Participation Builds Your Community: An Interview with Jennifer Manns

What long-time Board Member has to say about volunteering for the Community:

Why did you Volunteer in Cambrian Heights?

I first became a Board Member over 12 years ago at an Annual General Meeting. I was one of the only attendees of the meeting so I was able to get a good sense of what the Board did and the real need for Volunteers.  I was asked if I wanted to help out and I said “Yes!”
 I had a young family at the time and as we had enjoyed many Community functions, I thought it was important to be part of the Association to make sure others were able to enjoy these events as well! I started as the Cambrian Heights School Liason as our kids went to the school and it was a good fit. I then became the Membership Coordinator and continue to hold that position and have helped out and attended many events.
What Benefit do you derive from participation in the Community? 
I have found that being a member of the Community Association has allowed me to be more connected to our neighbourhood. We have lived in Cambrian Heights for over 23 years and being part of the board over stages in our life has been a great way to build friendships, have a voice in your community and how it evolves over time and give back to others.
I found that by volunteering that you really are an important cog in the community, ensuring there are resources to run the facility and events to build and sustain that community. I have a special fondness for the Annual Halloween Party and have been involved in running it for over 10 years.
Why would I recommend that others participate? 
The Community Association is about Building Community and engaging with others. In this age of technology, Netflix and so many activities available outside your community, it’s important to get out of your bubble to make sure that you are an active part of the place you live.
The Community Association is ALL volunteer run! Board members, like other community members, have active busy lives, with kids, work, activities and hobbies and so the more people we get involved, the less effort is required. “Many hands make light work!”
I would encourage all residents that if you have ever attended and enjoyed any community programs or events that you consider volunteering at an event. Even cleaning up after the event is welcomed! I am positive you will meet someone new and have a good time!
What is the monthly time commitment? 
In addition to our monthly meetings, my Membership position takes a couple of hours a month.
The rest of the time I volunteer is based on what I can provide to help out with ongoing events. Again, I appreciate the time donated by those who have stepped up to try out a new idea or organize an event, so I will help out when I can. By organizing ticket sales prior to the event, volunteering at the event, or set up or take down. It is really up to you how much time you can provide. And it is always very much appreciated!

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