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Connecting with Community

When Adam Travis and his daughter Peyton are volunteering for Matthew’s House, it’s all about being connected in their community and using their gifts with purpose.

“God has given me time and abilities,” Adam says. “I want to use those effectively and efficiently and I know that places like Matthew’s House need volunteers, especially at events.”

Matthew’s House supports families by providing quality care to children who live with complex care needs so that their parents can get the rest they need. Community events are an opportunity to raise funds and awareness about this resource for families. Volunteers make a big difference.

“Our volunteers are amazing at creating awareness,” says Laura Ullock, resource development assistant for Matthew’s House. “Without them we would not be able to have as many fundraising opportunities throughout the year.”

Adam wanted to connect more with his community and set himself a goal to get involved somewhere once a month. He also wanted to do something together with his daughter. An internet search led him to Matthew’s House and he connected with Laura to see if he and Peyton could help. It turned out to be a good match.

“Adam and Peyton helped out with set up at the Trees of Hope fundraiser at Sevenoaks,” Laura remembers. “Now they volunteer at almost every event we hold.”

For Adam and Peyton, volunteering together is a natural outflow of their relationship. Peyton is a grade 8 student at Chief Dan George Middle School where Adam works as an Educational Assistant and volunteers as a rugby coach. Working with children who live with special needs means that Adam is aware of the need for respite. Some of the children who visit Matthew’s House also attend Chief Dan, so Peyton has a chance to see these children in her own context. She knows how important it is for her to be involved in raising awareness about what Matthew’s House has to offer.

“My favourite part of volunteering with Matthew’s House is seeing how it really helps other people. It’s cool to know that.” – Peyton, volunteer

Volunteering together has also given Adam and Peyton an appreciation for each other. Peyton says her dad is the kind of guy who gives without hesitation.

“He makes time for everyone,” she says. “He coaches rugby at my school, we volunteer together and he has a job but he always finds the time if someone has a need.”

Adam is also proud of his daughter. Volunteering together is a way for him to teach her that she has been blessed and out of that blessing she can give back. It is a lesson she has learned well.

“I am proud of Peyton because she doesn’t let anything stop her. She’s willing to step out of her comfort zone and even if it’s hard she does it anyway, without complaint, because she knows it’s the right thing to do.”

And for those who might be on the fence about taking the time to volunteer, Adam has some advice.

“If you feel like you don’t fit in or want to find some place to connect, take the time to volunteer,” he says. “You’ll feel more connected than you ever have.”

Peyton agrees, adding that the benefits are numerous.

“Volunteering has given me more understanding and it makes me want to do more,” she says. “Volunteering benefits everyone, me included.”

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