The Power of Volunteerism in the West

 By Maggie Chen

My family and I immigrated to to British Columbia, Canada from Taiwan in 2003. We were like any new immigrant family; we struggled with the new life and the new language.

We tried to find a better way to settle down in Canada. Our two children, Alice who was 10 years old and Willie who was 7 years old, worked hard to try to rise up to the new challenge.

 I went to a Multicultural Association to volunteer and what I saw impressed me: people helped each other and the community at no cost. Volunteerism is such a powerful thing in western culture!

 I eventually reached the position of  Board of Director and  President at the Multicultural Association,  so I had a chance to understand non-profit society structures and policies. 

 Volunteerism has given me the time to discover my own potential – my strength and abilities. I discovered I have strong Leadership and Organization skills and that gave me confidence in Canada. It has also given me the feeling of belonging – that I am part of this city, country and I am proud of who I am as a Chinese Canadian today. 

 In 2005, my family and I moved from B.C. to Calgary. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting & Statistics, so I went back to school to update my career.

In 2007, I decided to start my own business, CTL Accounting & Business Solutions. I remember the first year as being challenging, but I didn’t give up my dream. I worked hard to build my trust business relationship with my clients. 

In 2011, I branded my company to CTL Business Group Limited and extended our businesses services into International Business Consultations, Mandarin Language Training and Accounting. We have two offices in Calgary,Canada and Taipei,Taiwan now. On March 13 to April 12, 2012, we will open Business & Travel Mandarin Language Program to the public at Suncor Energy Centre West Tower Meeting Room. (

 In my heart, I didn’t forget the powerful impact of volunteerism that brought me to where I am today. For this reason, I founded the Alberta Chinese Canadian Friendship Association in 2010. Our three major missions are Taking Care of Our Environment, Engaging to the Community and Concerning the Generation.

I would like to help people who are struggling in different issues – such as careers, family and friends – find support that they need here. I also want to spread the idea of volunteerism to the community. I often hear people saying they don’t have time to volunteer because of jobs, family and other reasons, but if you can spend even 2 hours per month to help your neighbors, community and environmental issues, I think this world would change for the better because of everybody’s efforts.

 Alberta Chinese Canadian Friendship Association invites you to join our Year of Dragon Celebration “Making Chinese Dumplings Together.” You can go online to register. The celebration will held at noon, Sunday on Feb 26 at Old Y Centre, 223, 12 Avenue SW.

 Community is emerging and our world is shrinking – working as a team, developing successful, long term, strategic relationships are positive ideas to our community. Alberta Chinese Canadian Friendship Association is looking for volunteers for a variety of positions, sponsorships and community partnerships. If you have any questions, please contact or phone: 403-998-2436 Maggie Chen. Visit the website at


About Propellus

Propellus is a non-profit organization that has been empowering organizations since 1955. Through a dynamic range of consulting, training and member services, it helps organizations envision and realize new paths, practices and possibilities. Propellus guides, mentors and educates clients, arming them with tools and resources to help boost organizational effectiveness. Propellus strengthens organizations; in doing so, it leads the way toward building thriving communities.
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