Babe Bailey is a lively and cheerful woman; when you talk to her, you instantly feel welcomed by her. She and her friends, who volunteer as a group from the Vancouver Shaughnessy Lions Club, have been volunteering for the Meals on Wheels program for more than fifteen years. She regularly works five days a week but still sets time aside during her busy week to help with Meals on Wheels.
Babe (pictured on the left, with a Meals on Wheels client and another Vancouver Shaughnessy Lions Club volunteer) finds her Meals on Wheels volunteer experience is quite different from other volunteer opportunities. She appreciates the direct contact and communication with the meal recipient each time she delivers meals and is very content when she sees the smiling faces of the elderly. Babe’s strongest motivation for volunteering with Meals on Wheels is the meaningful contact and connection she is able to establish with the seniors she visits. Over the past few years, Babe and her friends from the Lions Club have established a deep affection with the elderly they serve.
There is one very special moment that Babe will always remember. She often delivered to a very quiet lady who wasn’t overly friendly; Babe was always struck by her stoic nature. Her face rarely betrayed any emotion. But one day, when Babe was delivering a meal to her, she not only congratulated Babe on her birthday but also secretly made a birthday cake for her. Babe was overjoyed by this and realized that though this client might have difficulty expressing her love for others, all the emotions were hidden in her heart.
Babe also distinctly remembers the sadness when she hears of a long-time recipient’s death. She always feels sad when she hears of this, because she cares for each of her Meals on Wheels recipients so much. When asked if she would continue to volunteer with Meals on Wheels after the fifteen years of service, she confidently replied she would. “I hope I will be able to serve more elderly. It’s an extraordinary life experience that will bring my life abundance. I will always stick to it!”