Lily volunteers at the Tax Clinic and she shares her story from receiving help to offering help. She came to Canada in 2010 and had few friends here. She encountered difficulties in coping with the new environment and studies, thus her depression worsened and she required medication and counselling. Her life turned around when she became a Christian and started to attend Toronto Christian Community Church regularly. She participated in various activities and also applied to use the free tax services at TCCC where she met the coordinator Amy. The following year, Amy invited Lily to volunteer as well. She was hesitant, but with Amy’s encouragement, she volunteered as a receptionist and greeted many people. As clients waited for their appointments or for their tax returns to be filed, she would use that opportunity to practice her English and communication skills. Her confidence increased overtime. Although the clients visit only once a year, they remembered the kind hospitality, and they would welcome each other warmly when they meet again. The valuable friendships she has built with the clients give her great incentive to continue volunteering. She had previously benefited from the Tax Clinic, and she now eagerly wishes to reciprocate her support to the clients. To Lily, volunteering is very rewarding as she received many rewards including building her self-confidence and reaching her potential. Most importantly, she learned that she can contribute to the community. Although Lily lives far from the Centre, she is happy and never hesitates to support the clinic during each tax season. She has been volunteering for five years, and it is her wish to continue serving the community here.

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