CODE’s volunteers lead busy lives… they “make their livings” as academics, writers, artists, business leaders and even broadcast journalists. Thankfully for CODE, they “make their lives” by helping support our important literacy work overseas and right here at home, in Canada.
National Volunteer Week (April 15-21, 2018) is a very special time for CODE because it gives us the opportunity to express our deep gratitude to the many people who help us deliver the power and promise of literacy around the world - every day of the year. Volunteers have been an important part of our success since CODE’s beginnings in 1959 when we started out as a used book donations program.
Today, our generous corps of volunteers put in countless hours sharing their personal expertise so that CODE can deliver its desperately needed and highly valued literacy programs around the world and among Canada’s First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities. The ways in which our volunteers support our work ranges greatly — from leading writing and illustration workshops and teacher training sessions overseas to giving us a helping hand with our special donor mailings and photo archiving at CODE Headquarters, in Ottawa. Our dedicated Board members (former and current) are "on board" too — performing outreach to raise profile and funds for CODE with events like Chris Bredt's Summit for Literacy Kili Climb, and the CODE Read Africa Ball. CODE on Campus’ students “adopt a library” bake sales and CBC’s Shelagh Rogers “giving voice” to CODE’s annual Burt Awards for First Nations, Inuit and Métis Literature are all shining examples of the passion and dedication of CODE’s wonderful volunteers.
The people on “team CODE” come from all walks of life and span across generations but they are all united in their dedication to CODE and the belief in the transformative power of education. Thank you so much for all that you do to help CODE as we work together to rewrite the story for global literacy.
"I volunteer for CODE because I respect what CODE stands for, and its impressive track record of accomplishments and contributions. Of utmost importance for me is that the goal to forge genuinely collaborative partnerships, responsive to community needs and wishes, which build - and build on - local strengths, is taken seriously. Trip after trip my experiences with teachers and writers in Liberia and Tanzania have shown me this is so - and how much of a difference CODE’s efforts make. Good, locally created books where there were no books; teachers confident they can engage students with questions, ideas, learning strategies; students responding to materials worthy of their potential. I volunteer because I learn so much. I volunteer because book by book, classroom by classroom, it helps make things better."
— Dr. Alison Preece, CODE expert-volunteer
"It is a profound joy to volunteer with CODE and to be a small part of the great work they are doing. The CODE Burt Award for First Nations, Inuit and Metis Literature for young people has created a legacy where Indigenous children and young adults see themselves in the story. I am so pleased to have hosted the awards event since its inception. Witnessing young readers meeting authors is nothing short of thrilling! Thank you, CODE, for your amazing leadership in sharing great stories of every kind."
— Shelagh Rogers, CODE Burt Award volunteer
"Volunteering with CODE over many years has provided me unique and enlightening opportunities to share my expertise with and to learn from my African colleagues. My international work is one of the best forms of professional development I can imagine. It keeps me grounded in the realities of the important work teachers do each day in schools around the globe and challenges me to be a teacher educator who truly makes a difference in the lives of teachers and children."
— Dr. Pamela Winsor, CODE expert-volunteer
“I am involved with CODE because of the way its programs are structured. Working with in-country partners helps better understand the needs for each community CODE is engaged with, increases the chance to develop local expertise and builds capacity for the future. The comprehensive readership approach developed by CODE which consists of providing good, relevant and accessible books in addition to teacher training is another reason I support CODE.”
— Jacques Bérubé, Chair, CODE Board of Directors