It is perhaps little known about OUR VOLUNTEER PROGRAM helping many individuals and families in distress; whether it be drug or alcohol recovery, assistance with codependency issues, food distribution, resources for tired individuals, respite through Mental Health, Fine Option Program through Saskatchewan Justice, using our truck to help move single moms and families with few resources.
Our volunteers have proven to be the most faithful and diligent individuals I have ever known. In 2004, when I was awarded the Saskatchewan Order of Merit which recognized the community service provided through Cedar Lodge, I was allowed to bring two guests to the Premier's banquet. Upon sharing with the Premier that without my right hand people, I would not be receiving this incredible honour and I asked if I might invite them to the banquet also. There was no hesitation on his part and hence 16 members of our team attended also.
To rave about our volunteers, let me say this! Kaiser Permanente, which is the largest health care provider in the United States, did a serious study on volunteerism around the world. Not to our surprise Canadians come out on top for numbers of hours per capita donated. But more amazing still was the information that in spite of the great contribution of volunteers worldwide, it was noted that for one individual to take two weeks out of one year was considered a ‘miracle.'
What then could 10 years, 365 days each year, day in and day out, often more than 16 hours a day, WITHOUT PAY and with little recognition, be considered??
I would have to say that it would be nothing short of … OUT OF THIS WORLD !! Many of the volunteers at Cedar Lodge have been with me for the full ten years and some longer going back to when we started our food distribution program and had a soup kitchen on 20th Street in Saskatoon.
Over the years we have received hundreds of thank you notes and letters from literally around the globe. We are pleased to share a few with you here.