There are so many wonderful volunteer opportunities for youth- and the Calgary Zoo and TELUS Spark have teamed up to make sure that there is one more! For the last six summers the Calgary Zoo has offered the KidzKonnect volunteer program to engages youth from the ages of 14-17 with summer volunteering opportunities. This year, we have partnered with the TELUS Community Foundation and TELUS Spark to deliver a more rounded experience for our young Calgarians. #givewherewelive
Meet Brittany Ashton, 16, one of our youth KidzKonnect volunteers!
Q: Tell us about yourself!
A: I go to St. Francis High School, and I’m interested in Biology- I’m looking to go into Nursing.
Q: How did you find out about the KidzKonnect program?
A: I heard about it at my school. Our YVC (Youth Volunteer Core- a part of Youth Central) sent us an email with a list of volunteering opportunities, and I saw the Calgary Zoo and thought- that sounds fun! I’d liked visiting the zoo myself, most recently for ZOOLIGHTS.
Q: How long have you been a volunteer for KidzKonnect, and what do you do as a volunteer?
A: I just started- I worked a week in June, and now I’m back again. Typically at the Calgary Zoo, your shifts can be from Monday to Friday, or from Thursday to Monday, and they’re full day shift that can range from working with summer camps to being a greeter for the guests. I haven’t worked at TELUS Spark yet, but I hear from other volunteers that it’s really fun as well.
Q: Who do you volunteer with?
A: Most of the KidzKonnect are similar ages to me, and are in high school, but there are a few recent graduates as well. It’s nice because you work in groups of 4-5 people that rotates every week, so I’m making a lot of new friends.
Q: Have you volunteered previously?
A: I volunteered for the Bethany Care Centre for seven months, and I helped out with the flood cleanup in Chinatown last summer.
Q: What do you love about being a volunteer?
A: Making people smile! Being able to help last year after the flood made me feel really useful- volunteering makes you feel good.
Q: What would you like to do here at the zoo in the future?
A: I’d love to work with the animals, and just learn more in general. There’s a lot of stuff going on at the zoo!