PCC Celebrates National Volunteer Week: Travon and Stefano's Story

Each year, Peel Children’s Centre counts on the efforts of more than 100 specially trained volunteers. As mentors, tutors, drivers, childcare workers, respite providers and fundraising assistants, our volunteers are critical to the success of our programs. We join with the rest of Canada’s volunteer sector to celebrate and thank our volunteers during National Volunteer Week. Keep reading to learn more about Travon and Stefano, two friends who support two young men as male mentors.

Travon and Stefano have been best friends since grade 9, and it’s easy to see why. The two have a lot in common, including a keen interest in justice and how the law operates in society. Today, Stefano is a Justice Studies student at the University of Guelph-Humber, and Travon studies Political Science at York University. Both are interested in careers in policing.

A desire to learn more about their community – and themselves – is what moved both Travon and Stefano to become volunteer mentors. Stefano says he wanted to spend time in his community and learn more about the vulnerable people he might one day engage with as a police officer. For Travon, volunteering presented an opportunity to expand his horizons by trying something new.

Travon and Stefano are volunteer mentors, which means they each spend time during the week with a young man who can benefit from their life experience and friendship. In return, Stefano says he’s learned a lot about time management. “My mentee is learning from me,” he says, “So when we’re supposed to meet up at 3 p.m., it’s important that I be on time. I’m sending the message that our appointment matters and that being on time matters.”

Travon agrees that becoming a volunteer mentor has taught him a lot about the value of time, too. When he first thought about volunteering, Travon wasn’t sure where it would fit into his already jam packed schedule. “Things shift,” he says, adding, “You make time for the things that matter and you realize that the possibilities are limitless.”

Stefano and Travon believe that being good role models to their mentees will have a positive impact on their larger community. They also recognize that male mentors are in high demand, and strongly encourage their peers to get involved with the program, too. “For 18 – 22 year-olds, this is the time to figure out who you are,” urges Travon. “Never say no to opportunities. You can learn a lot about yourself and what you want to contribute to the world.”

Stefano agrees. “Everyone has the time and ability to volunteer, but not everyone uses it,” he says. “It’s easier and a lot more fun than you think!”

If you are interested in becoming a part of our volunteer programs at PCC, please contact our Volunteer Coordinator, Linda Buchanan, at 905-795-3500 ext. 2260 or use the online form available on our website.

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