Congratulations Brendan McCracken – 2018 KCCS Volunteer of the Year!
The Kerrisdale Community Centre Society (KCCS) is very pleased to announce that Brendan McCracken is the recipient of the 2018 Volunteer of the Year Award.
Since 2006, Brendan has lived in Kerrisdale and has been coming to the Kerrisdale Seniors Centre for lunch. He noticed that on busy days, there would be long line-ups of diners at the hall entrance. While the kitchen staff were busy preparing and distributing the food, trays of dirty dishes were piling up in the collection carts by the entrance and sometimes overflowing to the table at one corner of the hall.
Brendan decided to help. After finishing his lunch, he took the initiative to clear the dirty dishes and bring them to the kitchen as soon as they started to accumulate. Sometimes he would stay in the kitchen to sort the dirty dishes, cutleries, cups and saucers onto large crates for the dishwater. He usually arrives daily around 11:30 a.m., enjoys his lunch, helps with the cleaning and leaves around 1:00 – 1:30 pm. If the day is not too busy, he may have a few moments to socialize briefly with his friends.
Brendan finds his volunteer duties very meaningful as they contribute to making the dining experience much more pleasurable. He has been doing them since 2009, every day from Monday to Saturday. The only time he was absent was in 2014 when he was hospitalized for four weeks. As soon as he recovered, he was back volunteering at the Seniors Centre.
In 1956, Brendan had a traffic accident in Ireland which resulted in his right leg being amputated below the knee. Shortly after, he found inspiration in Douglas Bader’s book A Legless Pilot and has never allowed his prosthetic leg to impede him from being fully engaged in life.
He is an avid cyclist and uses his electric bicycle to go everywhere, including cycling 2-3 times a year to his Prosthesis Clinic at Boundary Street and Lougheed Highway in Burnaby. He also works out 2-3 time a week at the Kerrisdale Community Centre’s Fitness Centre.