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“Being there”, a priceless gift

Their names are Lyne, Daniel, Gaétane, Pierre and Isabelle.

Through their invaluable support, each of them holds a very special place in the heart of Mr. Plouffe, who has been a Little Brothers Great Friend for just 3 years.

” Little Brothers are my family,” he admits candidly.

For this Great Friend from the Laurentians, daily life took on a whole new color the day he let the organization and its volunteers into his life.

“I had obtained the telephone number by attending an information meeting at the residence where I lived,” he confides. “One fine morning, I decided to call, and the first person I met was Daniel, the coordinator for my region. A soul of rare greatness, that man.”

It was with Daniel, in fact, that he shared one of the most significant milestones in his recent life: his move. It was an emotionally-charged moment, and his presence was invaluable, he tells us: “He helped me put my worries away. It really gave me courage and strength. A comfort worth its weight in gold, when you’re a little too used to solitude.

Mr. Plouffe doesn’t just have kind words for Daniel. He also has them for all the other volunteers who regularly give him the gift of their time and their little attentions.

This is the case for Lyne, who visits him every week. “We talk, we take walks. It feels really good. And since I can no longer drive my car, she’s the one who drops me off at my medical appointments, for example.”

It’s a presence that Mr. Plouffe finds so warm that he recently decided to invite Lyne to dinner every Wednesday evening. It’s an initiative of which he’s very proud: “The residents find it interesting to be able to chat with her during mealtime. Inevitably, it raises awareness of the Little Brothers cause. Since then, two other volunteers like Lyne have come to visit us.

And what about his visits to the Domaine Juliette-Huot, in Oka, where people like him enjoy a few days in the great outdoors in the company of volunteers during the summer. “These stays are a breath of fresh air, a real rejuvenation. You get to share some truly wonderful moments with people who are happy to be there. It’s something that stays in your heart, that’s for sure.

For Mr. Plouffe, it’s a pure gift of life that a heavy period of loneliness has given way to such enveloping support. His gratitude is all the greater now that he knows he has the beginnings of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.

“When I was diagnosed, all the volunteers around me called to give me energy, to cheer me up, and to tell me something priceless: we’re going to be there for you:

– We’re going to be here for you.”

“These people, they give without ever asking for anything in return, purely out of a desire to sow happiness,” he concludes with emotion.

We nod in agreement, and add: out of pure affection too, Mr. Plouffe.

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