A stay at the hospital is never easy, but the holidays can be especially grim for patients who aren’t able to participate in their usual celebrations. Volunteers for a Smile is a student-run not-for-profit that organizes social events at Montreal hospitals during various celebrations—like New Years, Halloween, and Thanksgiving—with the goal of “bringing the party inside” and a smile to patients’ faces.
They also partner with International Student Learning to provide free access to basic health services in developing countries. Each year, they recruit and train a group of students to help under-served populations in politically stable countries like Belize, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, and Tanzania.
Finally, Volunteers for a Smile runs a mentorship program for disadvantaged youth. The program pairs trained students with a mentee from a different partner school in Montreal. The regular activities of Volunteers for a Smile provide a framework within which mentors connect with, guide, and support their mentees.
For more information, see Volunteers for a Smile’s website.