Volunteers are a vital part of what happens at TAPS. They bring experience, skills, caring and sometimes daring initiatives to the time they spend with us. They assist with programs, fundraising, provide entertainment and help create a safe, fun and friendly atmosphere. The role volunteers play as part of the TAPS team is absolutely essential. If you were to drop in to TAPS, you would see people mingling, activities and tasks being done, and you might be hard pressed to tell who is who: staff, participant, family, visitor or volunteer? The atmosphere is one of welcoming participation. Did I mention silliness, jokes and teasing in the mix?
From April 10th to April 13th we recognized and celebrated those who are able to commit to being regular volunteers and fulfilling key roles that make such a difference at TAPS.
Our volunteers include the Krafty Kronys, the Happy Voices group, Tai Chi instructors, book club and art volunteers, piano player Joanne Wilson, Voice of Experience writers, our vehicle maintenance angel Jim Daniels, and many other regular and on call volunteers. We hosted a lunch in their honor and our Assistant Coordinator Wendy Garland did a great job of acknowledging and in some cases ‘roasting’ each person. Volunteers were also presented with a floral gift – thanks to Morris Flowers for the attractive arrangements which everyone loved.
In addition to the regular programming, staff have begun to arrange a series of guest speakers.
Lois Price spoke to our seniors about the Creston Refugee Committee, and Christine Munkerud presented what will be a series of Pioneer Stories. Her original stories were published in the Creston Valley Advance some years ago.
Another informative and entertaining event we are looking forward to is an afternoon on Doukhobor Culture with the Ewashen Brothers (Larry, Alex and Bob). The afternoon will include a traditional Doukhobor lunch, Russian folk songs and poetry.
We’ve also had a visit from the NDP incumbent Michelle Mungall, who joined us for lunch and met with folks individually and as a group. Kim Charlesworth of the Green Party will be joining us in the next week.
Food for thought: How do you define a ‘senior’? Has it in fact become a generalization that is perhaps in need of review? This came up at a recent meeting of “Raising the Profile” in Nelson. The Raising the Profile Project (RPP) is a new provincial network whose goal is to highlight the key role played by non-profit and municipal community-based seniors’ services in supporting seniors to build new social connections, remain physically and mentally active, and retain their independence for as long as possible. To find out more about this initiative go to: http://www.seniorsraisingtheprofile.ca/
TAPS operates under the auspices of Valley Community Services. If you are considering a donation or would like to know about our Legacy Endowment Fund please visit www.valley.services or contact the VCS office at 250-428-5547 for more information.