Local charities look to find more volunteers

photo courtesy of Blanket BC

With the affordability crisis hitting British Columbians hard, volunteer organizations are struggling to find volunteers.

The Blanket BC Society aims to hand out blankets at various locations along the Canada line on November 23rd and 24th, however, today they will not be at Bridgeport Station due to a lack of volunteers.

They do have enough volunteers to hand out blankets tomorrow at Bridgeport.

Co-Founder, Gregory Ould, says he attributes a lack of volunteers to people having to work more.

“This year its been really difficult. It’s like pulling teeth out of a great white shark. It’s just really tough to get some people out.”

Not the only organisation 

Blanket BC isn’t the only organization feeling the pinch to find volunteers, Meals on Wheels in Surrey/Delta has also been struggling.

Executive Director, Christine Morettin, says they need more volunteers to meet their growing clientele.

“Some are clients, of course, have medication that they take with their meals. Lunchtime is medication time. Without the volunteers that we require we cannot serve as many clients.”

According to Morettin many of their volunteers are people that have finished their career and now retired, however, she says with people retiring later it means there are fewer volunteers for their organization.

“Young people, of course, are busy, and they’re either in school or they’re working. Most of our volunteers do come from retired persons. People are retiring later, they’re staying at work longer.”

Meals on Wheels says they do have enough drivers at the moment, however, they are driving two or three times a week and if one driver goes on vacation it means other volunteers have to pick up the slack.

Ould also pointed to the affordability crisis in the province, saying “I know I live out in Mission and there is no way I could afford living anywhere closer. It’s just too expensive, I don’t know how people do it.”

How to get volunteers 

The good news for the Blanket BC Society is they say they will have enough volunteers to giving away blankets at Bridgeport station tomorrow, but they are thinking of making changes.

With Black Friday growing in popularity, Ould says they are considering moving the drive one week earlier in an attempt to get more volunteers.

He also says you can never underestimate the power of the media, citing one of the best drives they had was when he came onto Roundhouse Radio 98.3 a couple weeks prior and did an interview.

Meals on Wheels says they are hopeful more organizations will partner with them, which Morettin says helps them a lot.

“We do actually have volunteers from other companies who pay their (employees) wages well they come and volunteer for us for one day a week; which is a really exciting process and it would be great if more companies did that just to give back to the community.”

Both Ould and Morettin add that they are always looking for volunteers with their organizations and anyone who is interested shouldn’t hesitate to contact them.

For Meals on Wheels:

For the Blanket BC Society: