Showing posts with label volunteers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label volunteers. Show all posts

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Volunteer Opportunity - Cemetery Cleanup at St. James Anglican, Carbonear

Volunteer Cemetery Enthusiasts Wanted!

We've posted here and here about the ongoing cemetery conservation project underway at St. James Anglican Church in Carbonear, one of the Foundation's Registered Heritage Structures. You can read about the designation of the building here.

This Saturday, July 29th, 2017, from 9am-12pm, the cemetery committee is organizing a cemetery bee! Volunteers are invited to come help with some of the brush clearance, and to assist with opening up the historic formal entrance pathway to the churchyard, which has become overgrown over the years. The plan is to be able to have the pathway cleared back by the end of the summer, and to re-open on the historic iron gates which have been shut for some time.  Members of the cemetery committee will be on site to talk about the church, the cemetery project, and what they've uncovered so far, and I'll be there to answer your questions about graveyards, tombstone symbolism, and the do's and don'ts of cleaning up your own historic cemeteries and churchyards. We might even be able to offer you a cup of tea!

This is an outdoor, hands-on activity, so please have appropriate clothing, workboots, gloves, hats, sunblock, bug spray, etc. If you have your own loppers/pruning shears/secateurs, bring them along. Just curious, and want to see what we are up to? Come for a chat!

The church is located at 13 Bond Street, Carbonear [click here for map] with plenty of parking to the north side of the church hall. See you in Carbonear on Saturday morning!

- Dale Jarvis

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Living Heritage Podcast Ep062 Retaining and Recruiting Volunteers

Debbie O'Rielly is Coordinator for Volunteer Mount Pearl (VMP), an office created in 2014 by the Mount Pearl Sport Alliance. VMP was established to address the volunteer needs of community groups in the Mount Pearl area, and to act as a hub to connect volunteers and the groups that need them. Debbie does community outreach with seniors, youth and all those in between. She provides volunteer related news and shares volunteer job details on her website, through social media and in a quarterly newsletter. We talk about the work and objectives of Volunteer Mount Pearl, retaining and recruiting volunteers, using social media, linking youth with seniors, bread and raspberry jam making workshops, the Art of Storytelling project, and community gardens.

Download the MP3

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

A Life-Changing Experience: Memories of City of St. John’s Volunteers Booklet Launch

Lossie Trask, Linda Furey, Marie Ryall, Ruby Hann, Terra Barrett, Dale Jarvis, and Mayor Dennis O'Keefe at the booklet launch. 
On Tuesday the Heritage Foundation and the City of St. John’s Community Services Department launched the booklet A Life-Changing Experience: Memories of City of St. John’s Volunteers. The booklet launch took place in the Foran Green Room of City Hall at the Council Meeting. The five volunteers who were interviewed for the booklet came out and were treated to some snacks before being invited into the Council Meeting where the booklet and the women were recognized.

A Life-Changing Experience: Memories of City of St. John’s Volunteers is the first booklet in the Collective Memories Series produced by the Heritage Foundation. This booklet focuses on the experience of five City of St. John’s volunteers and their reflections and advice on volunteering in the community. The bulk of the work for this project was completed by Conservation Corps summer student Sarah Hannon who completed interviews, transcribed, and edited the booklet.

The volunteer booklet is part of the foundation’s Collective Memories Project. This project is an initiative of the Intangible Cultural Heritage Office of the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador, with funding provided by the Department of Children, Seniors, and Social Development. The Collective Memories Project invites seniors to record their stories and memories for sharing.

If you want to learn more you can head to to hear the full interviews or you can check out PDF here!

~Terra Barrett

Friday, October 7, 2016

Booklet Launch - Memories of City of St. John’s Volunteers

City of St. John's Volunteers and Heritage Foundation employees.
Booklet Launch - Memories of City of St. John’s Volunteers
The Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador and the City of St. John’s Community Services Department present a booklet launch at the Public Council Meeting in the Foran Green Room, St. John’s City Hall on Tuesday October 11, 2016 from 4:30-5:00pm.

