Three Links recently had the privilege of participating in the Make a Connection program for newcomers to Canada who are interested in contributing to their community through volunteer work. Participants from Vietnam, Czech Republic, Iran, Indonesia, and the UK visited our care centre to hear about the positive impacts of spending time talking and doing activities with seniors. They spoke to long-time volunteer Cesare Stefanon, who told them how meaningful it is to connect with seniors who have given greatly to their communities and now rely on the support and kindness of others to continue feeing connected.
The group also prepared a craft for Three Links residents to complete. They collected and pressed fall leaves and flowers and cut rings from paper plates for the residents to make sun catchers for their windows.
Make a Connection, offered by the Kiwassa Neighbourhood House, is the brainchild of Three Links volunteer Martina Holblingova. Martina coordinated volunteer programs in the Czech Republic and spent time volunteering with hospice patients. When she arrived in Vancouver, she visited Three Links residents who are no longer able to speak. She sings to them and brings a doll that plays music.
Martina shares her passion for community service by introducing it to other newcomers. She takes her Make a Connection group to volunteer‐driven organizations around Vancouver for “taster sessions”. This fall, they will be volunteering at the Vancouver Aquarium, Kiwassa Neighbourhood House, and the Pacific Immigrant Resources Society.