Volunteer Week 2021 - Shelly Howe

April 18-24, 2021 is National Volunteer Week. Volunteers are the very foundation of the parks and recreation industry. We are embracing this year’s theme - “The Value of One, The Power of Many” – by using our Blog and social media to celebrate amazing volunteers like Shelly Howe! 

Shelly Howe is a volunteer with the Canadian Red Cross and lives in the city of Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan. She has been a volunteer with the Red Cross since 2003. She is a Swimming & Water Safety Master Instructor Trainer, SWS MIT Recert conductor, Psychological First Aid Instructor Trainer, and has been a committee member for the Saskatchewan and Manitoba Aquatics Conference for the past seven years.  

Shelly has taught “approximately 60 different courses, training more than 400 candidates,” according to Gail Botten, an Advisor, Program Development for Prevention & Safety, at the Canadian Red Cross. “Her expertise is greatly appreciated in the swimming and water safety program,” Gail said. “Her commitment to excellence has made our Water Safety Leadership programs the highest quality.” 

Shelly is a member of the Canadian Red Cross’ Swimming and Water Safety Ambassador group. An active leader in her community, she is well known in the aquatics industry nationally. She spends countless volunteer hours sharing her experience, knowledge and skills delivering presentations, and networking with the Canadian Red Cross’ Training Partners as a representative at conferences.    

When asked why she enjoys volunteering with the Canadian Red Cross, Shelly gave two reasons. “I believe in the Mission of helping vulnerable people through the 7 Fundamental Principles, and the people I meet through volunteering consistently reaffirm my passion for the work that the Red Cross does.” Gail agreed, saying “Shelly’s commitment to the Canadian Red Cross and its values and principles are evident in all the volunteer work she does with us.” 

Navigating the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic have been difficult for many volunteers like Shelly. The biggest challenge, Shelly said, was “sorely missing my amazing volunteer colleagues, the energetic staff and enthusiastic course participants.” However, the pandemic has presented some new opportunities as well. “Working with others to produce virtual conferences and courses provided meaningful engagement. It has been different, and at times, frustrating, but always worth it. I became a volunteer with the Red Cross to help others...but the truth is, I receive so much more that I could ever give.” 

The Canadian Red Cross – Saskatchewan Branch receives funding from Sask Lotteries. Learn more about how you can get involved with the Canadian Red Cross in Saskatchewan at https://www.redcross.ca/in-your-community/saskatchewan.