A Life-Changing Experience: Memories of City of St. John’s Volunteers is the first booklet in the Collective Memories Series produced by the Heritage Foundation. This booklet focuses on the experience of five City of St. John’s volunteers and their reflections and advice on volunteering in the community.

“This is an excellent opportunity to showcase some of the City of St. John’s volunteers, and to learn from their experience,” says the foundation’s folklorist Dale Jarvis. “If you are interested in learning more about volunteering this booklet is a wonderful little resource.”

The volunteer booklet is part of the foundation’s Collective Memories Project. This project is an initiative of the Intangible Cultural Heritage Office of the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador, with funding provided by the Department of Children, Seniors, and Social Development. The Collective Memories Project invites seniors to record their stories and memories for sharing.

The booklet launch is open to the public and there will be copies of the booklet available at the launch as well as a PDF version which will be placed online. For more information on the booklet launch or for information on how your community can get involved with the Collective Memories Project please go to or call Terra Barrett at 1-888-739-1892 ext. 5.

Monday, September 26, 2016

The City of St. John's Volunteers: Lossie Trask

Lossie Trask was born and raised in Port Blandford. She moved to Grand Falls at age 15, where she met her husband and started a family. Eventually they moved to St. John’s for work, where they lived together until her husband passed away. Shortly thereafter, Lossie began to receive brochures in the mail to volunteer for Senior’s Outreach. At first, she wasn’t sure.

“I said “I don’t want to do that!” But my daughter kept pushing me, and she said “Come on, let’s go!” So she got me out and before I knew it I was in it. And I never stopped.”

“It’ll maybe make your life a bit longer by being out around people. You almost have a lighter step. You feel good, you go into your house that you spend many days in, and you feel better about coming in and looking at your surroundings. I do, I know I did, because there was a time when I came in and said ‘I don’t want to be here’.”

Lossie is an upbeat, open person; it is hard to imagine her any other way. It is clear that she is the type of person to make the most of every day, and that she believes in the power of volunteering.

Monday, September 19, 2016

The City of St. John's Volunteers: Marie Ryall

Marie Ryall with her volunteer awards. Photo taken by Terra Barrett.

Marie Ryall grew up in the West end of St. John’s. Her daughter, Rhonda, lives in Nova Scotia with her husband. They have three children, and Marie is now the proud great grandma of four.

Marie considers her life in two stages: before and after the accident. In 1990, she was in a head-on collision while driving to Nova Scotia to visit her daughter for Christmas:

“It was a life-changing experience. After the accident my marriage broke up, and that’s when I started to live for myself.”

For Marie, living for herself meant a chance to help others. “Because I was so lucky that I had lived, I wanted to get into volunteering with those who are less fortunate than me and who experienced likewise. I just want to be part of a team that’s out there helping others. You know, and it gives me a sense of purpose. As I said, it’s a two way street. You help someone, you’ll get it back millions of times over.”

During Marie’s working years, she collected for the Cancer Society and the Heart and Stroke Foundation and was team captain of the Arthritis Society in her area. After she was diagnosed with fibromyalgia she helped to launch a support group for sufferers of the disease. She continues to volunteer at the Miller Center Veteran’s Pavilion, has been volunteering at the Agnes Pratt Nursing Home since 2001, and is an active member of the City of St. John’s Senior’s Outreach Program. Once a year, she helps out with the Children’s Wish Foundation.

”When I look back over the years and realize how many new friends I’ve made through volunteering, and the events that I’ve experienced getting involved with them and their families, it gives me such a very, very gratifying feeling. My motto is that by helping others you help yourself.”

Monday, September 12, 2016

The City of St. John's Volunteers: Ruby Hann

Ruby Hann with her Volunteer Award. Photo taken by Terra Barrett.

Ruby Hann was born and raisedin downtown St. John’s. She is a mother of three and a proud grandmother of many.

Ruby began volunteering at the Miller Center at the Senior’s Resource Center when she retired about thirty years ago. She has always had a great deal of respect for seniors.

One woman in particular has been an inspiration for Ruby: Ivy, another senior volunteer, who had a massive stroke which left her paralyzed on one side and unable to speak. According to Ruby, Ivy came back to the Senior’s Resource Center dances and began learning to speak again.

