“You are allowed to be both a masterpiece and a work in progress, simultaneously.” – Sophia Bush
The Disabled Independent Gardeners Association (DIGA) is honoured to have a volunteer like Jasmine Leung. She’s volunteered since 2018-19, assisting gardeners and watching their work change and grow over the seasons. Much of Jasmine’s volunteering involves working with DIGA member Maureen DeLandreville, with whom she’s developed a close friendship.
Jasmine began volunteering for the Disability Foundation in her fourth year of high school while searching for ways to gain work experience at the recommendation of her grade 11 teacher. While initially part of the Adaptive Sailing Association of BC (ASABC), she found her real calling with DIGA. What she enjoys the most about her role is being partnered with and working alongside Maureen in the garden every week. Jasmine has come to appreciate Maureen’s patience, “I’m a student and also… I work part-time as well… she’s really considerate of my schedule.” She’s also enjoyed the friends she’s made through volunteering, recalling, “[Maureen] has a lot of friends at the garden as well, so I get to meet them too… She introduces me to them, and it’s like a really great community.”
It’s meeting that community she’s enjoyed the most in her role. Jasmine explains that, “… it was just cool getting to meet different people and like hearing their stories… With the Disability Foundation, there’s just like so many different people with different backgrounds, and I think that’s cool to meet them.” In one instance during her time at ASABC, she met a fellow volunteer who went to the same high school she did. Jasmine recalled, “I thought it was really cool because we didn’t know each other at all, and then after that, I realized that she was… a grade below me, and we both went to Kitsilano Secondary [School} so that was really cool.”
For Jasmine, volunteering is about giving back to the community while building new connections. Jasmine said, “I think it’s really cool to be able to help someone and then just be able to give them that chance to be able to garden.” Jasmine reflected on her friendship with Maureen saying, “Along the way, you’ll get to meet new people, like I’ve developed… a pretty good friendship [with Maureen].”
Jasmine, the Disability Foundation and DIGA genuinely appreciate the time you to lend to gardeners like Maureen. Your willingness to assist and be a companion and friend to those you work with as a volunteer is truly unique. We’re always looking for people to volunteer their time in the DIGA gardens. If you want to help with DIGA or one of our other organizations, , contact Sheryl at firstname.lastname@example.org.