Why I Volunteer

This week we celebrate National Volunteer Week and the theme for this year is ‘Better Together’.

Since we have come out of lockdown, it doesn’t matter where I am or who the group is, there is a common theme and discussion on the shortage of volunteers.  So I want to share why I volunteer and what you can achieve with volunteering.

The best part of volunteering is you get to choose when, where and how much time you dedicate to the role.  You can contribute to different groups that fit with the different stages of your life.  Some people will volunteer because of family connections – church groups, local sporting clubs or community centres.  Some people volunteer because of the activities that our kids are participating in – swimming, dance, athletics or drama competitions.  I’ve been there and participated in all of these groups.  Other people volunteer because of professional connections – not-for-profit boards, fundraising and mentoring roles.  There are also opportunities to volunteer for causes that are close to our hearts and that have meaningful impacts on people’s lives.

As we come out of the Covid lockdowns, everyone is looking to reconnect and re-establish our relationships.  Spending time volunteering is a great way to make new connections and feel connected to our community.  I have met some amazing people that I wouldn’t otherwise have met and I’ve made some lifelong friends through volunteering.  I have had influence and input on the development and engagement of individuals who have gone on to achieve their dreams, both personal and professional.  Some of these individuals have settled successfully into the Ballarat community and I see them doing their part through their own contributions to volunteering in the community.

Volunteering can also build our skills base.  If you’ve been out of the workforce due to lockdowns or for other reasons, it might be the opportunity you’re looking for to start rebuilding your skills and confidence.  The skills you are developing while volunteering can be transferrable.   If you think about the role you are in and ask yourself, have you been coordinating events, functions, or fundraising?  Do you enjoy these activities?  The project, staff and financial management experience might help you find work in an events space.  Maybe you’re a treasurer for a sporting club and you enjoy analysing figures and setting budgets, you could apply those skills to a bookkeeping or accounts clerk role.  I currently use my leadership skills to volunteer in sporting clubs and on Boards, but the skills also form the foundations for my professional work.  I mentor, coach and deliver training to leaders from all levels.

Volunteering develops our skills, and our connections and supports the community.  It can be challenging, but it is also very rewarding.  Together, through volunteering, we are changing communities for the better. We are, ‘Better Together’.


If you would like to get involved and donate your time through volunteering, here are a few local volunteering opportunities you can consider:


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