Let’s celebrate them.

For this year’s National Volunteer Week, we would like to acknowledge the unique and precious support provided by our volunteers. Each gesture they generously make has a decisive impact on our mission and helps us focus our efforts on what counts most: supporting families in their fight against ALS all across the province and funding research.All of our volunteers, which include Ambassadors, participants, fund-raisers or professionals willing to share their skills with us, all our volunteers give our community hope for a future without ALS. From April 18 to 24, we will shine the light on these exceptional people who inspire us to go beyond our limits everyday. We hope their stories will inspire you to get involved to help further our mission!

Louise Boivin

Volunteer at the support group in Ville Lorraine

“ Since 2015, I have made it my mission to take care of participants at the support group for people living with ALS and their caregivers in Ville Lorraine. For some, I became a caregiver, which allowed me to better understand the impact and needs behind ALS. I make sure to hold the hands of those who are in a state of shock and more vulnerable. I became close with many people living with the disease and caregivers. I catch up with them outside of the groups and when they don’t feel well, I make sure to stop by and visit them. This volunteer experience at the support group in Lorraine also allows me to access to the root and heart of life and see its true colors. Everything you hold on to in life takes another dimension when you let yourself look at it with your heart. Life is everywhere, even through illness. ”

The Bastiens

Volunteers at the Ride to Fight ALS and the Walk to End ALS in Montreal

“Giving back to the community gave our family the opportunity to gather in a positive environment to help people living with ALS. We also realized that we weren’t the only ones who went through the challenges related to the disease and who ultimately had to say goodbye to a loved one. We were also able to support each other and support others in such a rewarding way. The Ride to Fight ALS and the Walk to End ALS of Montreal contributed to maintaining and strengthening the lasting ties that unite us and to keeping Mario’s legacy alive. For us, volunteering is a positive addition to our family’s story that brings us an unexpected and non-measurable sense of accomplishment.”

Mylène Duchesneau

Volunteer graphic designer

“When I first started volunteering, it was a way of letting my father know that I could do something to move the cause forward and a way of joining his fight against ALS, which I carried on after he passed away in 2013. I still fight ALS in his memory today, but I also met a great team that knows how to acknowledge their volunteer’s involvement. I work on stimulating projects and get the feeling that I’m giving back, while being an example for my children. I hope that my contribution will make a difference so that, someday, no one has to deal with this terrible disease. Honestly, I don’t know if families realize how much is done by each volunteer who works in their office late at night after putting the kids to bed. The Society, however, does recognize it. Thank you to the Society, it gives me the strength to keep going, even when my head is spinning!”

France Piotte

Administrative support volunteer

“I decided to get involved with the Society shortly after one of my colleagues was living with ALS. While he was living with the disease, I was there by his side a few hours every week for over a year. Even though I theorically knew what the disease was, this direct contact made me realize the daily challenges encountered by people living with ALS and their families. I think that, by helping others, you can also help yourself. Through my involvement, I get to feel useful and to bring happiness to others. I now realize what resilience truly means and how lucky I am to be healthy.”

Prochat Salas

Volunteer a the Society’s ALS clinic at the CHUM

“When my beloved mother, Mrs Mandan Alavi, was diagnosed with ALS, I promised myself that I would get involved with the ALS Society of Quebec. Volunteering for the ALS Society of Quebec at the CHUM’s ALS Clinic brings me so much more than what I hoped for. Not only do I get to defend a cause that is close to my heart, I also get to meet incredible people. It also allows me to be in sync with my own values and principles. For me, it’s as simple as listening to the needs of people living with ALS and their caregivers.”

Gary Donovan

Volunteer at Montreal’s Walk to End ALS

“For me, volunteering is a time to reflect and give back and I am always thanked and appreciated. The ALS Society of Quebec helped my mother and in return I offer my help and time. I see families with a loved one touched by ALS at the Walk and I think back. Seeing families come together and support each other makes me feel good and if I can help then I am happy. I hope that families going through these tough times see that there is help out there and that they are not alone. If for one day I can make someone’s day a little more brighter then I have done right and that is what makes volunteerism rewarding.”

