You Are Here: Home > About Arthritis > Arthritis in the News > Celebrating our volunteers: recognizing inspirational dedication

Celebrating our volunteers: recognizing inspirational dedication

Announcing the 2024 recipients of the Mary Pack Volunteer Award 

As we celebrate National Volunteer Week, we honour the profound impact each of our volunteers has on Arthritis Society Canada and our work to support the arthritis community across Canada. Whether it's through giving their time, lending their voice to raise awareness, or offering support to those affected by arthritis, each volunteer is making a real difference in the lives of countless individuals. Their efforts – past and present – are vital to our progress and play an integral part in our achievements. 

“Every day, I'm deeply grateful for our amazing volunteers who push our organization forward with courage and determination. Their unwavering commitment truly makes a difference in the lives of many individuals living with arthritis. From advocacy to research, innovation to helpline support, and even lending a hand around the office - their contributions are invaluable,” says president and CEO Trish Barbato.  

Our volunteers are the backbone of our organization, representing the same spirit of dedication and compassion that drove our founders, Mary Pack and Dr. Wallace Graham, to begin our mission over 75 years ago. Just as they envisioned a world free from the pain of arthritis and set out to end this disease, we continue to build on their legacy, striving to make their vision a reality. Together, moment by moment, we are fighting the fire of arthritis with research, advocacy, innovation, information and support. 

In honour of National Volunteer Week, Arthritis Society Canada is proud to announce the recipients of the Mary Pack Volunteer Awards. Named after our founder, these awards recognize and celebrate the exemplary commitment of our outstanding volunteers and the contributions they make to Arthritis Society Canada and the arthritis community. 

This year’s recipients of the Mary Pack Volunteer Award are:   

  • Eloise Beaupré (Quebec), a longtime camp counsellor and supporter who passionately shares her experience living with arthritis with our Quebec campers, proving there is so much more to them than their arthritis. 
  • Terri Betts (British Columbia), an advocacy volunteer who willingly shares their expertise as a hospital pharmacist through providing input on our submissions towards the legislative review of the Cannabis Act and actively participates in other advocacy initiatives. 
  • Walter Bradley (Ontario), an administrative volunteer who does everything from packing backpacks to navigating Arthritis Talks data to supporting our donor services team – all with warm energy, enthusiasm and kindness. 
  • Catherine Hofstetter (Ontario), a longtime volunteer who dedicates her time in many areas of our organization. She is always willing to share her lived arthritis experience and perspective with the goal of making a transformative difference for people living with arthritis. 
  • Kayla Jenkins (Ontario), an advocacy volunteer who participated in our Ontario MPP Lobby Day, openly and graciously sharing the challenges of living with arthritis. 
  • Kaajal Khangura (British Columbia), whose multifaceted contributions supported us in many ways. Kaajal recruited volunteers and sold raffle tickets for the Drishti Gala that raised funds for our organization. She also created, reviewed and expanded our volunteer resources and has boldly shared her story to raise awareness of arthritis, particularly in the South Asian community. 
  • Suzanne Lemieux (Quebec), an Aide EntrAide volunteer, who creates a safe space where a community of peers can share their experience and have open and honest discussions about their lives with arthritis. 
  • Julia McNally (Quebec), whose contributions go beyond being an advocacy volunteer. She also played a critical role in our Yoga for Arthritis video series and shared her perspective in a Benefits Canada article on group benefits plans for people with chronic diseases. 
  • Andrea Weagle (Nova Scotia), has had an immense impact on the childhood arthritis community in Atlantic Canada. Andrea is a nurse at IWK Health in Halifax and shares her rheumatology experience as one of our veteran nurses at Camp JoinTogether. She is also the most enthusiastic advocate and greatest promoter of our camp program. 
  • Jayde Wickett (Manitoba), has volunteered at almost every one of our Manitoba camps as a camp counsellor. Jayde embodies the spirit of camp and is patient, kind, caring and fun – a true role model for campers. Outside of camp, Jayde actively volunteers year-round with Club Sunrise. 

The recipients were nominated by our community for going above and beyond during this past year, working alongside us to positively impact the lives of people affected by arthritis.  

“On behalf of all of us here at Arthritis Society Canada, I’m thrilled to congratulate the Mary Pack Volunteer Award winners,” says Trish. “I offer my heartfelt thank you to all of our volunteers for making a difference in the lives of the six million people in Canada living with arthritis.” 

We celebrate each of our volunteers – past and present. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to you for your unwavering dedication and passion. Together, we will continue to seize every moment and work towards building a brighter, pain-free future for individuals living with arthritis.  

Make a difference. Volunteer today!

Back to News