This week is National Volunteer Week (NVW), which is Australia’s largest annual celebration of volunteering. It aims to celebrate those who volunteer to care for their society and local communities, and champion the cause of volunteering at large.
This year’s theme, Better Together, highlights one of the key reasons we care about championing volunteering at CCNB. We know that both our volunteers, and those who they care for, create opportunities for better living together, as they regularly contribute to the lives of one another.
We think this should be the mindset of everyone, for their wellbeing and personal growth. At different stages of life there are times we’ve been supported and times where we should view ourselves as having the privilege of being able to ‘give back’. When we volunteer we become the change we hope to see in our world, treat others the way we’d like to be treated, and make a difference that enables us and others to lead happier lives.
At CCNB, we think that this focus on being Better Together in community is better for everyone, though its power is sometimes overlooked. Studies show that community has powerful benefits. Did you know that…
- Without social support people are 5 times more likely to experience mental illness.*
- “Feeling valued and comfortable socially can prevent and reduce feelings of isolation, anxiety, depression and more.”*
These statistics highlight the basic knowledge we all gain when isolated, that feeling disconnected can lead to poor health and less positive outcomes for our lives. We all need social connection and sometimes we also need help to assist us in our daily living, especially when our circumstances change due to bad health or immobility.
At CCNB, we’re proud to highlight various initiatives that continue to contribute to the cause of helping those in need locally through volunteering. We’re also very privileged to have a wonderful team of volunteers across our organisation who’s work we deeply appreciate as they help those in our communities. The reason we highlight these programs is also to encourage more people to get involved.
Our volunteer program trains and sends volunteers out into the community to help with initiatives, including: visiting, shopping (both accompanied and unaccompanied), meeting for walks, helping out with IT “challenges”, meeting up for lunch or coffee, phoning, face timing, writing letters, taking to appointments, gardening, delivering meals and more.
For example, in March 175 volunteers managed to connect with others. In some of the ways mentioned above, these volunteers made approximately 490 connections with vulnerable people in our community – a massive effort considering how many people have been affected by COVID-19 or were in isolation due to a close contact.
Do you have any friends or relatives that may be interested in volunteering? If so, it would be amazing if you could pass some information on about how to become a volunteer. Click here to find out more. If you sign up soon you also might be invited to our volunteer movie night!
Our Connected Café’s are small groups who meet up for a coffee and conversation to create connections in our community. Anyone is welcome to join our Connected Café groups for a coffee and a friendly chat.
If you would like to volunteer to start one up in your own suburb, please let us know and we would love to support you to kick-start it! Our goal is to have Connected Cafes all throughout the Northern Beaches.
Here’s a list of our current Connected Café’s:
Our Belong Club events are aimed at improving capacity, reducing isolation and loneliness, and increasing connection in our communities.
We’re always on the lookout for locals with skills to share who think they could run an event to inspire people locally. Alternatively, we’d love you to participate as a guest in any events that interest you. Click here to find out more.
Give Where you Live
Community Capital Foundation is a CCNB initiative focussed on fundraising community development initiatives.
Give Where you Live is the title of a workshop they run to help participants identify their passions and give their time, treasure, talent and ties to the social issues they care about.
To find out more, click here.
One way to keep on the lookout for ways to benefit your community by participating in locally run programs is to follow us on social media. We’re always creating new ways to make local change. To stay up to date follow us on social media or visit our website for more information about our programs at ccnb.com.au.