Historic Calgary Week brings out the best in volunteerism
David Ballard, who retired 27 years ago, and moved into Garrison Green with his wife Diana two years ago, isn’t letting retirement slow him down. As a former teacher, he often volunteered with community groups, and it’s no different today.
David and Diana joined the Chinook Country Historical Society, which promotes the history of this part of Alberta. Part of that promotion is Historic Calgary Week, which runs this year from July 22 to August 1. The 10-day “week” celebrates the history of Calgary and surrounding towns with more than 60 walks, talks and tours.
“I think we’ve always been involved in the community in some aspect or other,” said David. “When I retired, I wanted to stay involved. As an example, Diana was involved with CARP (Canadian Association of Retired Persons) when the Calgary chapter started in 1995, and I became secretary of the chapter.”
His involvement in the Historical Society is one of many examples of David’s commitment to the community. “Over time, the pace of life seems to be more hectic. People’s time is stretched thin with family and work, but that also means less time to commit to the community, and I think finding time to volunteer is very important. One thing I’ve noticed is that young people are more involved in volunteer work.”
Diana passed away 18 months ago, and David remains very involved in the United Active Living community, and in the larger Calgary community. David noted how the United community came together to support him when Diana passed away. “It was very gratifying to me the way they helped her during her illness and how they supported me.”
David sees volunteering as essential to the success of any community. “They say that it takes a village to raise a child and that speaks directly to volunteering the time to do that. Plus, it’s important to be involved so that you know what’s going on around you.”
“I watched the Calgary Stampede parade on television and it really struck me how many community organizations were involved. The various communities in Calgary are very involved in the life of the city and that’s one of the things that makes Calgary a great city to live in.”
David is going to be busy during Historic Calgary Week, and United’s programming team is supporting with a series of lectures at United’s Garrison Green. For a full schedule of Historic Calgary Week programs, go to www.chinookhistory.ca and look for the Historic Calgary Week section.
Photos by David Ballard, Glenbow Archives. Videos by Sherana Productions.
Speak with one of our active living advisors about life in a United community. They can arrange tours of our Garrison Green and Fish Creek communities. If you know a friend or family member who could benefit from living in a United community, send them a link to our website or blog, or arrange a future visit. We are happy to help!