Over 400 incredible volunteers form the backbone of Canuck Place Children’s Hospice. Generous, kind, and thoughtful, they embody the spirit of compassion and care that defines Canuck Place.

Perhaps nobody is as familiar with this spirit as Merle Rector. Merle has been a volunteer since Canuck Place opened its doors in 1995. She has always stepped into to help support Canuck Place children and families with a smile on her face.

To acknowledge and celebrate 25 years of volunteering, we asked Merle to fill in the blank: Canuck Place is: _____________.

We’re pleased to share Merle’s reflections on what Canuck Place is:

Canuck Place is: a home of loving hearts and many helping hands

Canuck Place is:  a home-like environment for children and their families in their time of need

Canuck Place is: having listening ears and open eyes of support bringing light to adversities

Canuck Place is: nurturing families in house as well as at festivals in the garden

Canuck Place is: a home of great courage

Canuck Place is: living in the moment

Canuck Place is: sitting at the kitchen table listening to parents and carers

Canuck Place is: taking the outside world into Glen Brae and Dave Lede House

Canuck Place is: holding a newborn baby to give the parent or nurse a welcome break

Canuck Place is: playing the ukulele or piano and singing to bring joy

Canuck Place is: embracing life to the fullest

Canuck Place is: enjoying being with a child in the snoezelen room

Canuck Place is: connecting with families at a summer BBQ in the garden

Canuck Place is: sharing time with children in the art room/ crafts, painting and dressing up too!

Canuck Place is: assisting the teacher with any task given me

Canuck Place is: walking alongside children, experiencing the joy of a simple smile or calming demeanour

Canuck Place is: appreciating nature, walking through the gardens at both hospices

Canuck Place is: providing support to the children, nurses and counsellors, away from the Hospices at various camps