Paying it Forward: Maria Cura

Volunteer of the WeekName: Maria Cura

Current employer or place of business: Elite Care at Sylvan Park

Organization(s) I volunteer with: Parkinson’s Resources; Alzheimer’s Association; Learning Avenues Child Care Centers; East Vancouver Business Association

How I got involved: Co-chair for Sole Support Walk for Parkinson’s (Vancouver, Portland, Medford, Eugene); Committee chair for Celebrate Hope Gala for Parkinson’s; Board president for Learning Avenues Child Care Centers; Board treasurer for East Vancouver Business Association

Why I give back: Personally, I believe that we do well when we are doing good. Professionally, I love ‘cause marketing.’ It is the most influential and impactful way I have been able to make a difference in the lives of others and the greater community.

Proudest moment as a volunteer: Earlier this year, I project managed the creation and launch of a community group called Healthcare Industry People (HIP). We provide an outlet for fellow healthcare workers to support each other and gather valuable resources to help navigate stress, grief, promote wellness and learn ways to improve our workplaces and personal lives. We also have a lot of fun when we get together!

What local challenge or issue are you most passionate about? I am passionate about supporting families. Many of us live very busy lives, and it’s becoming more and more difficult to focus on family values and connection. I think this is why I love working with the elderly and children. It’s not just the child or the senior I’m supporting; I’m supporting their entire family in the process. I always look forward to the opportunity to lighten someone’s burden so that they have an opportunity to re-connect with the people they love.

Just for fun: What are your hidden talents? I can be outrageously immature if it means putting a smile on someone’s face. I’m known to give my grumpy friends random Wet Willy’s. So I suggest that a person not frown too much when around me.

“Paying it Forward: Volunteer Businessperson of the Week” is sponsored by Pacific Continental Bank.