Volunteering for 50 years

Olive Martin thought she was just giving her mother a ride to a fundraising meeting to help a Bonnyville hospital. Instead, it launched a journey of volunteering that has spanned a whopping 50 years.

 Now 80, Olive says 50 years of giving has brought her great joy.

“I’ve always felt that you should give back if you can. I just feel that way,” says Olive. “It’s fun and it’s nice to talk to people. Hopefully we are making a difference.”

Even as a busy mother of four, Olive found time to lend a hand. Over the past five decades, she’s helped the Royal Canadian Legion, United Church, Red Hats, Brownies and Guides. She also served as the first president of the Bonnyville Health Centre Auxiliary.

Currently, Olive is the chair of the Bonnyville Health Centre Gift Shop. In this role, she has helped raise money for different departments within the centre, including a recent piece of equipment valued at more than $5,000 for the orthopedic department.

To mark her decades of dedication, the Bonnyville Health Centre Auxiliary group organized a secret celebration where she was recognized by the Town of Bonnyville, the Alberta Healthcare Auxiliaries Association and the Bonnyville Health Centre Auxiliary.

“I was shocked about being honoured. I just like to help. That’s all.”

Olive plans to continue helping as long as she can and encourages others to volunteer.

“Just come. It’s fun.”

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