McMaster UniversityMcMaster University Retirees Association (MURA)


Volunteering at McMaster

Want to stay involved on campus?

Opportunities are frequently available for Mac retirees to continue to support our McMaster community, while participating in fulfilling and rewarding volunteer work. MURA provides information on available volunteer opportunities in its quarterly newsletter, MURAnews, and also sends notices via email. To be added to the MURA member email list, send a request by email to

Don’t want to volunteer alone? Most volunteer activities work well with a teamwork approach. So when you see an opportunity that appeals to you, get in touch with your retiree friends and volunteer as a team.

Volunteering off campus

A few major off-campus volunteer organizations

Volunteering news

  • April 28, 2018 11:05 AM | Anonymous
    Retirees are needed to help with a major community engagement project offered by Student Open Circles during the school year. More than 300 McMaster University students volunteer weekly at agencies throughout Hamilton. Many of these students volunteer in one of two programs as tutors and mentors for children and youth:
    • the LAF (Learning and Fun) afterschool program at Welcome Inn for children in Grades 1 to 8 and 
    • Pathways to Education for high school students on Tuesday evenings at the North Hamilton Community Health Centre.
    During May and June, many McMaster students are unable to continue this work. So we are asking for MURA members to help to fill this gap so these children and youth can continue to receive help until the end of school year.
    Here are quotes from two McMaster volunteers:

    Justin Brunet:
    “I volunteer and facilitate at Pathways to Education, a tutoring program for at-risk high school students at the North Hamilton Community Health Centre. Not only do we assist in homework and assignments, we also act as a mentor and social support system for these students. Knowing that students are excited to see you at Pathways and specifically ask for your tutoring help is heartwarming. The volunteers who have worked with me at Pathways continuously tell me that they enjoy being there each week and have provided large amounts of positive feedback!”

    Betty Zhang:
    “I began volunteering with Student Open Circles as a tutor and mentor for new youth immigrants and was exposed to the vulnerability of young refugees. I was deeply moved as I got to know a young girl who had spent over seven years at a refugee camp in Lebanon with limited access to education and role models. Now, in the Canadian school system, she not only struggled with English literacy, but also with believing in her ability to achieve her ambitions. I realized that even more than textbooks, she needed a mentor to help her believe in herself. I had the privilege of watching her grow every week while volunteering.”

    We can support McMaster students’ valuable work during the academic year by filling in the gap left when their term has ended. Thanks for considering this opportunity.

    LAF (Learning and Fun) after school program – choose 1 of Mondays – Thursdays (2:50pm-5:30pm)
    • Work with at-risk kids in small groups and one-on-one using creative and fun tools to assist with financial literacy activities, homework completion, and social skills. Help facilitate activities and programming for students from Grades 1-8

    Pathways to Education – Tuesdays (4:30-7:35pm)
    • Tutor high school students through homework assignments, studying, social engagement and conversation

    For more information or to sign up for a weekly volunteer group, contact the Student Open Circles’ Community Volunteer Action Program at
  • February 28, 2018 1:13 PM | Anonymous

    Burlington Seniors Community Inc. seeks volunteers to help with their ‘Seniors Without Walls’ program that reaches out to socially isolated and homebound seniors through a free teleconferencing group program.

    Volunteers are urgently needed to act as MODERATORS and FACILITATORS.


    Moderators connect with registrants, assist the Facilitator (presenter) in ensuring a smooth flow of conversation, and assist with technical difficulties.

    Time Required:  1-2 hours weekly; flexible schedule. One year commitment; can be done from a quiet space in your home.

    Qualifications:  excellent communication and listening skills, ability to maintain confidentiality, comfort using on-line software. Training and orientation will be provided.


    Facilitators provide an educational presentation that is informative, fun and interesting (an excellent way for retired professors to share their knowledge).

    Time Required:  once or more throughout the year. Can be done from home.

    Qualifications:  knowledge about a topic that you are willing to share. Comfort with speaking and question answering. Training and orientation will be provided.