When Ruby is at home, her door is always open. “They know here if my door is closed I’m either gone out, or I’m having a shower, or I’m having a nap.” She is well-known at Kenny’s Park Apartments, where she has sometimes been mistaken for the building superintendent because of her helpful nature and involvement with the community.

As for aging, Ruby embraces her life as an older person: “I’m a very happy senior, and I’m very proud that I’m a senior, actually. People say ‘how old are you?’ and I say ‘I’m eighty!’ Ah! ‘You’re not eighty!’ Yes I am, unless they made a mistake on my birth certificate! But that’s me.”

“I feel for other people - differently. You know, I have always sympathized with people but now I can see. Me being a senior, I can see.”

Monday, September 5, 2016

The City of St. John's Volunteers: Linda Furey

Linda Furey. Photo taken by Terra Barrett.

Linda Furey was born in Torbay and attributes her interest in community work to her family. According to Linda, her mother was always involved in the neighbourhood and local churches:

“Mom always had a houseful. On the weekends the women would all get together and we all had to do our share of whatever had to be done. I used to help out with the churches when they’d have a dinner on. I was about 18 when I started.”

Helping out really does seem to run in Linda’s family. Her volunteer initiative has been an inspiration for her grandson, who, like her, has learned the importance of showing respect through service to others.

“My grandson will help anybody. He helped out when they had the parade on Armistice Day - there was a man trying to get into the church, and because that man couldn’t get up over the steps he went over and said ‘Use me as a walker.’ He’s 15 now, and he comes and spends the weekend with me.”

“Since I moved in here I’ve been pretty active, I haven’t stopped. I like the mingling with people. I like company. I’d have a houseful if I could! I like the fun and the enjoyment of it all. Especially the dinners and that, I’m amazed, how they all jump up to dance as soon as the music starts!”

Monday, August 29, 2016

The City of St. John's Volunteers: Kat de Metz

Kat de Metz volunteering with one of the horses
Originally from Newfoundland, Kat de Metz is an animal lover who grew up in Colorado Springs, Colorado. She credits her family for instilling in her the desire to care for creatures big and small.

“I think I was born into it. My grandmother Metz and Uncle Ed homesteaded in Alberta, where she was in charge of the two big draft horses. I look like her and I’m petite and strong also. I’ve never had a fear of animals, only respect.”

Kat told us all about her experiences caring for animals in B.C. She has rehabilitated family pets, livestock, and wild animals alike. Her wards have included everything from cats and dogs to horses, toads, and birds of all kinds. She told us what it was like to work with raccoons:

“They’ve got little, almost human-like hands with little opposable thumbs, and they are quite grabby! They’re very intelligent, and we had double locked entrances, because if they saw how you got in they would know how to get in and get out - they’re very smart! They would remember it and go ‘Ah, I can do that!’ Little hands, you know…”

Kat is presently working on a related novel, The Dragon of Tessier Place. It’s a story about Peter Easton, a certain dragon, and modern day domestic violence.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Living Heritage Podcast Ep043 About the Trefoil Guild, with Pat Burton

Pat Burton has been involved with Guiding as an adult for thirty seven years and is currently the Trefoil President for NL, a member of Killick Trefoil. She was President of Killick Trefoil Guild for seven years, and is part of the organizing committee for the National Trefoil Gathering for 350 guild members from across the county being held in St. John’s in June of this year. In addition to Guiding, she volunteers, sits on the Provincial Advisory Board for Seniors and Aging and is a member of the Collective Memories committee. We talk about her involvement with Guiding, the work of the Trefoil Guild, and the 2016 national conference of the Trefoil Guild being held in St. John's, Newfoundland.


The Living Heritage Podcast is about people who are engaged in the heritage and culture sector, from museum professionals and archivists, to tradition bearers and craftspeople - all those who keep history alive at the community level. The show is a partnership between HeritageNL and CHMR Radio. Theme music is Rythme Gitan by Latché Swing.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Volunteer opportunity with the Intangible Cultural Heritage Committee

Are you interested in Newfoundland and Labrador culture, traditions, folklore, or oral history? Are you passionate about the skills, knowledge, and stories that contribute to local heritage and our sense of place? Do you want to be involved in the work of safeguarding intangible cultural heritage? We have an opportunity for you!

