Cuso International Alumni 150 Volontaire

Special tribute highlights impact volunteers have made in Canada

In honour of Canada 150+ and beyond, Cuso International is launching Canada 150+ Volunteers, a special tribute to recognize volunteers who have made an impact around the world, and here at home. The 150 Volunteers project launches in time for Canada Day and will continue through to December with new volunteer stories added throughout the coming months.

“Many of our volunteers have shared their stories with us about how their service with Cuso International had an impact on their lives long after returning from their placement, making a significant contribution in Canada, too,” said Glenn Mifflin, CEO, Cuso International. “From sponsoring refugees to developing curriculum for a new Indigenous school board to serving as an elected official, our volunteers continue to contribute in positive ways to this country and the world.”

Since 1961, Cuso International volunteers have exemplified Canadian values of volunteerism. Cuso International has deployed nearly 13,000 volunteers around the world with many volunteering multiple times. From coast to coast in Canada, volunteers have travelled to Asia, Africa, South America and the Caribbean to integrate into communities for months, even years, and share their professional skills.

Volunteers have been personally touched by the communities they served, just as those communities have been impacted by their efforts. As teachers, business development advisors, gender equity champions and project managers, they have helped communities grow.

When volunteers return home to Canada and apply the skills and knowledge gained from their international experiences, the results have been powerful. Over the years, Cuso International volunteer placements have been the catalyst for some of our country’s leading activists, business leaders and public servants to inspire other Canadians to volunteer, give and make a difference.

The 150 Volunteers project aims to share stories of how Canada and its communities have been served by Cuso International alumni. Read more about Cuso International’s 150 Volunteers.

Examples of Canadians Making an Impact

1960s: Twenty-five year-old Keith Spicer, a student at the time, inspired by world events, was passionate about the idea of young Canadians serving overseas. An idea that became part of the founding of Cuso International. Keith went on to become an important figure in our country’s history around issues of media and unity.

1980s: A volunteer placed in Nigeria, Nora Murdock says the experience was life changing for her; she dedicated her career to shaping education in First Nations communities in Canada.

2000s: After a volunteer placement in Kenya, Richelle Matthews continued to work in developing communities in Bangladesh and Sub Saharan Africa. Just recently she was one of six teams selected to compete for a million dollar prize that would be used to help refugees in West Africa.

Nominate a Cuso International volunteer

Do you know someone who was a Cuso International volunteer, and has since made a notable contribution to Canada? We want to hear from you.

Cuso International relies on the financial support of individuals to enable volunteers to be placed in communities in need.