    Contact Penny or Gail by email at:

    Burlington Seniors Community Inc
    P.O. Box 91584
    Roseland Plaza
    Burlington, Ontario, L7R 4L6

  • January 26, 2018 9:52 PM | Anonymous

    Wesley Urban Ministries believes many Mac retirees will be a great fit as volunteers for their program that assists newcomers to Canada. Volunteers are needed to be English Conversation Partners, Friends of Newcomers and Travel Companions of Newcomers, as well as other opportunities available depending a volunteer’s interest. Contact Dorar Abuzaid at or call 905-528- 5629, ext. 228.

  • December 09, 2017 5:13 PM | Anonymous

    The Canadian Red Cross, in partnership with the Department of Family Medicine, McMaster University, is recruiting volunteers for the new Health Tapestry program. Health TAPESTRY, a program developed at McMaster University, aims to help older adults stay out of emergency rooms and be more mobile.

    In this program, trained volunteers visit older adults where they live. During these visits, volunteers learn about what matters most to that person and about their health and life goals. This information is passed on from clients to volunteers and then sent to the client’s primary health care team using special technology. This information helps the interprofessional team learn more about how they can help that person stay healthy longer. The health care team also connects with community organizations to help the person access activities and resources in their community.
    The Canadian Red Cross will be managing the coordination of volunteers for this program and as such they require volunteers to get on-boarded as a Canadian Red Cross volunteer. The job description and application process can be done through this link.  After this step they will arrange interviews.

    Client visits take 1 to 2 hours and visits are within the community. Local travel via personal or public transit is required. Meetings and supervision may be in person, by telephone, email or internet, so volunteers need access to these. Most volunteers commit about 6 hours per month to these activities.

    For more information about these volunteer positions, please contact the volunteer coordinator, email Nelson Ruiz Blanco or call 905-522-8485, ext. 5221266.

  • November 03, 2017 11:50 PM | Anonymous

    Hamilton Literacy Council is looking for volunteer tutors to teach English-speaking adults basic reading, writing and math. Next orientation session: Monday, February 5th, 2018 1:00 or 5:00 p.m. (Approximately 1 hour) Register in advance. Two-day certified training workshop, Friday, February 16th, 2018, 9:00 - 4:00 p.m. AND Friday, February 23rd, 2018, 9:00 - 4:00 p.m. Must attend both Fridays.

    Register: 905-529-9907 or See for more information.

    For the Halton region, contact Literacy South Halton. Burlington: 905-631-1770. Oakville: 905-469-8528. Online information:

  • November 03, 2017 11:49 PM | Anonymous

    Volunteers are needed to assist blind and partially sighted community members with walking, reading, organizing, or just coffee and conversation. If you would like to be a part of this program, contact David Wallis at 888-275-5332, ext. 5304 or Seeking young adults and seniors.

  • November 03, 2017 11:48 PM | Anonymous

    Volunteers are urgently needed to share social time and conversation visiting seniors in their home. Volunteers are also needed to deliver Meals on Wheels, and to assist in the adult day care centre, tending their new community garden, and spending time one-on-one or in group activities with clients. Contact 529-0700 or

  • November 03, 2017 11:47 PM | Anonymous

    Do you know an isolated senior?

    Is there a senior in your neighbourhood who may benefit from connecting with other seniors? Is there an older friend or family member you wish had more connections to the community?

    Peer Connector volunteers age 55+ provide in-home social support and can accompany isolated seniors to attend activities and appointments in the community.

    Call 905-522-9922, ext. 316 or email Shannon Hanley to find out if the Seniors Peer Connector program can help the senior you know, or to become a Peer Connector volunteer yourself.

  • June 05, 2017 11:55 PM | Anonymous
    MURA is looking for a trips & special events coordinator to arrange day trips for MURA members and friends. If you like to go on day trips with other retirees, please consider taking on this role.

    You would work with other members of MURA’s Trips & Special Events Committee to plan and coordinate one or more day trips per year. These might be trips to concerts, theatres or art galleries, outdoor activities, walking tours, dining out, lectures or workshops, and could include any activities that might be of interest to our members.

    If you would like to volunteer or to find out more, please send us an email or leave a message at 905-525-9140 ext. 23171.

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