Heritage Foundation of NL is looking for interested volunteers to serve on its Intangible Cultural Heritage Committee. The ICH Committee will meet 4-6 times a year in St. John’s, to advise the foundation on projects related to safeguarding local traditions. The Committee is interested in recruiting 2-3 volunteers, and we would welcome volunteers from youth to seniors and everyone in between. Volunteers from across the province are invited to apply, as there will be opportunities to participate online or by teleconference.

If you are interested, send an email stating why you want to get involved, along with a copy of your resume or CV by December 18th to:

Dale Jarvis, ICH Development Officer,

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Youth Heritage NL at Government House

Guest blog post by Heather Elliott and Lisa Daly

Last Thursday, we had the pleasure of representing Youth Heritage NL at a Volunteer Week reception hosted by the Lieutenant Governor, the Honourable Frank Fagan and Her Honour Patricia Fagan.

We’ll both admit that we were a little intimidated by the event. Heather had never been in Government House, and Lisa had been in there once on a Sunday morning when former Lieutenant Governor, Edward Roberts, stole her tour group and gave them a quick tour. That intimidation melted away as we were announced and warmly greeted by our hosts.

Lisa (left) and Heather (right) at the Volunteer Week Reception.

We spent the reception exploring the grand rooms, and asked a volunteer from Ronald McDonald House to take our picture. Turns out, we had our picture taken in one of very room where the Women’s Patriotic Association (WPA) used to hold their meetings during the First World War. They would knit socks, mitts, scarves and other items, as well as put together care packages to be shipped over to the soldiers abroad. It really was incredible to be standing where all those women had worked one hundred years ago!

Photo from The Rooms Provincial Archives, A 51-108

The reception was a wonderful way to show appreciation for volunteers, and while not everyone involved with Youth Heritage NL had the opportunity attended, the other attendees we spoke to were excited by the idea of a youth heritage group and all expect to see us accomplish great things in the near future. So know that while we are a fledgling group (and possibly currently bogged down by exams and hunting for seasonal jobs), the volunteer organizations of Newfoundland and Labrador are looking forward to working with us!

As a final note, cucumber, hollowed out and stuffed with hummus and topped with a piece of shredded carrot is really good!

Friday, May 30, 2014

Portugal Cove Cemetery Clean-Up Day

Just up the road from the Roman Catholic Church in Portugal Cove, on the side of a green hill, is the RC cemetery. It's a fairly large, sprawling cemetery, with headstones (many as old as the mid 19th century) standing in clusters through the trees. This is just one of the many interesting burial spaces that PCSP has, all of which are physical reminders of the community's long settlement history (which, no doubt, is closely connected to the fishery). Because of the historic significance of these spaces, cemeteries are worthy of attention so that they can be protected to the best of our abilities. This is a huge task in Newfoundland, as the climate is hard on the stone, and there are so many cemeteries that need attention, that it can feel overwhelming to try and protect them all. But even small measures can go a long way. The Roman Catholic Cemetery has been tended to some degree over the years, and this summer, it is schedule to have an intensive clean-up by a group of volunteer students from MUN.

The RC Church in Portugal Cove, close to the RC Cemetery.

Some of the organizers checking out the site. (I'm behind the camera!)
On June 24th, 2014, 30 to 40 students with the "Make Midterm Matter" program will be showing up to do their part. Not only will they work hard to clear brush, clean up garbage, and cut away growth from headstones, but it will also be a learning opportunity for them. They will be given a few tips for how to tend to headstones without doing any damage, as well as learn about what the symbols on the headstones mean. This day-long heritage volunteer excursion is a partnership between MUN, the HFNL, the Town of Portugal Cove and St. Phillips, and the RC Church. It's the first partnership of its kind, and we hope it continues into the future. It will be a great opportunity to raise awareness about heritage issues in our communities. Hope to see you there!

A small portion of the large cemetery space that the students will be working in. Endless growth and brush for them to tackle!