Pam Stark has lived with Ottawa Community Housing for more than 20 years.
A single mother while her son was growing up, Pam lived on Draper Avenue, and she moved to MacLaren Street when he moved out on his own.
She said she’s loved being part of the OCH community wherever she’s lived.
Part of the reason for that is that she makes friends by offering a helping hand.
Now, Pam is moving once again. It’s going to be a fond farewell to her many neighbours and friends at MacLaren.
Pam is one of the first to pitch in and help when there’s a volunteer event or a barbecue.
I love doing it. It gets us all together, and it’s fun helping out.
One of Pam’s project was manning the “Snack Shack” at the MacLaren Towers Lounge.
During the colder months, she would offer coffees and cookies to her fellow tenants, in the summer it was juices and other things.
Pam said the idea for a canteen came from workers at Salus – an Ottawa-based charity that helps to provide supportive housing and rehabilitation services for those with mental illness.
Ottawa Community Housing agreed to provide a small budget for the snacks.
“And it grew from there,” Pam said.
Pam also helped out in July when TD Bank Volunteers came to weed garden beds and plant flowers, and earlier in the summer when staff and tenants celebrated Canada Day.
Pam uses volunteering as a way to get out and interact with the larger community as well.
She spent years working at Urban Outreach at 420 Cooper St. It’s a program that offers support for the homeless or those at risk of becoming homeless.
“It’s great, they can come in and have a shower and shave,” Pam said of the clients.
Now that she’s moving out, Pam said she wants to stay in touch with her friends at MacLaren. Pam encourages others to speak to OCH Staff about helping out in their communities – whether it be to join the tenant’s association or help out at events.