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Volunteer profile: Heather Cadenhead

National Volunteer Week is April 7- 13, a time to celebrate the contributions of millions of volunteers across Canada who generously donate their time and energy to causes dear to their hearts.
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​Heather Cadenhead

Volunteers’ dedication and commitment are keys to our success in providing outstanding patient experiences for families at BC Children’s Hospital and BC Women’s Hospital + Health Centre.

​Length of volunteering:
​2010 – 2013
Volunteer roles:
​Navigation & Wayfinding, Child Life, Education Support, Junior Auxiliary Committee, Research
Current occupation:

Resident Doctor at UBC specializing in the field of Anesthesia (pediatric anesthesia rotation at BC Children's last summer)


What motivated you to volunteer here?

I was interested in a health care career and was looking for experiences where I would interact with patients, physicians, nurses and other allied health professionals to see if it would be a good fit for me. I had also previously been a patient at BC Children’s and was very keen to give back and create similar positive experiences for future patients.

How would you describe your overall volunteer experience here?

Volunteering at BC Children’s was like being part of a family. To interact with like-minded peers and staff with similar interests outside of an academic environment was important part of my personal growth in university.

What did you enjoy most about volunteering here?

The people. I am still friends with many of my co-volunteers and see them outside work and in our professional capacities six years later. It's great being able to page a friend for a consult at work.

Please share any of your memorable volunteer experiences.  

The most memorable experiences were seeing children light up at the opportunity to play and be a normal kid after being consumed by an illness that isolates them from their community.

Has your volunteer experience at BC Children’s helped or influenced you in your career goals, and if so, how?  

Volunteering influenced my career goals by giving me exposure to all the allied health careers in a hospital setting. You don't necessarily get exposed to speech language pathologists, physical therapists, occupational therapists and social workers in university and getting to know these professionals and what they do helped me to choose a career path.

If you could offer one piece of advice about volunteering to prospective volunteers what would you tell them?

Volunteer in capacities that you enjoy and you will have fulfilling experiences. Be open to new opportunities, be present and enjoy the process.

Learn more about volunteering at BC Children's.

 
 
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