Lorette Penn is a familiar face at Wranglers games.
Most people will recognize her as one of the people sitting behind the table selling programs.
She has been volunteering at the games since the team moved to 100 Mile House in 2013.
‘Oh yeah,” she said, ‘I’ve been a volunteer with them since day one.”
She and her husband moved to 100 Mile House in 1974.
They started a store called Harkins selling electrical appliances, records and similar items. A couple of years down the road, Penn opened a crafty-type business called Lucky Locker.
At the same time, she was raising a family and being a business owner, she also volunteered her time with Lady Lions and her husband joined Lions. She said the Lady Lions did not do too much but it still allowed her to give back.
When the Northern BC Winter Games came to town in 2006 Penn stepped up again to recruit other volunteers to work at the games.
“That was fun. We did a lot of volunteering for that,” she said.
She volunteers as she wants to give back to the community.
“When you volunteer and raise the money you are helping a lot of people who have nothing, so it is always good,” she said.
When the Lions Club opened to women Penn jumped at the opportunity to join. There are several women members of the club now, she said.
This past summer Penn helped sell raffle tickets for the cash lottery draw for the 100 Mile Lions, helping to make sure there were people at FreshCo, Save-On-Foods and out at the 108 Mall.
When the children were young, Penn said the time commitment behind volunteering was harder. She had to organize.
Now that she is retired and on her own, it fills up her day.
Penn said she volunteers a lot which is how she wound up working with the Wranglers. Someone asked if she wanted to volunteer and she said sure, why not.
Crime Stoppers has since disbanded in 100 Mile House but in the past, she worked with the organization to help reduce crime in town.
Penn wishes she knew why it has become so hard for sports organizations and community groups to get volunteers.
“I wish - I wish, I knew the answer. If people are afraid to go out and help other people?” Penn asked. “It is very rewarding when you’re volunteering and helping other people.”
Penn said she does not understand why those who are 30 to 50 are not stepping up. She wonders if they might find it boring but suggests giving back and seeing how it feels.
She mentioned that there are not any young people in the Lions Club these days either. The members are all getting older and there isn’t anyone stepping up to take their place and keep the club operating.
She invites anyone who might like to check Lions out to get in touch with a member and come out to a meeting.