Barbara and Jeannette’s contribution has seen them nominated and recognised by an Australian Government Volunteer Award. Here is their story:
It is with their generosity of time and effort that ECH can deliver activities such as art, crafts, music, cooking and recreational pursuits such as indoor bowls. And it is as beneficial for the volunteers as it is for the recipients – they get just as much joy out of the experience.
So say ECH volunteers Barbara and Jeannette.
A few years after Barbara moved into her unit at ECH Lewis Court, in 2007, she wanted to give something back.
“With ECH, I’m very grateful for being accepted into the village and I felt
I wanted to do something for ECH because they have done so much for me”
Barbara joined a program, where for two years she took clients out for a weekly coffee or walk at the beach, providing them with company and a friendly face.
Four years ago, she became involved in the weekly activities at the Cumberland Park Community Centre – or life, and I think if you’re reasonably lucky in life, you should give back to the community. Being at The Cumby every week has become part of my routine, it feels like a family atmosphere,” she says.
Just like Barbara, Jeannette feels a sense of purpose and community spirit when she volunteers for the Life Stories as it is affectionately known as The Cumby – welcoming people, operating the mini op shop and organising fashion parades four times a year using donated clothing.
Barbara couldn’t be happier giving her time to help others.
“I’ve been volunteering on and off for most of my married life, and I think if you’re reasonably lucky in life, you should give back to the community. Being at The Cumby every week has become part of my routine, it feels like a family atmosphere,” she says.
Just like Barbara, Jeannette feels a sense of purpose and community spirit when she volunteers for the Life Stories Project, an activity where she is linked with an ECH client to learn about their life in order to write a biography.
“Often volunteers are thanked for their time and energy and while we appreciate those thanks, the ability to engage with others, gain experience in a different field and have a sense of purpose and fulfilment while making a meaningful contribution can’t be measured” says Jeannette.
Because of their contribution, the pair was nominated by ECH and recognised with a volunteering award at a recent morning tea hosted by Federal Member for Adelaide Steve Georganas.
Jeannette says: “I was touched to be recognised even though I hadn’t been volunteering for long; there are so many deserving people who do a lot through their ECH volunteering.”
Barbara says: “I advise anyone thinking about volunteering just to give it a go. If you start, you soon find out how rewarding it really is.”
To learn more about volunteering or view our available opportunities, visit ech.asn.au/volunteering
Posted: September 15, 2023