During my recovery time, I have received a lot of assistance from my family in accompanying me to appointments, and on minor shopping excursions. It’s sharpened my awareness of my fellow strugglers.


I found myself venturing out shopping by myself this week. It’s 6 weeks after major surgery and I was feeling alternately: independent and brave; tired and vulnerable ..and, at times, wondering why I had even thought I could do it.


While shopping I met two interesting people:

Firstly, a granny got off of DARTS in her electric wheelchair and parked herself in front of the shopping baskets and sales flyers. I asked if she needed any assistance, and she asked me to hand her a flyer. I voiced my curiosity about how she was planning to manage her shopping and she proudly said: “I’m meeting my daughter”.

Secondly, I overheard an elderly man asking a store employee where the nightshirts were. She informed him that they didn’t carry them anymore. Being the nosey parker that I am, I asked “when was the last time you saw a nightshirt in a store?” And he admitted that he had never shopped for clothes. He was a widower and his wife had always taken care of the shopping. We parted with him quipping: “I guess I’ll just have to sleep naked”.


So, being a childless older woman, these chance encounters got me to thinking about some of the shopping support services that are out there, both paid and volunteer.


Individual Volunteering at Wesley Urban Ministries

Shopping by Bus – Hamilton or Burlington

  • Volunteers will support with mobility on and off the bus and in the grocery store as needed, and will provide friendly and attentive communication with clients (mostly older adults)
  • 18 years or older
  • 2-3 hour shifts available (depending on location)
  • Locations available:
    • Hamilton: Fortinos, 50 Dundurn St. and No Frills, 438 Main St.
    • Burlington: Fortinos, 1059 Plains Road East and No Frills, 571 Brant St.


Check out other volunteer opportunities at Wesley Urban Ministries