Welcome to the Arts Beat newsletter, where we feature a round-up of news updates posted to the Hamilton Arts Council blog by our staff, Board of Directors and members of our artistic community. We're sending out this Arts Beat newsletter every month and welcome submissions from our artist members. If you'd like to contribute to the blog please contact stephen@hamiltonartscouncil.ca to discuss your ideas.

Volunteer for the Win

By Stephen Near

This week is National Volunteer Week which means you may have seen a lot of talk across social media about the importance of volunteers and the contribution they make to the not-for-profit sector. Part of my job with Hamilton Arts Council involves finding volunteers who are willing and able to contribute their time to furthering our goals. Aside from finding the right person for the right job, organizations that seek volunteer support must themselves be prepared for the experience. This can present challenges to those in the not-for-profit sector where a do-it-yourself attitude often rules the day.

Like many not-for-profits, the Hamilton Arts Council has worked extensively with volunteers to shape our work in the community. Our organization has gone through many changes and volunteers have helped us turn ideas into action along the way. And some of our most valuable volunteers have come from the most unexpected places. For example, my friend Marvin was a recent arrival to both Canada and Hamilton back in 2011 and was looking to put down roots in the city. He not only offered to...

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