For 25 years, Jan Whyte has volunteered at SPLC. What started off as a flyer in the mail led to Jan’s dedication to volunteer work. After retiring from the TSO (Toronto Symphony Orchestra), Jan decided to contribute more time giving back to something she found meaningful. She started off as a Friendly Visitor, a service that matches seniors who can benefit from a weekly visit with a trained volunteer.
“Most of the individuals I visited were widows. Not only did they find so much joy in our weekly meetings, but so did I.” Jan flashes a warm smile.
After many years of working as a Friendly Visitor, Jan was approached by the Sunflower Club, an Adult Day Program for seniors with Alzheimers and Dementia at SPLC. Jan continues to volunteer on a weekly basis with the Sunflower Club.
"I prepare lunch, play games and simply speak with clients. Sometimes, that's all they need, and I just love it!" Jan beams.
Jan's work hasn't gone unnoticed, as she was recently selected by Global News for their feature, "Everyday Heroes", where she talks about her positive experience volunteering and spending time with seniors. Jan talks about the healing effects of music for individuals with Alzheimers, playing beautiful renditions on her classic violin and discusses what volunteering means to her.
This week is National Volunteer Week, a time where Canada celebrates and thanks volunteers for their selfless work. As we mark the 150th anniversary of Canada, let's honour the volunteers who make a difference in the lives of individuals everyday.
Thank you to all our volunteers for your dedication in supporting seniors.
Do you want to make a difference in the life of a senior? Contact our Volunteer Department for more information.