Volunteering is about participation – participation in our community that has enduring impact. We see this in the stories we shared with you, and the many stories shared during this week by so many community organisations all around Australia.
In these stories, we hear that people’s first volunteering experience was so positive and meaningful, setting them on a lifetime commitment of volunteering. We witness that meaningful volunteering is as much about our capacity to receive and as well as to give. We know that for each story of a volunteer shared this week, there are 100s of other volunteers quietly making an impact. Their family, friends and community bear witness to the care, energy, and dedication they bring to their participation in community life.
So many of our community organisations rely on volunteers to bring what so many vulnerable people in the community need: meals, clothing, companionship, friendship, purpose and laughter. All the human needs met by millions of volunteers. And COVID has brought to the fore the enormity of the impact of volunteers. Volunteers are our essential workers. And this week is one of many where we say “Thank You”.
As we begin to emerge from the constraints of COVID social restrictions, I thought I’d share with you an unusual and human COVID-y thing that Volunteer West’s bookkeeper’s husband has done. As a hairdresser, he decided to experiment with colouring his dog’s eyebrows! Here’s to finding a dose of purpose and laughter where we can.