One in Three West Australians Volunteer
15 May 2014 at 9:18 am
One in three West Australians donate their time and effort to volunteer work, according to new figures released as part of National Volunteer Week.
State figures show that 1,691,800 West Australians volunteered over the past 12 months and Western Australia is home to 16,000 volunteering organisations.
|Jean Burling, 68, is one of WA’s longest serving volunteers with Surf Life Saving WA since 1957|
WA Seniors and Volunteering Minister Tony Simpson said volunteering is most common among people in their early 40s and late 50s,with 43 per cent of people aged 35 to 44 volunteering and 44 per cent of people aged 55 to 64 volunteering.
He said the rate of involvement in volunteering was the same among men and women, with 34.9 per cent of both genders lending a hand.
The WA Liberal National Government has sponsored National Volunteer Week with a $53,000 grant towards local events.
Volunteers who have clocked up half a century with the same organisation are also being recognised with 50 year badges.
The recent State Government provided $1.46million to support volunteering opportunities across the State.
National Volunteer Week is celebrating its 25th anniversary and comes at a time of uncertainty in Federal funding for peak bodies and volunteer agencies.
The Federal Budget indicated that Volunteer Management Program (VMP) grants, which are due to expire on 30 June, will be extended by six months as an interim measure, with grant recipients and other eligible organisations invited to apply for future funding.
Volunteering Australia said yesterday it was anxiously awaiting confirmation from the Department of Social Services about the specific details of the interim 6 month extension of grant funding to the majority of Not for Profit service providers, including Volunteer Resource Centres and National and State Volunteering peaks.
“The Department has indicated that it will be communicating with organisations very soon to confirm the extensions and outline the proposed new arrangements. We know that Volunteering Australia is not alone in wanting to end the uncertainty about future funding,” CEO of Volunteering Australia Brett Williamson said.
“The ongoing uncertainty has seriously impacted on services planning and resourcing, particularly the retention of key staff within the broader Not for Profit sector.