Better ways to spend my time

My partner and I just bought a puppy.

She’s a cute little thing; very energetic, but still not sure how to live in a regular home.

The training is going relatively well, but as you can imagine, it takes a long time to teach a puppy she can’t use the indoors for her outdoors business.

The other night I cleaned up several messes in the house, which got to be time consuming after scrubbing the carpets. I spent an additional two hours, at least, throughout the night, outside with the puppy, trying to get her to use the outdoor facilities for a change.

That’s two hours of my life watching a puppy’s backside, hoping for something to happen that shouldn’t excite me as much as it does.

As for my partner, she spends more time with our newest family member than I do.

So I got to thinking, while watching the dog finally relieve herself, that there’s got to be something better we could have been doing with our time.

And then it dawned on me.

There are people in this county who forego these indulgences and instead devote their time to others. Rather than spending their time with puppies, friends or family, or working at a hobby or pastime, these individuals help others in myriad ways, every day.

I’m talking about our volunteers.

This weekend is the Volunteer Fair, put on by SIRCH, CanoeFM and Community Care Haliburton.

The fair is an opportunity for organizations to reach out in the community and try to recruit help. Despite the vast number of volunteers out there, Haliburton needs more.

The fair is also for people who want to start volunteering but don’t know where to begin. It gives them the chance to meet with volunteers and organizations in hopes of finding something that suits them.

Haliburton is a place that runs on these volunteers. There are so many groups and organizations out there that depend on volunteers to provide the services so many rely on.

CanoeFM, for example, would be nowhere without its volunteer broadcasters, organizers and administrators. SIRCH’s meal delivery program would be hard pressed to get food out to those who depend on it without volunteer drivers.

Just look at how much money the HHHS Foundation raised last year for the hospital. None of that would have been possible without volunteers.

But it’s not easy to devote your time to a cause you don’t really connect with. If you’ve never had a loved one in palliative care, it may be difficult to engage with that kind of volunteer program.

That’s why the Volunteer Fair is such an important event in the county. It ensures that people get into it with eyes open, for a cause they are passionate about.

So tonight, as I spend those quality hours with my new puppy, I’ll be thinking of other ways I could spend my time.

Maybe I’ll see you at the fair.

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