Helping change our communities for the better

Helping hand: Events like Clean Up Australia Day and Plant A Tree Day can be great fun and are a great way to start making a difference. Photo: Shutterstock.
Helping hand: Events like Clean Up Australia Day and Plant A Tree Day can be great fun and are a great way to start making a difference. Photo: Shutterstock.

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Give a little, change a lot is the official theme of this year’s National Volunteer Week.

From May 21 to 27 thousands of events will be held across the country to say thank you to the six million Australians who unselfishly volunteer their time. 

Founded in 1997 and now Australia’s peak body for volunteering, Volunteering Australia chose this years theme as recognition for the millions of volunteers who make a profound impact in their communities and on society.

National Volunteer Week celebrates their generous contributions and includes breakfasts, morning and afternoon teas, and luncheons, along with many local award ceremonies.

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Volunteering is a tower of strength in our communities with 5.8 million Australians or 31 per cent of the population volunteering, making an estimated annual contribution of $290 billion to our economic and social good.

Volunteers and the work they do is a part of every local community including education, health, the arts, emergency services, sport and recreation, the environment, and of course humanity services.

While volunteering is most beneficial to society through its outcomes and achievement of goals, it can also have positive outcomes to both individuals and organisations alike.

Benefits include being good for your mind and body, and can develop your professional skills, advancing your career.

Volunteering also brings fun and fulfilment to your life and help you build networks and friendships.