Volunteer Week Spotlight: Linda Tannis, 44 Years of Volunteer Work
Linda is more than a volunteer, she’s family! She has been an invaluable asset to The Dementia Society during the past 19 years, and she shows no sign of slowing down now. She is also celebrating 25 years as a volunteer for The Good Companions – that’s a staggering 44 years combined of volunteer service to just two organizations! It’s incredible to consider everything Linda does and has done for people with dementia and caregivers in the Ottawa region. She has described her volunteer experience in her own words, so here are those words:
“I began volunteering in the office on Carling Avenue very early in 2000, and learned shortly afterwards that [we] were moving to the Perley. By that time, I was already hooked and enjoying my work in the office there, so I carried on to the Perley location.
For me, volunteering at The Dementia Society is a way to give back to the community. I specifically chose to volunteer at The Dementia Society as a way to give thanks, knowing from personal experience the excellent services and programs offered not only to those suffering with dementia but also their caregivers. The caring, compassionate support I received helped guide me as I cared for my Mom through the various stages of her illness. I also took part in the Daughters Support Group offered at that time, and appreciated the information they shared, and the opportunity to share ideas and concerns with others experiencing a similar situation.
The Dementia Society continues to make a difference in the lives of so many, and I look forward to working with them each week.
I would encourage anyone whose family or friends have been touched by dementia not only to reach out for support, but also to consider volunteering. The feeling of being a small part of this exceptional team is one of the many benefits you will experience, and an added bonus is you will make new friends along the way. Volunteering also helps keep us mentally stimulated, and one may also learn new skills.
My wish is that families touched by dementia will feel comfortable to call and speak with the caring, compassionate Dementia Care Coaches who are very knowledgeable about the various types of dementia, the progression of the disease, and who are very willing to discuss any worrisome situations or concerns that might arise for either the person suffering with dementia or the caregivers themselves.
When I’m not volunteering at The Dementia Society I am volunteering at The Good Companions, a wonderful place for seniors, where I am celebrating twenty-five years of volunteer service. My hobbies include genealogy and reading, and I feel especially blessed to have a wonderful husband and son.”
Thank you Linda for everything you do in the community, your neighbours and peers are much better off for having you around!