Retirement living consultant Wendy Upton was recognized by the City of Maple Ridge for her commitment to seniors in the community.
She recently received a Municipal Advisory Committee on Accessibility and Inclusiveness (MACAI) award for her work at Chartwell Willow Retirement Residence, and all she has done outside her nine-to-five.
Upton is known as a go-to resource and leader for community organizations helping seniors.
The city, when announcing award, noted she goes over and above on a daily basis to help less fortunate seniors in the community and thanked her for making a difference in the lives of so many.
Before joining Chartwell Willow 10 years ago, Upton worked in the travel industry for many years.
She was racking her brain for something new to pursue when her husband pointed out what was obvious to him.
“I had to go to the lab for tests and there was a little lady there, and she was struggling to get her walker out of the back of her car,” Upton said. “I went over, and I helped her with it, and walked in with her.
“Once I left the building my husband said to me, ‘I’ve figured out what job you need to do, because you can’t pass a senior without helping them. You need to figure out something to do that involves working with seniors.’”
Upton said her husband was right, and she said she soon discovered her calling.
Some of her many contributions include redirecting used medical equipment to be refurbished and provided to those who would not be able to afford to buy their own.
Upton also sponsors a recipient of the Haney Farmers Market’s Nutritional Coupon Program throughout the year. As president of Ridge Meadows Hospice Society, she presides over the annual butterfly release fundraiser; and she also sits on the Seniors Network Board of Directors.
“It fills my heart working with the seniors here at Chartwell Willow, and in the community,” Upton said.
“I never saw myself as a volunteer person, but doing community outreach has given me a whole different perspective in life.
‘To be able to give back, and see a senior light up when you can be of help to them, is very rewarding.”
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