Chai Blog: Meet Volunteer Yvonne
Two and a half years ago, my youngest daughter was battling cancer, with three young kids at home, and 30 weeks pregnant. I went in to Montreal to look after her and the children, and while there I witnessed the incredible support Chai Lifeline provided the whole family. From the home cooked meals, the Big Sister who gave the two little girls their special time away from the family, and the children’s programs at the Chai Lifeline centre, to the outings, parties, and special events, the support that Chai Lifeline extended to our daughter and her family was invaluable.
Over the years I have volunteered in numerous Jewish agencies, including school committees, synagogue programs, community boards, visits to isolated seniors, respite care, and kosher meals-on-wheels, and on my return to Toronto I decided I wanted to give back, in some way, to Chai Lifeline. I wanted to be a part of the great support system that is Chai Lifeline, and help families going through difficult times.
After my interview, I was quickly linked up with a lovely family that has a child with medical issues. I try to visit once a week to give the mother some respite time. I have developed a warm relationship with the sweet five-year-old; we spend our time together playing games and reading books.
Being on the hotline for Chai Lifeline meal deliveries, also gives me the opportunity to deliver the prepared meals to families experiencing serious health issues, offer a few kind words, and a warm smile. Having been on the receiving end, I understand just how important these small gestures can be.
Wishing them all a complete Refuah Shlema.