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"My name is Maria Riascos, I’m from Santa Marta, Colombia. I came to Canada 7 years ago and in 2018 I became a Canadian Citizen. I speak Spanish and English. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Spanish and Communications from Universidad de Pamplona in Colombia, and also I have an Immigration Consultant Diploma from CDI College in Mississauga.

I work with the YMCA Childcare, Before and After School program and since March 13th I’ve been at home due to the Covid-19 Pandemic. And every Monday I volunteer at the Niagara Folk Arts Multicultural Centre in St. Catharines. I started volunteering with the Centre last November with the Way-Finding team. I remember when I started, Jillien had this wonderful project almost done and she asked me if I wanted to be part of it, and without a doubt I said yes, so this is how my journey volunteering with the Centre began. I also had the opportunity to help with the Settlement Department for few weeks which I also enjoyed. Now because of the pandemic situation, I have been helping with the Centre doing some Spanish translations.

Something I really love about volunteering at the Multicultural Centre is the nice and warm environment between all staff, volunteers and people that comes every day to the Centre, and I have the opportunity to meet and help people from different parts of the world.

I’m very grateful for my family, friends and people that I have met since I came to Canada and I’m also grateful for having the opportunity to do what I really like and enjoy which is helping others."

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