NEWS RELEASE Sept. 1, 2009
PENTICTON, BRITISH COLUMBIA - The South Okanagan Similkameen Volunteer Centre is
announcing its fall program and membership. The Volunteer Centre promotes and encourages more
people to volunteer in their communities. The intention is to increase the pool of volunteers available
to help deliver important and fundamental community services. Along with promoting specific
volunteer opportunities to the public, the Volunteer Centre is hosting several developmental
workshops for non profit organizations in the coming year.
Carol Dixon, Director of Volunteer Resources at Providence Health Care will be conducting the first
workshop on Targeted Recruitment, Oct. 14, 2009 at the United Church Main Hall, 696 Main Street,
Penticton. Ms. Dixon travels throughout the province speaking on volunteer related topics. The
second workshop scheduled for Nov. 18 is on Best Practices for Volunteer Involvement and is free to
members of the Volunteer Centre. These workshops, open to employees & volunteers of non profit
organizations, will help create and establish standards for Volunteer Centre members that volunteers
can count on.
Membership in the Volunteer Centre provides numerous cost saving and quality benefits for non
profits. Benefits include listing their volunteer opportunities on a central database of the Centre which
the Volunteer Centre in turn promotes; free access to a resource library and discounts on educational
speakers, special promotions and booths at Volunteer Fair planned for National Volunteer Week in
161,000 not-for-profits with revenues of $112 billion make Canada’s volunteer sector ” the second
largest volunteer sector in the world.”
Non-profits account for 6.8 % of the GDP compared to Auto manufacturers who contribute 2.1 %.
Non-profits represent less than 1% of all organizations but account for 33% of all revenues.
Non-profits employ over 2 million and draw on 2 billion volunteer hours, the equivalent of 1 million full-
5 million Canadians volunteer over 1 billion hours of service each year. The economic value of this
volunteer work is estimated at $13.2 billion.
In British Columbia:
1.5 million volunteers contribute 114 million hours a year; the equivalent to 60,000 full-time jobs.
This volunteer force, combined with paid staff, work in more than 20,000 BC non-profits making the
volunteer sector one of the largest social and economic drivers in the province, generating $11 billion in
In the South Okanagan Similkameen:
Volunteers contribute over 10 million dollars annually to the local economy.
Volunteers deliver programs to better the lives of people through over 500 non profits including local
Community Centres, Destination Osoyoos, The South Okanagan Seniors Wellness Society, Penticton
& District Community Arts Council, Lifeline, and the Penticton Branch of the BC Schizophrenia Society.
Volunteers make community events possible such as the Peach Festival, the International Children’s
Festival, Pacific Northwest Elvis Festival, the Pentastic Jazz Festival and many others.
Volunteer Centers are particularly important to communities with increasing numbers of new residents
as they assist in helping newcomers feel connected by using their skills to help others. If you are
interested in signing up as a Volunteer, becoming a non profit Member, or Sponsoring a Volunteer
Centre initiative e-mail the Centre at email@example.com, or visit the webpage at