Winter darkness inspired Vancouver newcomer Lakshmi Reddy to volunteer during the 2017 Festival of Lights — and that experience inspired her to seek a continuing role. Now she typically spends one or more days a week at the VanDusen, as volunteer engagement assistant to Heidi Jakop, Director of Volunteer Engagement.
“One major activity is recruitment,” she says, “so, for example, I post available positions on sites like Charity Village and Go Volunteer.” Her work has a growing visual component. It’s something this amateur photographer and social-media enthusiast really enjoys, for both the content and the diversity of the projects. “I’ve done a marketing video of Heidi introducing our volunteer program to viewers, and an online tutorial to help volunteers use our new volunteer platform,” she says, by way of illustration.
You’d expect someone with a post-grad degree in environmental engineering to feel right at home at the VanDusen — and you’d be correct. “I love being a volunteer here,” she says. “I love the Garden itself, with its values of conservation, community and stewardship. And I’m inspired by other volunteers — their knowledge and dedication, and the way long-time volunteers are still so excited about what they do.”
Writer, Penny Williams