CAB Rediker Celebrates its Volunteers

Cab Rediker 1- aprSTANSTEAD: The room was filled with the air of festivity and camaraderie as the staff of CAB Rediker Center in Stanstead greeted their honored guests who included Deputy Jean Rousseau, Deputy Pierre Reid’s attaché Nicole Renaldi and local dignitaries and, of course, the volunteers who help the Center continue to be able to offer such valuable services within the community and surrounding region. The occasion for celebration was Volunteer Week which is a week set aside each year to honour the people who put their personal time and efforts into making the lives of not only seniors, but so many others a lot easier and definitely a whole lot happier. It is a win-win situation for both volunteers and the person receiving the service!

“Every volunteer has followed their own unique path and brings something special to our group. Whether you are involved as an animator, through accompaniment services, meals-on-wheels, mentoring or other aspects of our programs, you are all making an important contribution to the well-being of our community,” noted Director Mylène Labonté.

place-settingGuest speaker was SQ Sergeant Patrice Grégoire, more commonly referred to by the younger generation as ‘Patrice La Police’. In his job as Special Communication Officer for the Sûreté du Québec, he has made great strides in expanding and updating communications among people of all ages. He meets with young people of all ages, making a conscious effort to gear his information to the group he is addressing. He mentioned that his goal with younger children was to establish a good connection with them so that they would not be afraid to approach a policeman. With groups of teens, he gives more involved information on safety, on drugs and the hazard/consequences of taking drugs. He also gave a summary of the safety programs that he discusses when meeting with women and groups of seniors.

Sgt. Grégoire expressed the importance of the program PAIR which allows seniors living alone to have someone call them once, twice or even three times a day, if preferred, to check in on them. This service is free of charge and gives the person an additional sense of security to know that someone is looking in on them. While there are companies that offer alert bracelets and necklaces, the PAIR program goes one step farther. If no one slogan-1answers, subsequent calls are made and if still no answer, officials are sent to the home in person. There are times when situations happen so quickly, one may not be able to hit an alert button. The program PAIR is not meant to replace the other security products but to offer a second level of security to the individual.

He also spoke about calls to 911 and how these issues are processed. If the person at the other end of the line stops talking, it is possible to track their location if they are using a land-line but if they are calling from a cell phone, the process becomes more difficult and lengthy, in finding the exact location the call came from. He did want everyone to know that even if a cell phone is generally unusable, it is still possible to connect with emergency services by dialing 9-11 or *4141 (phone must be charged however). Even being as close to the U.S. 1.volunteer luncheonborder as the Stanstead region is, Sgt. Grégoire assured everyone that if the 9-11 service on the American side receives the call instead, the message would be transferred to its proper destination.

One honored guest noted that gratitude and appreciation should also be given to those people who step up during distressing times like those we hear about on the news. While these men and women may not always be volunteers, it is their heart, the spirit that drives them to want to help others that makes our struggles that much easier to bear. The work of firemen, policemen, 1st responders, nurses, doctors is not always that easy but they are the first to step up just the same.