Volunteer Week 2024

Volunteer Feature – Bette French

VHF Volunteer Bette at the Royal Jubilee Hospital in Victoria BC

This Volunteer Appreciation Week, we extend our heartfelt gratitude to the incredible volunteers who contribute their time, skills, and compassion to the Victoria Hospitals Foundation. Through countless selfless contributions, tireless efforts, and unwavering compassion VHF volunteers demonstrate a powerful testament to the profound impact individuals can have when united in a common cause.

VHF volunteers have contributed a total of over 1,350 hours of service this past year, making a difference in the lives of patients, families, and healthcare workers across Vancouver Island. As one of those volunteers, Bette is a part of our in-office team, and often serves as a cheerful voice and powerful advocate of the Foundation, calling donors to share our gratitude for their generous support.

In honour of Volunteer Appreciation Week, we asked Bette to share about her journey and experience as a VHF volunteer:

VHF: What inspired you to volunteer for the Victoria Hospitals Foundation?

Bette: Being a recent widow, I had been looking for a volunteer opportunity, but it had to be the right fit. My late husband and I have been donors for a number of years. I was fortunate to be invited to a luncheon by the Foundation. I was so impressed with the presentation from the doctors, Avery (Foundation CEO), and her team. I knew I had to be involved with this dynamic group of people. Their passion was undeniable and infectious, it was clear to me that this was the organization that I wanted to be a part of.

VHF: What do our local hospitals mean to you?

Bette: Everything. We are so lucky to have such dedicated healthcare professionals in our hospitals. Even with the challenges that they face every day – the caring provided is unsurpassed. My husband had the very best of care while in hospital and couldn’t say enough great things about them. He was very grateful to live in a city with 3 excellent facilities.

VHF: What makes you most proud as a volunteer of the Foundation?

Bette: Knowing the funds raised here, stay here. Helping people from not only Victoria but all over the Island. The positive comments received from donors when speaking with them is gratifying.

VHF: What is your favourite memory of your time at the Foundation?

Bette: Getting to meet Avery and the Foundation staff. The big, warm welcome from all of them. It is heartwarming to feel that even the smallest amount of volunteer time is greatly appreciated.

VHF: What do you do, outside of your role as Foundation volunteer?

Bette: My hobby for the last 11 years has been backyard chickens. I have laying hens that have brought me, my family and friends lots of joy and lots of eggs! I have recently joined the board for Christ Church Cathedral, my portfolio being Community Life. I enjoy meeting people and making them feel welcomed. Other interests are baking, cooking and spending time with all my wonderful friends. In the future I look forward to doing some travelling.

Responses provided by Bette French, April 1, 2024