From assisting with leisure and lifestyle activities to transporting residents, helping in the garden or even administration, volunteers play an integral role at Uniting AgeWell, making a positive difference to the lives of the people it supports.
Like 94-year-old Geelong resident Irene Herviou, who celebrates 25 years of volunteering with the Uniting AgeWell Kalkee Community this year.
Ms Herviou has given her time and skills to a number of programs, including pastoral care and assisting in the Kalkee Op Shop.
Or John Pittman, who received a Volunteer Recognition Award from Launceston City Council on Tuesday, 10 May.
“I really enjoy helping others and knowing the difference I can make in the residents’ lives through simple activities such as organising footy tipping, Melbourne Cup sweeps, bingos and lawn bowls,” says Mr Pittman.
“The residents also really appreciate assistance with everyday tasks such as helping them out with their smartphones, changing their watch batteries and holding simple conversations.”
Uniting AgeWell Strathdon Community Lifestyle Coordinator Matt Daley says each volunteer has strengths and passions they can bring to enhance the lives and wellbeing of Uniting AgeWell clients.
“Volunteers give us the opportunity to enhance the range of activities we can offer our clients”, he says.
“Our volunteers’ life experiences all differ, therefore the opportunities are huge.
“They come from all backgrounds and age groups, and assist in a variety of ways, with many going above and beyond their expectations.
“They range from primary and secondary school students to retirees looking to give back to the community.
“We also facilitate intergenerational programs with local schools, giving students the opportunity to understand older people with many students developing strong bonds with our residents.”
Volunteers across Uniting AgeWell were recognised over the week with a certificate of appreciation at their respective communities.