Volunteer Spotlight – Qamar Hassan

Our volunteers play a vital role in creating more moments for Albertans facing cancer. By helping at events, or offering their professional talents in our offices. Their hard work allows us to invest more time and effort into our vision of a cancer-free future.

This month we would like to recognize Qamar Hassan, for all of her excellent work and commitment to our organization.

Before starting her journey with Alberta Cancer Foundation in July of 2020, Qamar, a student at the University of Alberta, found herself with time due to COVID-19, which left her wondering, what next? That’s when she came across a volunteering opportunity at the Alberta Cancer Foundation. She began to imagine how someone impacted by cancer would feel – the fear, stress, and pain associated with a diagnosis and wanted to do something to help.

“Ultimately, I was lead to appreciate how the Alberta Cancer Foundation has made it possible for those to lessen their burden financially, helping them better navigate their options in the future and I want to be a part of that,” says Qamar.

Since then, she has become a dedicated and valuable member of the team, volunteering over 45 hours at the Foundation.

Qamar has helped with packaging patient journals to cancer centres and other administrative tasks in the office. As a patient journal volunteer, some of her key roles include working on patient journal bags that are to be distributed to cancer centers across the province. These journals are given to new patients to help keep tracking of information, appointments, and questions about their cancer journey. She also assists with various other administrative and HR-related tasks, including ensuring cancer centres are equipped with the necessary resources to support new patients, as well as supporting the supporting the Foundation’s Fund Development and Communications & Marketing team with various administrative tasks.

“Qamar is always joyful when she comes to volunteer at the Foundation, you can “see” her smiling face through her mask,” says Katie Wiebe, Human Resource Analyst in Operations. “She has been a consistent positive presence at the Alberta Cancer Foundation’s Edmonton office.”

One of Qamar’s favourite aspects of her volunteer work is the small moments where she gets to say hello to other members at the Alberta Cancer Foundation (at a distance, with a mask, of course). She also feels great joy packaging the journals, knowing that she is a part of helping someone at their most vulnerable times

“I have learned that everyone has a part to play in helping,” says Qamar. “I feel that I became more open-minded about what change looks like, and sometimes it is a person in a board room packaging journals to a patient I will never see. I feel like I gained hope. “

When asked what her favorite place to visit is in Alberta, Qamar has not yet had the pleasure of travelling to many places in Alberta but had a very memorable trip as a camp counselor at Pigeon Lake. “It was the first time I stayed in a cabin and as silly as it sounds, I felt at peace.”

Volunteers like Qamar, make it possible for the foundation to support Albertans facing cancer. We are grateful to her and our group of dedicated volunteers for their passion and commitment.

Learn more about our purpose at the Alberta Cancer Foundation.