Celebrate National Volunteer Week (20 – 26 May)
To celebrate the great work volunteers do for our communities, this week the nation and The Benevolent Society is celebrating National Volunteer Week.
The Benevolent Society have approximately 400 registered volunteers that can get involved in client or professional services volunteering; and corporate volunteering.
Client services may involve volunteers supporting children and families at one of our early years centres or young mums, helping people with a disability by providing social support or pitching in on community events; and aging Australians with meal deliveries and raising spirits with home visits.
When pro-bono projects arise, The Benevolent Society look for assistance across writing, Human Resources, legal, marketing, finance, research and other professional services; and teams of corporate volunteers can pitch in to maintain gardens, take older people on outings and host parties for kids in need.
Anne Van Trienen is one of our volunteers on the Northern Beaches for Meals On Wheels
Anne's committed to delivering meals to older clients up to five hours a week, every Wednesday and Friday. Volunteering provides many benefits for the person volunteering and the clients they support. Anne said: “Being a volunteer makes you realise how many people need help in their daily lives. Even though my home visits are a small part of the client’s day, they really appreciate having a chat and giggle.”
“Home visits allow me to look out for the client and I can report back to Meals On Wheels if I have any concerns about a client’s wellbeing,” expressed Anne.
“The people at The Benevolent Society are so lovely to work with and I’ve made amazing friends with other volunteers. I love the social aspect of volunteering as you get to meet a lot of people that you wouldn’t normally meet,” said Anne.
Volunteering provides an outlet for exploration and development of interests. “One of the challenges I had when I started was navigating my area. I now know my surrounding suburbs and feel more confident getting around. And I also volunteer once a month to do gardening at a local cemetery.”
Milly Wallace is a Volunteer Coordinator for Meals On Wheels on the Northern Beaches. She’s aiming to thank all of her volunteers by hosting several BBQs during the week, holding a free information session run by the Health Promotion Service for Older People on Healthy Brian Ageing; and giving a small gift for each volunteer.
"Being a volunteer makes you realise how many people need help in their daily lives."
The Northern Beaches Meals On Wheels service have around 500 clients and 150 volunteers. They deliver meals five days a week to people over 65 years old and people with a disability living in the community. They’re also about to start a pilot program ‘Meal Mates’ where the volunteer has lunch with the client once a week, rather than just delivering the meal.
If you’re interested to join a volunteer program or know someone who would benefit, ask them to get in touch or call us on 1800 236 726.