District of Saanich


Recreation, Community Services, & Special Events

Volunteer Opportunities

55+ Social Drop-in Program Host

Social Program Hosts are reliable and welcoming additions to Saanich Recreation Centres who enable older adults to enjoy regular social connections in a public space. This role works in collaboration with the Programmer I Older Adults Services and other volunteers to facilitate older adults in using the space to play games, have conversations, and enjoy coffee/tea and light snacks.

 

Responsibilities of the Social Program Host:

  • Open the program room 
  • Prepare the space (prepare coffee/tea/snacks, set up games, put out attendance list and nametags)
  • Greet participants as they arrive, by name, and ask how they are
  • Facilitate new participants by:
    • Introducing them to ongoing participants
    • Asking them questions and getting to know them
    • Exploring the available activities together
    • Inviting them to come back next time
  • Promote a welcoming environment by:
    • Connecting with all participants (initiate conversation, offer food/beverage, play games, bring a book or photos to stimulate discussion)
    • Ensuring the space remains accessible and equitable to all participants
    • Communicate program feedback to the Programmer I 
    • Answer questions about this program and other social opportunities as you are able
    • Direct questions you can not answer to the right people (front desk staff, other staff in the room)
  • Close the program room (put away games/crafts, put refreshments back in cupboards/fridge/freezer, compost scraps, clean dishes by hand or load/turn on the dishwasher, wipe counters)
  • Interact with staff, instructors and other volunteers in a friendly, welcoming way


Application Process:  

  • Complete a Volunteer Application (Click the blue "Fill in an application" button to start)
  • Participate in a volunteer Meet and Match interview
  • Complete a Police Information Check (free of charge!) and other required paperwork (Liability Waiver, Code of Conduct, Child/Vulnerable Persons Training)
  • Attend an onsite orientation

 

Qualifications and Desired Traits:

  • 19 years old or older
  • Proficient in the English language (other language skills are an asset)
  • Excellent interpersonal skills; pro-active, friendly, active listener, patient, empathetic 
  • Genuinely interested in interacting with those 55yrs+ and enhancing the welcoming feel of Saanich spaces to all cultural backgrounds, abilities, genders and ages
  • Able to work independently or with other volunteers with limited on-site supervision (staff is always available if needed)
  • Willing to learn about the District of Saanich, our Recreation Centres and other community services as well as program rooms (layout, entrances, and exits)

We welcome a diverse spectrum of cultural backgrounds, abilities, genders and ages! If you have a passion to better your community, please apply!

Schedule and Commitment:
This position requires a weekly commitment for a minimum of three monthsConsistent attendance is required, however we can accommodate appointments and vacations with advance notice. We are recruiting volunteers for the following shifts:

  • Mondays from 9:30am - 11:45am at Saanich Commonwealth Place
  • Mondays from 9:00am - 11:45am at G.R. Pearkes Recreation Centre 
  • Tuesdays from 12:30pm - 2:45pm at Gordon Head Recreation Centre
  • Fridays from 12:00pm - 3:45pm at Cedar Hill Recreation Centre

 

Working Conditions:  

This program occurs indoors. Volunteers will be in close proximity with others and will need to sit, stand, and move around during the program. This role may involve working independently or with another volunteer (staff is always available if needed).

 

Questions? Contact:
Lindsay Mackas-Burns

Programmer 1: Events, Volunteers & Film
volunteer@saanich.ca

250-475-5502

SpeakWell ESL Program Facilitator

 

The SpeakWell ESL English Conversation Program supports new immigrants, refugees, and other ESL learners in sharpening their English-speaking and comprehension skills. The Facilitator leads conversations around a given topic, presented through established lesson plans and assists participants with pronunciation, grammar, vocabulary development, and listening skills.

Responsibilities: 

  • Create a friendly, safe, enjoyable atmosphere and encourage people to discuss given topics.
  • Assist individuals in conversation by providing feedback and guidance on pronunciation and vocabulary as well as directly teach pronunciation and vocabulary to small groups of participants.
  • Answer questions and support participants' learning of conversational English.

Qualifications:

  • 19+ years 
  • Friendly, outgoing, and enthusiastic.
  • Interested in helping new immigrants, refugees and other ESL learners develop speaking skills to assist them to become active members of our community.
  • Ability to assist learners with pronunciation, vocabulary development as well as some basic grammar points.
  • Able to speak English fluently.
  • Teaching English as a Second Language training and teaching experience an asset.
  • Able to speak and understand additional languages is an asset.
  • Willing to meet for an informal interview
  • Willing to complete a Police Information Check

Orientation and Training:

  • Volunteer Application (Liability Waiver, Code of Conduct, Policies for Volunteers and Contractors)
  • Child Protection/Vulnerable Persons Training
  • Site and Role Orientation

Commitment and schedule: One weekly shift on Saturday afternoons between 1:00 - 3:30pm. Program runs 1:30 - 3:00pm, with a half hour of prep and clean up on either side.  A 1-year commitment is ideal; a minimum commitment of 6 months is expected.

Working Conditions:  Indoor. Required sitting, standing, and moving around the room. Requires lifting up to 20lbs.  Multipurpose room setting.  Supervised.

Contact and communication: Program Coordinator – Derek Swallow – speakwellesl@gmail.com. Programmer II: Jason Jones, 250-475-5427, e: jason.jones@saanich.ca 

Why a Conversation program? To:

  • Increase participant’s comfort and confidence speaking English through interaction with patient, friendly facilitators and other group members within a relaxed, informal environment.
  • Provide an inclusive environment where participant increase their verbal English fluency and comprehension, and enhance their English pronunciation, vocabulary, and grammar skills.
  • Provide a venue where immigrants deepen their relationship with the Saanich region by connecting with other community members, participating in community activities offered through Saanich’s Recreation centers, and hopefully meld so firmly with our community they willingly participate in community decision-making bodies such as regional boards.
  • Promote cross-cultural understanding through activities that generate cross-cultural learning.

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