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VOLT program lends helping hand to Greater Vancouver Food Bank

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Maggie Stewart, the event coordinator for VOLT’s volunteer trip to the food bank. Photo by Caitlin O’Flanagan.

Reported by Caitlin O’Flanagan

Langara’s VOLT Program partnered with Langara alumni to stock, shelf and sort at a local food bank last Thursday.

This Community Change Event is part of a campaign called November is Outstanding and had Langara students and alumni come together to help sort food at the Greater Vancouver Food Bank.

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The VOLT program meets in Langara’s Hub by the bookstore. Photo by Caitlin O’Flanagan.

Langara’s VOLT program was instrumental in the creation of this event, as it offers students volunteer opportunities on campus and in the community. 13 volunteers from the VOLT program attended the event, combining for a total 49 volunteer hours.

Personal and community benefits are a strong incentive for volunteers

“The mission of the VOLT program is to promote community engagement, social awareness and student development through volunteerism,” said Maggie Stewart, event coordinator.

Stewart said she enjoys working with local charities and organizations and that she was happy to have a hand in starting this event.

“This is the first time we’ve done it and it’s very exciting to see old students mingle with new students and really form those connections across campus but also across our community,” she said.

Spencer Cotton, a psychology student, has been a part of the program for all three of her years at Langara. She participated in the event on Thursday and had the opportunity to meet some of the alumni.

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VOLT’s next volunteer event is called Plant Change and takes place on Nov. 25. Volunteers will help removing invasive species from the Pacific Spirit Regional Park. Photo by Caitlin O’Flanagan.

“Meeting people, making friends and making a difference in the community,” Cotton said are some of the things she finds most rewarding about volunteering for the program.

High involvement continues with future events

VOLT’s newest initiative, the Community Change Program, has been running for just over a year and already has 100 participants and over 400 volunteer service hours.

Other departments have also supported the food bank this semester, and when Kevin Smith, a design instructor at Langara, started a food drive with his students, he was blown away by their enthusiasm.

“Some soap ended up in there and some marshmallows for the kids, you know thoughtful stuff, so it was really great,” Smith said.

The next volunteer opportunity with the VOLT program is the Plant Change event, which is coming up on Saturday, Nov 26 in Pacific Spirit Regional Park.

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