Portrait of a Supporting Cast Volunteer
PAL Canada’s Supporting Cast program needs volunteers in the GTA and beyond to interact with senior artists. Supporting Cast volunteers provide service to senior artists by assisting them with basic daily chores, companionship, accompanying/driving them to important appointments and fun events. These types of activities performed by volunteers are an integral part of helping to alleviate the feeling of isolation so common among seniors.
To be a Supporting Cast Volunteer, you need to enjoy the company of elderly people, as the main purpose of SC volunteers is to engage senior artists. You might not think that this type of volunteering would be all fun and games, but it actually can be, especially if you enjoy good conversation, and learning from people who have truly lived and have amazing life experiences to share. In addition, not only will you make new friends, but you will also be improving the lives of the people you meet.
If you think that you would like to become a member of our Supporting Cast team and would enjoy this wonderful opportunity to make a difference in the life of a senior artist, please click on the Volunteer application button to complete our application form. One of our team leaders will contact you and they will be able to answer all of your questions about our training program, and all the requirements one needs to be a Supporting Cast volunteer.
Patty Gail Peaker - Supporting Cast Founder
PAL’s Supporting Cast is a group of dedicated volunteers who provide support to individual artists. By providing companionship, transportation, links to available professional community services, etc. they enable artists to stay in their own, familiar environments for as long as they are able. When help is needed, it is offered sensitively, one person to another. Supporting Cast keeps people connected to the arts community, and to their colleagues.
Actor/singer Patty Gail Peaker, member of the founding PAL Board, helped spearhead PAL’s Supporting Cast while waiting to find the site the first PAL Place in Toronto. Before the bricks and mortar phase of an actual building, this endeavour is crucial to the success of the PAL model. For 25 years Supporting Cast has helped in whatever way possible while maintaining professional assistance in a confidential and discreet manner.
I wondered what fuels super-charged activists like Patty Gail who never seem to flag. She responded, “The reward for me personally is that I have seen a dream come true. Today there are functioning Supporting Casts all across Canada stemming from new PAL chapters – this is the dream come true, and it is still playing”. Ferne Downey (Taken from ACTRA Magazine, Summer 2009 Issue)