Clockwise from top left: Volunteers Ryan Tandiama, Jim McGrail, Anne McLaughlin, Corinne Theodore

During National Volunteer Week, we are honouring the many volunteers and auxiliary members who contribute their expertise and abilities to enhance health care across the region.

Here are the stories of four volunteers whose acts of kindness, empathy and compassion have made a positive impact on the lives of people we care for, visitors, staff and medical staff.

Pictured above, clockwise from top left: Volunteers Ryan Tandiama, Jim McGrail, Anne McLaughlin, Corinne Theodore

Corinne Theodore, Langley Memorial Hospital Auxiliary

Approximately six years ago, Corinne Theodore became a valued member of the Langley Memorial Hospital (LMH) Auxiliary team. Her journey began when a friend recommended to her that she explore volunteering at the Langley Memorial Hospital Auxiliary’s offsite thrift store, Penny Pinchers. Motivated by her positive experiences giving birth to both of her children at Langley Memorial Hospital, Corinne sought to give back to her local hospital and the Langley community. 

Currently, Corinne generously donates her time to the Langley Memorial Hospital Auxiliary’s onsite gift shop. Her adept sales skills and extensive product knowledge are invaluable assets. Beyond her customer service duties, she collaborates with local vendors and suppliers to ensure the gift shop remains well-stocked. 

One of Corinne’s greatest joys in volunteering is the opportunity to meet and interact with a diverse array of people. Regardless of the health challenges they may be facing, Corinne takes pride in brightening people’s days. Her warm smile and genuine care create a positive atmosphere within the hospital. 

“Corrine has made a dramatic contribution to the Langley Memorial Hospital Gift Shop, due to her esthetic as a buyer and her natural sales abilities. Her efforts have attracted so many new shoppers into the gift shop and her positive energy and love of shopping are contagious to all in her presence. We feel blessed and grateful for her hard work, her friendship and her desire to make a difference in her community,” says Shannen Kealy, coordinator, Volunteer Resources at Langley Memorial Hospital.

For those considering volunteering, Corinne emphasizes the chance to forge new connections, contribute to the community and enjoy the camaraderie of like-minded individuals. As she puts it, “I love to make people happy in the gift shop, no matter what they are going through. If I can put a smile on someone’s face, it makes the experience truly rewarding.”

Ryan Tandiama, Abbotsford Regional Hospital

Ryan has been a dedicated volunteer at Abbotsford Regional Hospital (ARH) since May 2022, accumulating 375 hours of service. His roles include assisting at the Welcome and Wayfinding desk, as well as entertaining visitors with his piano skills every Wednesday, typically playing for 30 minutes after his shift in the main atrium. 

Additionally, Ryan extends his commitment to community service by volunteering with the Fraser Valley Health Care Foundation, where he serves as the youth liaison on their board of directors and chairs the youth advisory committee. 

Despite his busy volunteer schedule, he also holds three casual positions within Fraser Health: patient ambassador, hospital porter and coffee shop employee. Currently enrolled in his first year of nursing school at University of the Fraser Valley, Ryan demonstrates a passion for health care and community engagement. 

When asked about his favorite aspect of volunteering, he emphasizes the sense of community at Abbotsford Regional Hospital. 

"What I like most about volunteering is the community at Abbotsford Regional Hospital. I love coming to the hospital every day and seeing all the other fellow volunteers at the info desk, playing the piano or at the gift shop,” Ryan says. “It’s interesting to see and talk to the volunteers who have been volunteering for a long time at Abbotsford Regional Hospital. You always learn something from them. I also love when other people stop by the information desk, come to chat and thank us for volunteering." 

Laurie Albertson, coordinator of Volunteer Resources at Abbotsford Regional Hospital, expresses admiration for Ryan's dedication: "Ryan's commitment to volunteering is truly commendable. His positive energy and willingness to go above and beyond make him an invaluable member of our team."

On a personal note, Ryan is a multi-talented musician who plays the piano, guitar and bass, with a particular love for classical and rock music. His diverse interests and commitment to service make him a valued member of both the Abbotsford Regional Hospital volunteer team and the broader community.

Anne McLaughlin, Mission Memorial Hospital

Anne is a devoted recreation therapy volunteer at The Residence in Mission Long Term Care Community (TRiM), located at Mission Memorial Hospital. Throughout the year, she dedicates her time to creating and personally delivering personalized, handcrafted birthday and festive cards for all 200 residents at the community.

Residents, staff and visitors cherish and appreciate her invaluable contributions. Her passion for enriching the lives of others through volunteerism serves as an inspiration to all. 

"I greatly enjoy volunteering and interacting with the residents at TRiM, says Anne. “Whether it's playing bingo, engaging in arts and crafts activities, or reading stories, spending time with the residents holds a special place in my heart." 

Diana Hunter, program coordinator at The Residence in Mission Long Term Care Community, commends Anne's dedication to volunteering her time with residents. 

“Every Monday, Anne consistently assists with visiting and implementing the bingo program at TRIM. Her gentle, kind, and approachable personality makes her an invaluable member of the Recreation Team,” Diana says. “Additionally, Anne showcases her talent by creating handcrafted greeting cards, generously donating over 400 cards for various occasions. These beautifully handmade cards bring joy to residents and staff alike.”

Her genuine connection with the residents reflects her compassion and makes a significant impact on their well-being.

Jim McGrail, Surrey Memorial Hospital

Since 2008, Jim McGrail has been an integral part of Surrey Memorial Hospital, dedicating an impressive 2,700 hours over the past 16 years. His presence has brought countless memorable moments to the patients, visitors and staff. 

In his role as a Welcome and Wayfinding volunteer, Jim consistently offers friendly and helpful assistance to patients, visitors and staff. Those who have had the pleasure of meeting Jim can attest to his charm, passion and genuine care for others. Throughout his 14-year tenure, Jim has demonstrated resilience in adapting to numerous changes, from supporting the expansion of the Surrey Memorial Hospital Critical Care Tower to maintaining a positive outlook during the challenging times of COVID-19. 

“I have been a Wayfinder at Surrey Memorial Hospital for a number of years and it gives me a lot of joy when I am able to assist patients and visitors to find their way around the hospital,” laughs Jim. 

Before the pandemic, Jim also served as a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Cuddler volunteer, where he provided comfort to precious babies in their most vulnerable moments. Affectionately known as the "grandpa cuddler" on the unit, Jim's compassionate approach to his role was appreciated by staff and medical staff. 

“We extend our heartfelt gratitude to Jim McGrail for his exceptional volunteer service at Surrey Memorial Hospital. His unwavering commitment and compassion have made a profound impact on the hospital community and we are truly fortunate to have him as part of our team,” says Shashi Stein, coordinator, volunteer resources at Surrey Memorial Hospital.

Interested in volunteering at Fraser Health? Learn about opportunities at


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