Sharon Watkins25 year Volunteer @ PRHC - Maternal/Child Department, Queen Mary School Reading Volunteer
Sharon's Story :
I have been a volunteer, all my life. It began as a Brownie, Guide, Ranger and Ranger leader, in Windsor. That was a long time ago, and I can remember no specifics. Even today, I feel they were very formative years of my life.
In high school, I approached the Nuns at the nearby Hotel Dieu Hospital. Every Saturday, I spent the morning, on the Paediatric ward, feeding children, playing and reading to them. This predated Candy Stripers.
I did little volunteering while at university, except through the sorority I belonged to.
After marriage, and the birth of our daughters, my volunteering centred around the church and a co-op play group there, in Cornwall.
We then moved to Tillsonburg and I was a volunteer, in several roles at the church. Also, alongside my husband , a Rotarian. I enjoyed helping with their many and varied service projects. At that time , I became involved with a number of Boards, starting as a member, then becoming the Chair, of the Oxford County Children’s Aid Society, the Multi-Service Centre, and TIllsonburg Memorial
Hospital. Each position was a challenge, interesting and a straight up learning curve for me.
We then moved to Peterborough. Again, I became involved at the church in a number of roles where I continue to be in a leadership role. It was exciting to be part of the local group of Stephen Lewis Grandmothers, raising money for the Grandmothers in Sub Saharan Africa raising their orphaned grandchildren. I was among a most gifted group of women, very committed to this cause. I chaired
several fund raising events.
However, I realized that my preference was for “hands on” experiences. This led me to being a hospital volunteer. In September , I will begin my 25 th year as a volunteer in the Maternal/Child department, at PRHC. Concurrently, I became a school volunteer, first at Prince of Wales and now at Queen Mary PS. I volunteer in a Grade one classroom. The children read to me, one on one. I have always been a reader, and I hope the children learn to love reading as much as I do.
Being a volunteer is give and take. I have received much more in all my years of volunteering than I have given.