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Helping Hands preparing for future of continued service in Cochrane

After 10 years serving the disadvantaged in the community, Helping Hands Society of Cochrane and Area shares their updated mission statement and mandate to better serve Cochrane.
(Left to right) April Baird, Laura McDonald, and Melia Hayes of the Helping Hands Society of Cochrane and Area.

After nearly 10 years helping provide for those in need in the community, The Helping Hands Society of Cochrane and Area would like to share their updated mission statement, language, and mandate with the community.

As a registered charity in the community, it aims to offer barrier-free programs for various community members facing challenges.

For Helping Hands Cochrane, they define vulnerable individuals as those who do not have natural support or facing temporary hardships.

In their new mission statement, Helping Hands Cochrane will strengthen the community and reduce vulnerability by connecting volunteers to people needing support through innovating programs and collaborative responses.

With their new vision statement – Our community is empowered to connect and support one another, it is also reflected in their value set of compassion, responsibility, respect, reciprocity, honour, equality, trust, connecting community, and collaboration.

Laura McDonald, executive director of Helping Hands Society of Cochrane and Area, said the change came as a way to acknowledge the growth and evolution that they have experienced.

“The organization has been around since 2007, so we pride ourselves on being a really agile-leading charity in town that is meeting the needs of Cochrane today, and will continue to meet the needs of Cochrane tomorrow,” McDonald said. “So, we as an entire organization, staff, and board members came together under the guidance of strategic planners and they helped us put today’s Helping hands into words and really reflect who we are today.

Looking to the future, McDonald said Helping Hands is constantly watching how Cochrane changes.

“Our food rescue programs are growing like crazy,” she said. “We’re constantly growing our team of volunteers, we’re brining in new food rescue partners all the time, and so you’ll see Helping Hands going through major changes.”

With big plans in the near future, McDonald said this is all to better innovate new programs and increase their capacity for community services.

Constantly challenging the concepts of charity in Cochrane, McDonald said it is important to share the future of the organization in town.

“Because of that really great work we’ve done for organizational clarity and value sets, we can now have those conversations and point people to our value sets and say we don’t turn anyone away,” she said. “If you tell us you need food, you’re welcome to come and take food.

Daniel Gonzalez

About the Author: Daniel Gonzalez

Daniel Gonzalez joined the Cochrane Eagle in 2022. He is a graduate of the Mount Royal University Journalism program. He has worked for the Kids Cancer Care Foundation of Alberta and as a reporter in rural Alberta for the ECA Review.
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