In Australia, there are over 6 million people volunteering annually, who represent 36% of the adult population. From 1995 to 2010, the estimated number of volunteers in Australia doubled, which indicates there’s no shortage of organisations warmly welcoming the assistance of their volunteers. Today we caught up with volunteer, Bruce Higgins. This is Bruce’s story…
1. Which organisation do you volunteer for and why?
Adssi HomeLiving Australia, a not-for-profit organisation providing home care services to frail aged and people with a disability.
Through my experience as a carer for both my parents, I developed a strong understanding of the isolation that can occur for people as they age. I also experienced the challenges faced by carers.I volunteer with them because I strongly believe it’s important to help people stay living in their own home, primarily frail aged and people with a disability. This enables them to retain their sense of community and independence which can be lost if you move into residential care.
2. How long have you volunteered for? What attracted you to volunteering and what has kept you coming back?
I’ve been volunteering for over 2 years and I continue to do it because I get to see the difference myself and other volunteers make in the day to day lives of our clients.
3. Describe your volunteer role and what you do each time you help out – do you do the same thing each time you volunteer, or something different each time?
I have various responsibilities including administration, customer service, accompanying clients on social outings and the Safe Access and Eco Garden (SAEG) project. The SAEG project transforms clients gardens to make them safer (reducing falls risks etc) and more manageable, lower maintenance and generally more accessible, reducing a lot of worry for our clients.
4. What advice would you offer to other people considering volunteering?
Just do it! Even a few hours a week can make a difference in someone’s life. There are so many ways you can help out by volunteering at Adssi HomeLiving Australia.
About Bruce: Before my retirement a few years ago, I worked with the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and the public service. This took me all over New South Wales and I held roles in customer service and administration. Volunteering allows me to keep my mind and body active and allows me to interact with both colleagues and clients, keeping me engaged with my local community.
About Adssi HomeLiving Australia: Adssi HomeLiving is a not-for-profit organisation that helps frail aged and people with a disability to stay living in their own home longer. They help by providing assistance with personal care, domestic assistance, transport, home modifications, as well as rehabilitation through occupational therapy and lawns and gardens. Check out their website, www.adssihomeliving.com.au
for more info.