In a population of some 24 million, a staggering 25 per cent – or a shade over 6 million – Australians volunteer their time for one cause or another. That’s a most heartening figure and testament to the enormous generosity and community-mindedness of the average Aussie.
It’s also something we at NECH know only too well, where our volunteers have long made such vital contributions to the well-being of both the hospital and aged care facility.
There are those who donate thousands of hours each year to provide wonderful support, comfort and assistance to patients, residents, their families and visitors, whether carrying out concierge and other service-related duties such as escorting patients to their rooms and taking meal orders; engaging with aged care residents in outings, games and the like; or attending to outdoor activities such as gardening, planting trees and feeding the birds.
Our dedicated Hospital Auxiliary also work tirelessly to raise funds by setting up trading tables, arranging shopping centre barbeques and hosting quiz nights – and using the proceeds to purchase important equipment and furnishings for the hospital.
Let’s not forget that other vital band of volunteers: the incredibly hardworking members of our Board who magnanimously give of their time and considerable skills to help with the governance of the organisation, sit on many after-hours committees and contribute to the well-being of the community.
We are most grateful to all our volunteers and it was our privilege in late May to pause, celebrate National Volunteer Week and honour the particularly pertinent theme of “Give a little. Change a lot”.
The highlight of our activities during the week of 21 to 27 May was a volunteers’ lunch and service awards ceremony attended by 34 volunteers, seven of whom were recognised for their long service and presented with a certificate and a badge.
Board member Michael Auciello and Board Chairman John Capaldo, along with Robert Chumley and Helen Hassold, were all honoured for 10 years of service while Lynne Hartshorne and Board member and immediate past Board Chairman Dr Richard Johnson were acknowledged for 15 years of charitable endeavours.
The biggest round of applause was reserved for Dawn Burns, who has chalked up an impressive 20 years as a North Eastern Community Hospital volunteer.
One of the most heartening messages to come from our volunteers was that, as a person, they all felt that by helping others, they were not only improving their own well-being but gaining valuable new skills and experiences and boosting their confidence.
If you would like to give a little of your time and, in return, make a profound impact in your community and on society, our Manager of People and Culture, Christine Toffoli, would love to hear from you. She’s just a call away on 8366 8292.
If you would like to become a member of our Hospital Auxiliary, please contact Helen Wadham. Mobile: 0402 606 847 – Home: 8336 3030 – Email: firstname.lastname@example.org