Sara Development Volunteer

Sara and passenger having some fun aboard a WestJet flightVolunteer since: February 2017 

Tell us about yourself. What do you do outside of volunteering?
I’m a WestJet cabin crew member, which can be difficult to sum up because the job encompasses so many roles. In a split second it can go from joking around and handing out pretzels to handling a guest’s medical emergency. The details may constantly shift, but ultimately it’s about making people feel safe and comfortable while they travel.

How did you hear about Hope Air?
I first heard about Hope Air from a guest, actually. A mother was travelling with her young daughter, and I happened to be working in the back of the plane near them. We were chatting and the mother mentioned that it was through Hope Air they were heading to a medical appointment.

What made you want to volunteer here?
I loved the connection to what I do every day. But mostly it felt like Hope Air was making a very tangible difference in so many people’s lives, and I wanted to be a part of that.

What do you do in your volunteering role?
I started out on the phones as a Client Care volunteer, confirming medical appointments and flight details, but have since migrated to a more behind-the-scenes role within the development and volunteer programs. I’ve always been really passionate about writing and fundraising, and I love the projects that I’m working on at the moment. But they’re still top secret, so stay tuned!

The newest aspect of my volunteering is my completely self-appointed role of Official Hope Air Bear Photographer (™ me), where I raise awareness of Hope Air by taking photos like these during my travels:

Hope Bear enjoying inflight colouring bookHope Bear getting a little airsickHope Bear: now a pilot

What’s your experience been like so far?
Everyone here has been so welcoming. They’re really like a family, and I like to think of myself as that sort of quirky cousin that stops by from time to time! There are so many details [to the Hope Air work] Sara in WestJet uniformthat hadn’t occurred to me before volunteering in the different departments. I love that everyone is working on things simultaneously, and each of these things is crucial to getting to a client’s flight.

I’m sure I have Hope Air clients on my WestJet flights all the time, but we’d never know unless they told us so. Hope Air’s work is so far-reaching and the organization is so elaborate. I feel fortunate to play even a small role in making these flights happen from the Hope Air office, and in making clients as comfortable as possible from the frontlines.