Shari's Volunteer Story


At the time of my retirement, 15 years ago, I knew that I wanted to be a volunteer and become involved in something where I could serve and help others and my community. I felt a connection to the Alzheimer Society as my oldest brother had been diagnosed a few years earlier with Alzheimer’s. As well as being a volunteer, I also hoped to become more informed about Alzheimer’s disease through their programs offered to family and caregivers.

I phoned the Alzheimer Society of Simcoe County, and an interview was arranged. I began my volunteer experience by joining the committee for the Alzheimer’s Walk for Memories held in Midland each year, at that time, during the winter. I later headed up the committee and incorporated skating as an option for the event.

When the Alzheimer Society introduced a pilot program, “Minds in Motion”, to our area I applied to assist as a volunteer in the program. I became involved for 3 years with “Minds in Motion” prior to COVID when the in-person program had to be discontinued. To be able to interact with the clients and their care partners was a truly rewarding experience and provided an environment where we laughed and had fun together. We got to know one another, and meaningful bonds were made. Presently I have a client that I phone on a regular basis to have a social conversation. To be able to hear her life stories is a wonderful privilege.

My volunteer experience with the Alzheimer Society has given my life new meaning and given me a purpose during my retirement. I also benefitted from the programs I participated in, and they were a tremendous help in better understanding the disease and enabling me to offer support and help to my brother and his family during his journey.