Canada’s Governor General encouraged youth to become more active in volunteering during a speech yesterday at the tail end of a three-day official visit to B.C.
“As we are always reinventing government,” said Gov. Gen. David Johnston. “We also reinvent the volunteering sector.”
His speech to the Vancouver Club, held at the Ismaili Centre in Burnaby, focused on 10 challenges to improve to volunteerism among youth and families.
The country, Johnston explained, needs to bridge the age gap in volunteering to engage the younger population.
“Young volunteers must be given not just a set of duties, but a set of opportunities.”
People, he said, can volunteer as families and not just individually, increasing unity and engagement of youth.
Johnston also emphasized a need to honour all Canadian volunteers and acknowledge their committed work, especially work of the “unsung” people.
“Sixty-eight per cent of Canadians help by helping a stranger,” said Johnston. “All deeds show us to be such a caring nation.”
Earlier yesterday, Johnston and his wife, Sharon, visited Vancouver’s city hall and met with Mayor Gregor Robertson and his wife Amy.
The Governor General spoke to officials about the city’s programs for youth and families and Vancouver’s Greenest City initiative.