It’s time to step up

Oceanside residents have lots of time on their hands, so maybe they should spread it around

I was happy to see John Harding’s editorial in the Oct. 22 edition of The NEWS. (‘Time to Step Up’).

I have been actively volunteering for the last five years in a number of capacities, and I have noticed, even in that relatively short time, that volunteer organizations that I have worked with that were once vibrant and volunteer supported are now limping along, barely surviving with only a handful of dedicated people carrying the load.

These people will eventually burn out and then the organization and the programs and events that they run will be jeopardy.

Last year I came to the News to ask them to do a story on Bike for Your Life, a one day event in August that encourages families and individuals to ride bikes. I have been involved with them for a couple of years and last year a number of key volunteers, who had more than done their part, resigned from the board. I asked for volunteers to help on the board and explained that the work was light.

It is a one day event, it is not a lot of work for a group to handle. We did not get one single response. We held our AGM this week and not one new person attended for the second year in a row. There were only six people at the meeting.

We are perilously close to not being able to put on this event. As the number of volunteers shrinks, each of our work loads increases. Eventually we will burn out and there will be no one to replace us. Bicycling is popular in Oceanside, surely there are people out there who are willing to donate some hours throughout the year to put on a fun event to help introduce others to an activity that they love.

I was saddened to learn that the Bethlehem Walk is canceled this year due to lack of leadership. It is a big job, and the people who have done it in the past have done an amazing job. I hope someone steps up to take it on.

Everyone’s lives are busy, but contributing to your community is important. Turn off the TV for a few hours and get involved. The rewards are many. You can find a cause that aligns with your value system. The community needs you.

Someone needs to help. You are someone.

Maria Yerema

 

Parksville