Scott McMillan started volunteering with SMD/Easter Seals Manitoba (ESMB) in 1995 and has amassed over 2,100 hours. He has gained tremendous understanding of the various programs/services we offer along with the multiple fundraisers he’s participated in over the years.
He has supported our Children and Adult Recreation & Leisure programs as a Summer Access worker and supported special events such as Drop Zone.
Scott’s first fundraiser was the 24-Hour Relay where groups of 10-15 people took turns walking the track 1 hour at a time for 24 hours. He reminisces about the joys of having a bonfire and playing volleyball while waiting for his time to walk. “I also helped out with the setup/take-down of the event, assisted with registration, and cheered people on” he says with a grin.
Next, he was involved in our summer kid’s camps where “We used to get a full week of training ahead of time,” he says. “I got a chance to meet a lot of wonderful kids,” he adds. The camps offer a wide-range of adaptive activities such as swimming, arts and crafts, archery, zip-lining, fishing, field games, etc. Scott said it was a lot of fun and was involved for 10 years before moving into the Adult Recreation and Leisure program.
At birth, Scott was diagnosed with a learning disability. “I grew up around people with learning or physical disabilities,” he says. Having an invisible disability made school challenging. “I found it very hard not only due to my disability, but I was bullied as well.” Over time, the hardships he experienced morphed into compassion and kindness for others who had a disability as he began volunteering in high school. “I can relate to the people I volunteer with,” he says. Scott also joined the Special Olympics track team and was passionate about running for many years “It was my most favourite thing to do.”
When asked why people should volunteer, he answers confidently, “To give back is so important and it feels good. Especially since SMD/ESMB supported me for many years.” He highlights that SMD/ESMB provides a safe environment where it feels good to be around people who care.
Due to so many wonderful experiences Scott’s had over the years, he wants to get the message out to future volunteers, “It’s a great organization. There are man things to do. Come out and volunteer!” he exclaims.
Scott has also gained valuable skills through volunteering. “I’ve improved my communications skills and life skills such as cooking, public speaking, and just encouraging others while having fun and enjoying their company.”
When asked what his favourite part of volunteering is, he says, “Everyone succeeding in their goals, having fun, being safe and communicating.”
Scott’s straight-to-the-point encouraging bit of advice to anyone considering volunteering is, “Go for it, it’s great” he laughs. “It’s never too late!”
Help us celebrate Scott by sharing this incredible story!