Vinnies Volunteers Changing Communities and Lives
Volunteers are the backbone of who we are at Vinnies. We are so thankful to all 14,000 members and volunteers who go above and beyond to give their time supporting their local communities across NSW.
National Volunteer Week takes place annually to celebrate the generous contribution of volunteers throughout Australia. The theme for this year Changing Communities. Changing Lives. reflects the true life-changing impact that a volunteer can have for those they help their community.
We’d love to introduce some of the amazing people that make Vinnies community support and services possible.
“It’s incredibly rewarding when something ‘clicks’ with a student. It’s nice being able to contribute to something so important.”
Since 2017, James has helped new arrivals through the refugee resettlement and homework help programs in Wagga Wagga, currently tutoring at two local primary schools in the area.
“I enjoy helping others and knowing I am making a difference to someone’s life.”
For 70 years Pat has been a member and volunteer with our St Joseph’s Conference in Condobolin. A self-described “people person”, the connections that come with visiting and getting to share a laugh with people keep Pat feeling young at heart.
“I can have a conversation with anyone and learn about their life. I love hearing about their ambitions and dreams – that makes me smile.”
As secretary of the St Sebastian Youth Conference in Wagga Wagga, Marina sees volunteering with Vinnies as a way to give back to her local community, giving her time at the local homework program for just over a year.
“Through Vinnies I’m able to give back, by supporting and caring for the people I know, the ones I’ve met in the past ten years and those new faces I meet each day I volunteer.”
Returning to her hometown in retirement, Terrie has been a fixture of the Vinnies Shop in Armidale for the past seven years. Assisting people with their purchases and ensuring volunteers are looked after, she most enjoys the chance to be part of the local community.
“So many of our friends on the street don’t need food as much as they need human contact – and I love giving it.”
For the past 18 years, Jane has been feeding some of Sydney’s most disadvantaged as part of the Vinnies Night Patrol Van. Working alongside people of all ages to prepare meals for those in need, the connections she has made over the years with ‘regulars’ are just as comforting as the food provided.
Here’s our NSW CEO, Jack de Groot, with a special message for all our dedicated members and volunteers.
National Volunteer Week takes place from Monday 18 May – Sunday 24 May.