Ruiyi and her husband moved to Calgary in 2023, having previously resided in Ontario and Japan, where she earned a master’s in economics. With a background in finance, Ruiyi aspires to return to the field one day. Shortly after moving to Calgary however, Ruiyi felt disconnected from society and knew she needed to find a way to connect with others.

Ruiyi knew volunteering would bring her fulfillment and help her integrate into her new community.

“People helped me; I want to help others. I received help and give back and then I receive good in return. It’s a good circle.

After learning about CIWA, Ruiyi was inspired to volunteer in various roles. She was delighted to join the Tax Clinic, a role that allowed her to connect with people and stay involved in finance. Clients appreciated Ruiyi’s kindness and professionalism, often expressing their gratitude to CIWA staff for her assistance. Ruiyi consistently went above and beyond, giving more hours than requested and adapting her schedule to meet clients’ needs.

Ruiyi is grateful for the friendships she has made through volunteering. Meeting others who are new to Calgary has been a rewarding experience, allowing them to explore the city together. She appreciates the support and kindness of the CIWA staff, who have helped her develop cross-cultural communication skills. Ruiyi has learned to simplify and creatively explain concepts to newcomers, helping them understand the next steps to support their journey.

Through volunteering, Ruiyi has gained a deeper understanding of professionalism in the Canadian workplace. She thoroughly enjoyed her time in the Tax Clinic, where she had a counselling room that felt like “going into the office.” Having her own space, computer, and desk made her feel important and validated the significance of her work.

Staff proudly endorse Ruiyi, noting that “Ruiyi excelled in this area. She handled clients with equity and compassion and delivered services with precision and pride.” They praise her dedication, understanding of client confidentiality, and professionalism. Her curiosity and quick learning have earned her the trust and respect of both clients and colleagues.

Ruiyi’s journey from Japan to Canada is a testament to the power of volunteerism. Her dedication to helping others, combined with her professional skills and compassionate nature, has made a significant impact on the community. Through volunteering,

Ruiyi has found fulfillment, built meaningful connections, and developed valuable skills, demonstrating the transformative power of giving back. Her hobbies include hiking and gathering with friends. She is looking forward to camping for the first time this summer.

Want to learn more about how you can make an impact? Click here to see volunteer opportunities at CIWA.