National Volunteer Week Kicks Off
9 May 2011 at 5:47 pm
National Volunteer Week has kicked off with an official launch in Canberra to recognise the contributions of more than 5 million Australian volunteers.
National Volunteer Week (NVW) is the largest celebration of volunteers and volunteerism in Australia, and provides an opportunity to highlight the role volunteers play in Australian communities and to say thank you to the more than 5 million Australians who volunteer each year, according to the peak body Volunteering Australia.
2011 has so far seen some very high profile volunteering efforts, such as cleanup and recovery efforts in flood ravaged Queensland, which saw volunteers attract national attention and praise – and 2011 also marks the United Nations International Year of the Volunteer plus 10 (IVY+10).
National Volunteer Week shares the theme of IVY+10, Inspiring the Volunteer in You, which aims to encourage more people to volunteer.
Volunteering Australia CEO, Cary Pedicini, has called on volunteers who stepped up to assist with recent high profile disasters to think about committing for the long term.
Pedicini says while there have been many benefits of spontaneous volunteering with recent significant events around Australia, it is important to ensure as many spontaneous volunteers as possible become long term volunteers to enable the building of resilient communities.
He says a dynamic volunteering community is the basis of a strong, socially inclusive society.
Pedicini says Volunteering Australia calls on all Australians to step up to the plate and make a long term commitment so that they are ready to assist in their communities when needed.
He says volunteers should be trained and supported so that they can respond safely and efficiently and communities with a prepared volunteer network will be in a better position to support themselves if required.
He says Volunteering Australia’s volunteer matching website, govolunteer.com.au is an excellent starting point for people looking for volunteering opportunities with more than 12,000 volunteering positions listed.
The Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and NAB are this years’ National Volunteer Week sponsors.