Each year, members of McMaster’s TMG group volunteer in the community through the TMG Day of Service initiative. This initiative is run by an organizing committee made up of TMG members. Based on survey feedback, this year the committee has partnered with multiple community agencies throughout the Downtown Hamilton area to offer the 6th Annual TMG Day of Service on September 20, 2019.
Highlights for this year’s event include:
- a kickoff with the Office of Community Engagement
- an opportunity to learn about current social barriers in Hamilton through a walking tour of three not-for profit agencies
- lunch (paid by participants) at the Wesley First Start Café; a unique social enterprise
- multiple opportunities to network with other TMG members
- volunteering in small groups at an agency of your choice from a selection of seven partners
- free transportation to and from Downtown Hamilton
We have the opportunity to align and operationalize McMaster’s mission statement by “valuing integrity, quality, inclusiveness and teamwork in everything we do. We inspire critical thinking, personal growth, and a passion for lifelong learning. We serve the social, cultural, and economic needs of our community and our society.”
Walking Tour - Agencies
This year we have partnered with multiple community agencies throughout the Downtown Hamilton area. We will begin our time downtown with a walking tour of the following agencies:
Small Group Volunteering – Agencies
The afternoon will focus on volunteering in small groups at an agency of your choice from a selection of seven partners:
- Boys and Girls Club (preparation for summer camp)
- Eva Rothwell Centre (either sorting clothing in their free clothing room, or cleaning/painting in the building)
- Living Rock (dinner prep and cleanup)
- St. Matthew’s House (stocking shelves at the food bank)
- Threshold School of Building (painting/drywall repairs – need own safety boots)
- Welcome Inn Community Center (New Horizon’s Thrift Store – sorting and organizing clothes and providing customer service support for clients)
- YMCA (painting/cleaning)
In Forward with Integrity, President Deane encourages the University to deepen its commitment and contribution to the community and as members of TMG, it is recognized that we have a tremendous opportunity as leaders to become actively involved, serving as a model of university citizenship by supporting & engaging with our local community.
In 2013, with our efforts to promote the spirit of volunteerism in partnership with various employees and champion the experience of our employee community through proactive engagement, a sub-committee of the TMG Committee recommended a TMG Day of Service initiative. The recommendation was in response to an interest shown by TMG employees to strengthen the sense of community and encourage collaboration amongst colleagues. This initiative was seen to be of great value to the University.
Specifically, the purpose of the TMG Day of Service was to:
- Deepen our individual and collective understanding of the complex issues facing the Hamilton community
- Assist the efforts of community agencies to improve the quality and conditions of their clients lives
- Identify and discuss shared management challenges faced by community and university leaders
- Strengthen a service-oriented and collaborative culture amongst TMG employees
- Reflect on our service learning and identify how this knowledge will inform our work as university leaders
- Celebrate and share our experience from this day with the entire community during a TMG Forum
A TMG Day of Service proposal was presented to the President and Vice-Presidents and the initiative was fully endorsed and supported. Subsequently, a Working Group was established by the Sub-Committee to launch this initiative.
2013 – In November 2013, over 80 TMG members participated in the pilot. Volunteers provided a day of service to over 8 community agencies and the initiative was a tremendous success. Groups of up to 12 people were led by a volunteer Team Lead acting as a group facilitator to ensure the accomplishment of learning objectives and training on community service-learning best practices. The Student Success Centre was a partner in the organization of this day due to their past experience with community agencies.
After the successful pilot in late 2013, there was a strong call from participants to continue the positive experience for the TMG population. The President and Vice-Presidents recognized the impact on the TMG community and endorsed the continuation of an annual day devoted to community service for TMG members.
2014 – the TMG sub-committee recommended that due to the timing of the upcoming launches of Mosaic modules, and feedback received from participants, that the initiative would be postponed in 2014 and take place during Canada’s National Volunteer Week in April, 2015.
2015 – the TMG sub-committee organized the TMG Day of Service which occurred on April 16th and over 8 placement agencies were engaged providing over 70 TMG employees the opportunity to volunteer their services. The initiative resulted in yet another successful community based opportunity for our TMG Community.
2016 – TMG Day of Service occurred in September 2016 again led by a working committee and included over 50 TMG participants serving a number of placement centers throughout the Hamilton Community.
2017 – the TMG Day of Service occurred on September 2017, which was coordinated by a working committee. Approximately 60 TMG participants served the McQuesten Community at McQuesten Urban Farm. This new location provided an opportunity for all participants to volunteer in one place, which allowed for a greater connection among TMG members and a larger impact for an area of Hamilton with a strong need for support.
2018 – feedback from the 2017 Day of Service was overwhelmingly positive so we returned to McQuesten Farm in May 2018!