Norman MacIsaac

Ambassador and member of the Society’s Board of Directors, living with ALS

“After my diagnosis, the Society helped me find my way and deal with the disease. It’s a place where people can get together and combine their strengths in the battle against ALS. Agreeing to be an ambassador is a very life affirming action and a way of contributing to the fight for future generations who will be touched by the disease. In the meantime, it does people with ALS a lot of good to talk about it with others. When you have ALS, the last thing you should do is isolate yourself. It’s crucial that we educate the public about the disease in order to increase support for programs and services as well as research. It’s the only way to defeat ALS once and for all.”

Steve Rioux and Jean-François Richard

Organizers of the Premier Marathon à vie pour Yvan Labillois  fundraising event

“When our friend and former employee, Yvan, asked us to step up to the plate for the cause, that’s when we decided to raise money for ALS Quebec by running our first marathon. He told us that we couldn’t do much to help him, but that we’d be doing a lot for future people living with ALS. Yvan’s bravery was an inspiration to us all! We really admire everything the Society does to support people living with ALS, including helping Yvan to adapt his car so he could keep driving for a few months longer. We’re also proud that part of our donations goes toward financing research and new treatments for ALS.”

Denise St-Pierre

Ride to Fight ALS participant, Walk to End ALS’ coordinator in Saitn-Hyacinthe and recipient of the Chantal Lanthier volunteer award for her involvement in Team ALS.

“Participating in the Society’s events allowed me to meet many people who made a strong impression on me, including Chantal Lanthier. After reading her book, Parce que parfois, la pluie doit tomber, I felt an urgent need to live life to the fullest, but even more than that, to help. In 2014, I took the Ice Bucket Challenge, like so many others, but once it was over, I promised myself I’d do more. Since 2015, the team at Centre ADN has been proudly combining the ADN challenge with the Saint‑Hyacinthe Walk for ALS, and organizing a yoga-for-ALS fundraiser. Even though we might feel helpless against a disease like ALS, as citizens we have the power to band together to eliminate it once and for all. Every little bit counts!”

Monica Hidalgo

Administrative support volunteer

“After losing my mother to ALS, not only did I want to give back to the ALS community, I also wanted to keep in touch and get involved to make sure I stayed up to date on the latest developments in research and the disease. I enjoy spending time with the people at the Society, I enjoy helping in any way that I can and doing my part to support the cause. It makes me feel useful. The work done by the volunteers is not only important, it’s indispensable, and everyone should get involved in solidarity with the families who are living with this challenge.”

Dominique Miron

Programs and services volunteer

“I lost many people to ALS, including my best friend Mark. As soon as he got diagnosed, it was important for me to do something. In addition to getting involved with the Walks for ALS, I also help maintain contact between the Society and people touched by ALS, including making calls to let them know about the next activities near them. Whenever I call people living with ALS to let them know there’s an upcoming event in which they could take attend and when I hear joy in their voices, it fills my heart with joy. It’s important that everyone touched by ALS knows that the ALS Society of Quebec is there for them, and knowing that I can help in my own way makes me really happy.”

Thérèse Carignan

Trois-Rivières Walk for ALS coordinator

“While taking care of my sister, who has ALS, I also found out that one of my uncles died from the disease and that, oddly enough, there were several cases of ALS in the Mauricie region. Thanks to the Society, my sister was able to get equipment loans and support throughout her eighteen-month battle. After seeing what she went through, I vowed to raise money to make sure that other people would be helped by the many services offered by the Society. Walking together is a great way to rally people behind the cause and to meet kind, brave souls who are filled with hope. It’s the perfect opportunity to show them our support and to talk to other peopel who are going through, or who’ve been through, the same situation. At the same time, since part of the money raised goes to research, we can hope that there will one day be a treatment or a cure for this terrible disease.”

Do these stories inspire you to help us fight ALS?


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