Student volunteer has enjoyed Afton Park so much she decided to do her placement there

Brittaney Conely says volunteering or doing a placement in LTC is ‘a good way to be a positive influence others and a new way to learn new things’
4/12/2019  - Deron Hamel
Volunteer Brittaney Conely is pictured here with Afton Park resident John Cline.  

Brittaney Conely started volunteering at Afton Park Place in September, and she has enjoyed the experience so much the Lambton College recreational therapy student has decided to also do her field placement at the Sarnia long-term care community.

Brittaney decided to volunteer in the life enrichment department at Afton Park Place because she wanted experience working with older adults living in long-term care.

As a volunteer, Brittaney has helped the life enrichment team with programming, given residents manicures and provided one-to-one visits.

Brittaney says her favourite aspect of volunteering at Afton Park Place is making residents laugh.

“As simple and as it is, seeing the residents smile and laugh shows me that they are having a great time and that I have succeeded in doing my job, not only as a volunteer and as someone who is becoming recreation therapist, (but also) in creating a enriched and happy environment where the residents can be themselves,” she tells S&R Today.

Her volunteering experience has been so rewarding that In January Brittaney decided to do her required course field placement at Afton Park Place.

“Since being on placement I have learned so much about running programs, greeting and having an enriched environment for the residents,” she says.

“I’m so happy to grow and learn. I have not only learned how to be creative with program ideas but to also be creative with coming up with ideas on the spot. I have learned how to create fun games and activities that are in the interest of what residents enjoy.”

Asked what she would tell people who were considering a volunteer opportunity in a long-term care community, Brittaney says she would urge them to do so because volunteering is a way to give back to the community and to create happiness in the lives of others.

“Whether you are volunteering or doing an educational field placement or co-op for school, it does open your eye and change your perspective on life and how you view life in a very good way,” she says. “This is also a good way to be a positive influence others and a new way to learn new things.”

April 7-13 is National Volunteer Week 2019. The week is marked by events nationwide that celebrate volunteers and all they do to enrich the lives of others. This year marks the 78th National Volunteer Week.

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