IN THE COMMUNITY: THE CALGARY DROP-IN CENTRE
As partners of Shaw, we had the pleasure of being invited to join them in their volunteer efforts at the Calgary Drop-In Centre. Two members of our team, Troy McIsaac and Christine Dalton, spent most of last Friday lending a hand. And both were impressed with the work that’s being done at the centre to help combat homelessness and poverty in Calgary.
“It was truly an amazing experience to understand the nature of the Calgary Drop-In Center and how they help others when they’re in need; whether a person is temporarily down on their luck and needing a boost, to those that require longer term assistance,” explains Troy.
The downtown location offers numerous programs for their temporary residents, from woodworking to art; while their Northern location provides the ability to donate items such as furniture and clothes for people transitioning out of the drop-in centre, helping them get set up in their new homes and back on their feet.
The volunteer coordinator team made it easy for us to roll up our sleeves and help, and Jordan Hamilton, Manager External Relations at the Calgary Drop-in Centre provided us with a tour so we could truly understand the nature of how they help those in need, and how businesses and individuals can help – from money and donations, to volunteering time.
The Drop-In Centre is truly an amazing place, one that we plan on continuing to support.
“I never knew how much they do, how much they help” said Christine Dalton, Total Communication Services Carrier specialist. “This was my first time volunteering here, and it was a fulfilling experience. We split up into two groups. One group did a tour of the building and all the floors, the other went into the kitchen to do lunch prep, I was part of the kitchen group doing lunch prep.”
“We made soup and sandwiches and set up a huge pile before opening the window for service. Once they completed their tour, the other group took the food out to everyone waiting in the dining hall. It was fun watching the food being delivered to people in need. There were people lined up all the way down the stairs waiting for a hot meal,” explains Christine. “We fed everyone, even those lining up down the stairs; leftovers were put into baggies to hand out to people that came late or who were unable to get into the centre in time.”
She adds, “when we were walking through the hall to leave, everyone at the tables gave us a round of applause and thanked us for our help and service. It made me feel good that I was able to participate and help.”
The drop-in centre provides so much for those in need, everything from health services, counseling and support, shelter, employment education and seniors’ programs. The work that is being done is truly incredible, and our team was happy to have been a small part of it.
There is so much good being done across our city to help those who need it. We’ve all had times in our lives when we’ve needed a helping hand, and as Tim McGraw (yes, the country music super star) says,
“When you get where you’re goin’, Don’t forget to turn back around, Help the next one in line , Always stay humble and kind”.
And we were glad to have a chance to do just that! Thanks to the team at Shaw for organizing it, and a big thank you to the Calgary Drop-In Centre for their tireless work in helping change people’s lives!
As they say in their mission statement “People aren’t born on the street, nor do their lives have to end there. With help, the Calgary Drop-In Centre is where some lives begin.”