Meet Doreen. She volunteers with the New Friends and Neighbourhood Groups program as a facilitator.

Doreen was born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba. She holds a Bachelor of Science, a Bachelor of Education, as well as a Master of Science in Education. She has a wealth of experience as a teacher as well as a practicing marriage and family therapist.

Doreen believes that education and interpersonal relationships go hand-in-hand which has led her to actively seek out a volunteer role that could combine these two passions. Eventually she was introduced to the New Friends and Neighbourhood Groups program at CIWA where felt she discovered the perfect opportunity to help empower immigrant women while being involved meaningfully in the community.

Doreen began volunteering with CIWA in 2017. As a volunteer facilitator she collaborates with other volunteers to plan and lead activities in which the participants form meaningful friendships, enhance their spoken English, all while learning about life in Calgary and in Canada. She has been a steadfast volunteer with the same group for the past 3 years. She enjoys being in a group of women who have ‘unbelievable curiosity’ and enjoys doing every little bit to help them from recapping the news, to learning idioms together, learning about government, Canadian culture and more.

“Each week my goal is to stimulate curiosity in the women to go further.”

She believes that the benefits of volunteering is a two-way street; the women in her group learn and grow from the weekly activities she facilitates but she also learns a lot about other cultures. She enjoys seeing friendships form between the women as they enter into each other’s lives.

Doreen deserves to be honoured as Volunteer of the Month because she was diligent even when the group was small and has seen it substantially grow. She has gone above and beyond the call of duty at times to step in and sub at other groups when necessary. The group participants praise her for her genuine and caring spirit and appreciate the engaging ways she brings the group together. She has a tremendous ability to lead such a diverse group of women in a way that is inclusive and safe.

Doreen enjoys travelling with her husband to visit their children and grandchildren and also enjoys writing, outdoor winter sports, swimming, and her small hobby farm in her spare time.

Congratulations, Doreen for being Volunteer of the Month for March!

To learn more about volunteer opportunities click here.

To learn more about CIWA’s New Friends and Neighbourhood Groups program click here.