By Kathy McGrath

Kelsey Dorval is one of those steady-Eddie types who can be counted on to get the job done.  As a member of the CCRA executive committee for the past 10 years, her strong organizational skills have been integral to the group.

Currently, her job is to recruit and support the advertisers that allow this paper to stay in print, a volunteer position that requires constant communication and attention to detail. According to CCRA President Kathy Rowe, Kelsey works hard on behalf of the advertisers and always has their best interest at heart.

“Many of our advertisers are small businesses and, for them, spending $250 is a big deal,” explains Kelsey. “I feel like it’s important to respond to their questions and concerns in a timely manner.”

One of the joys of volunteer work for Kelsey is connecting with people in her community. She has known some of the advertisers long enough that they relate on a personal level. “Just off the top of my head, three of our advertisers live on my street,” she explains. “We are at the point where we inquire about each other’s families.”

Family is top of mind these days for Kelsey, whose adult daughter Melanie (a former St. Brendan student) will soon give birth to a baby girl. “I can’t wait,” says Kelsey who is enjoying  shopping for baby clothes.  Her son, Mark, is currently studying for his PhD in the Netherlands, which affords travel opportunities to Kelsey and her husband Mark.

As a long-time resident, Kelsey understands that without the advertisers there would be no newspaper, and without the newspaper the organization would suffer.  “The paper allows us to communicate with people. And if we make a few extra dollars one month, it goes right back into the community.”

Kelsey wants Centennial residents to know they don’t have to commit a large amount of time in order to volunteer for the CCRA. “Even if people help in a small way, like taking part in Earth Day or helping to set up tables at an event, it does a lot to benefit the neighbourhood. Do something that is easy for you,” she encourages.