SPARK a community connection
“Spark, a service of the Canadian Community Economic Development Network, matches non-profit community organizations in Winnipeg with volunteers who have specific skills or are experts in their fields, and may be seeking to somehow make a difference in their community,” explains Geoff Ripat, Spark Program Manager.
Thus begins a recent article by Third Quarter profiling the Winnipeg-based Spark. In interviews with Geoff and Spark Recruitment Coordinators Katie Schewe and Lindsey McBain, Third Quarter highlights Spark’s commitment to community. “[We] put our focus into matching the needs of the organization with the best skills-suited volunteer,” explains Lindsey. As Katie also points out, this also helps “[o]ur volunteers get a stronger connection to the good that is happening in our community, knowing they are helping to build a stronger Winnipeg.”
As an example of the kind of matching that Spark does, Geoff explains that “One of our mentor matches includes a new-to-the-position executive director whose association is going through a great growth expansion. Needing someone as a sounding board and guide, we have arranged for this person to have monthly meetings with a retired executive director who can bring some perspective to the situation[…]Sometimes the work is project-based. One of our clients wants to expand their community garden and we are working to help them find a landscape architect.”
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Third Quarter is a matching service helping Canadians in “the third quarter of their lives” to connect with businesses that are seeking experienced workers.