they have planned for the day. Members really enjoy talking to him and have often expressed what an asset he is to the team. Adam has worked so hard on building his confidence and he always tells staff how much he loves the Y. We love having Adam as a membership volunteer; he has a natural ability to make people smile. Thank you Adam for all your hard work. You showing how a smile can go such a long way. You are an inspiration to us all!


Volunteer: Kashi Mattu
Volunteer Group Fitness Instructor, Langara Family YMCA
From the team at Langara:  Kashi Mattu is a group fitness instructor who was certified as an instructor through the old Downtown Vancouver Y and has continued to volunteer with the YMCA for about 30 years. Kashi currently teaches Step and yoga classes at the Langara Y. Kashi loves to volunteer at the Y because she believes in the YMCA's inclusivity, diversity and community environment. Thank you so much Kashi for all you do! You are GREAT!

Volunteer:  Livvy Gallagher
Volunteer Program Leader and Group Leader (Counsellor), YMCA Camp Elphinstone
From the team at YMCA Camp Elphinstone: Livvy is currently in her gap year between high school and post-secondary education.  This smarty young lady is volunteering at YMCA Camp Elphinstone as a Program Leader for our Outdoor Education Centre and as a Group Leader (Counsellor) during the summer season. She arrived in BC in early March and came to our Y through the Latitude Volunteer Placement program.
Livvy was a nanny for two years, which helped her discover a passion for working with children and youth. She is thrilled to be able to volunteer with children in a variety of outdoor experiences. The team at YMCA Camp Elphinstone wants to say a big thank you to Livvy for spending time during her gap year to volunteer with kids at camp! 

Volunteer: James De La Santos
Volunteer Group Fitness Instructor, Bootcamp,
Robert Lee YMCA
From the team at Robert Lee YMCA: James has been an amazing volunteer at the YMCA since 2012. He brings an energy to his classes that makes fitness fun for everyone, and keeps his participants coming back week to week. His passion for music is evident in his bootcamp classes and if you happen to be at RLY on a Wednesday, you'll hear the fitness party going on in the gymnasium! His classes are high energy and hit every aspect of fitness including cardio, strength, core and dance. We are extremeley grateful for James! He is a huge supporter of the YMCA and we're glad to count him as a dedicated member of our community.

Volunteer: Rosario Chi Ching
Outreach Volunteer, Conversation Club Host and Facilitator, YMCA Immigrant Services

From the Immigrant Services Team: "Chi started volunteering with us in the office as an outreach volunteer in the summer of 2014. She also acts as a Host, Facilitator and helps us to plan and write the English Conversation Club guides. In her home country of Singapore, she was an adjunct lecturer in organizational behaviour and economics as well as an HR consultant. The Immigrant Services team has benefited so much from her volunteering her expertise to our programs. Chi loves volunteering at the YMCA because, "It makes me feel young, relevant and engaged with the community!" Thank you so much Chi for all that you do for our YMCA family.

These are just a few examples of the amazing people who make up our family of 800 YMCA volunteers. Follow along with us on social media for the rest of the month as we highlight more of the special people who give their time to the YMCA.

Sarah Miller

About Sarah Miller

Sarah Miller is the Manager of Digital and Internal Communications at the YMCA. When she's not busy at the Y, she likes to play piano and daydream about her next trip to a new place. Her favourite colour is purple.

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