Charity gets its gaming grant back

VOLUNTEER TERRACE is now open five days a week with a full-time program coordinator with the restoration of its gaming money.

FREDA SCHMIDT

VOLUNTEER TERRACE is now open five days a week and has a full-time program coordinator with the restoration of its gaming money that it lost with government cutbacks two years ago.

Executive director Lovina Tyler says employees “are walking on air” with the news.

“We are able now to have the program coordinator for volunteer services five days a week,” she says.

“…and we got a little extra [money] from the city and the regional district so we’re very appreciative of that too.”

Freda Schmidt, who has worked there 12 years ago for about seven years and helped Tyler put together Volunteer Terrace, is back to be the assistant program coordinator.

“It’s a real welcome back to Freda,” says Tyler.

She’s working with Leanne Van Herd, program coordinator.

With the provincial government gaming money cutbacks at the end of 2010, Volunteer Terrace lost half of its grant money and had enough money to stay open until April 2011, but let the public know they were still in business and were “not going down,” said Tyler at the end of 2010.

Before the gaming money was restored, Van Herd was working as program coordinator three days a week and Tyler was helping her.

Schmidt is going to agencies to introduce herself, remind them of all the things that Volunteer Terrace does and find out what they need.

“It’s a joy, an absolutely 100 per cent joy to work with Volunteer Terrace and with the community,” says Schmidt.

“We’re delighted to have her back,” says Van Herd.

Schmidt’s arrival and the move to being open five-days a week comes just in time for the spring rush for volunteers.

“We’ve got volunteer requests coming in left, right and centre,” says Tyler.

The Helping Handyman program is set to start up again offering fix-it services for frail seniors on a low income and people with disabilities, who are also on a low income.

Those services include yard cleanup and work, minor plumbing, washing windows and other tasks. The handyman can also offer consultations for major repairs.

Volunteers are also needed for community events.