• James Parry

Palliative Care Residence Foundation appoints St. Lazare resident to key financing role Julie-Anne L


JAMES PARRY

Formerly with Air Canada, VSPCR Julie-Anne Lambert will focus on raising money through fundraising and community initiatives while building a give-give relationship with donors and sponsors.

Celebrating its 10th anniversary next year, the Vaudreuil-Soulanges Palliative Care Residence Foundation recently named St. Lazare resident, Julie-Anne Lambert, its assistant executive director of financing. In this exclusive interview with Your Local Journal, Lambert - recently retired from Air Canada - explains her new role and what this will entail in the coming months for those in need of palliative care, and their families, within our region. What exactly is your mandate?

“Throughout the years, VaudreuilSoulanges residents, municipalities, organizations, and various companies have been very generous in helping ill patients and for this we are eternally grateful. However, it is increasingly difficult to raise the $1.1 million the residence needs annually to operate and provide free care for those in need. With the new hospital around the corner, the donor pool will become even smaller.

And I was hired to focus solely on raising money through fundraising and other means, generate new ideas, and find ways to continue giving back to our community. We want a give-give relationship with our donors and sponsors, and it needs to be a partnership.”

What is your professional background?

I worked for Air Canada for over 28 years and my last position there was senior director, customer service standards working behind the scenes and not dealing with customers directly. My last assignment with Air Canada was to launch the In-Flight Service branch of the company’s new airline, Air Canada rouge.”

When and why did you first become a volunteer with the Residence, in what capacity, and how have you been helping since?

“While I was working, I read an article about a volunteer who worked in patient care for the VSPCR. It was a truly inspiring story so I cut it out. I knew that’s what I wanted to do when I retired. While cleaning out my home office after leaving the company, I came across the article and called Volunteer Coordinator, Mireille Fink, right away. I became a volunteer in the fall of 2013 and I really got involved. Mostly I worked in the kitchen on Monday night and every second Saturday mornings, in Patient Care every second Tuesday night, and I was on call for last minute coverage. I also led the In Memory Of Committee, wrote the Patient Care manual, and took on the lead role for the Yearly Draw Committee. Although I have had to reduce the volunteer hours since I started working full time last month, I still work in the kitchen every Monday night, Patient Care on call, and I still lead the two committees.”

Why do you believe the Residence is so important, not only for Hudson where it is based, but also for the entire region?

“I thank our lucky stars we have such a world-class palliative care residence in our area. We are very, very fortunate. Most people in Vaudreuil-Soulanges will, at one point in their lifetime, need the services of the VSPCR or visit someone who is in residence. Yet, it amazes me that there are still so many people who don’t even know about us or realize how fortunate they are to have a palliative care residence in their neighbourhood. But it can only continue with the generosity and support of the community.”

Your thoughts on how important volunteers are for the residence, as well as the support of the business community?

“As mentioned earlier, we rely on the support of the Vaudreuil-Soulanges community to be sustainable. Our logo, Together Ensemble, means we are all in this together. By working together - residents, businesses, municipalities, associations, and the like - we can ensure continued palliative care for the future to come. We are so appreciative when the community holds an event for the benefit of the VSPCR and I am humbled when I hear of what some people actually do. There is no donation that is too big or too small. And if someone has an idea to raise money, we have proactive volunteers that would be happy to help. We also try to be inventive ourselves with our fundraising events so that it provides something fun for the participants and donors.”

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