Celebrating 50 years of Volunteering
- Created on Tuesday, 01 April 2014 11:25
National Volunteer Week celebrations at Albion Park Rail signified the commencement of celebrations of 50 years of volunteering at Warrigal
This year Warrigal are celebrating 50 years of volunteering.Volunteer Week activities taking place throughout the week will be the start of the celebrations that recognise the enormous contribution that volunteers have made to the organisation.
Warrigal was founded by volunteers in the early 1960’s and they continue to provide a major component in the provision of services to residents and clients.
Originally all services and functions were provided by community volunteers. Volunteers continue to play a major role in the delivery of their services today: the guidance of the Board and much of the supplementary care and support offered is provided by the volunteers.
There are over 350 registered volunteers who provide invaluable support to Warrigal residents each year. "Our volunteers get actively involved in many activities including driving the Warrigal buses for outings, running activities such as bingo and singing for our residents, assisting at functions and fund raising for our residents" said Mark Sewell, Warrigal CEO.
"National Volunteer Week is an opportunity to thank our volunteers and recognise the essential contribution that they make to Warrigal, without them we could not provide the level of service for which we have become well known"
One of Warrigal’s long term volunteers, Brian Mackander was a member of the original Warrigal Board in 1967. Brian recalls many of the volunteering activities that he has been involved in. The activities included maintaining the original building at the top of Mt Warrigal, being appointed Warrigal’s first paymaster as well as having an active role on the Board for 47 years.
Brian held the role of Vice Chairman and Chairman throughout the 1980’s and 1990’s. "Warrigal is a great organisation and I’m really proud to have been involved in the organisation" Said brian. Brian’s wife Peggy Mackander was also a Warrigal volunteer and helped to start the first Ladies Auxiliary.
He along with many other volunteers from Warrigal will attend a Thankyou Morning Tea being held at Albion Park Rail to celebrate Volunteer Week
Warrigal’s philosophy is to support older people and provide them with the opportunity to ‘be themselves’. WE think it happens best when they are connected, happy, respected and independent. Warrigal are also strong advocates of older people experiencing fun, freedom and fitness through community activities, clubs and meaningful relationships. Forming another mutually aligned partnership with local clubs and local communities such as The Links, allow both community organisations to keep older people informed through social and recreational opportunities.
Warrigal CEO, Mark Sewell says "We know now that a majority of people living at Warrigal want to stay involved in their social clubs and groups." "Our principles of offering choice and community interaction are aligned with the ethos of the club and we are excited to be able to work with community partners such as The Links to ensure people stay well connected and achieve greater social and health outcomes. Recent studies show that overcoming isolation and inactivity are very important for older people to have great lives and allow them to have longer, better lives.
The Links General Manager, Robby Stephenson also acknowledges the common values of both organisations and the need to support and promote local lifestyle facilities such as The Links to the community. He says "The Links Shell Cove really is what All Things Golf should be! An enjoyable golf course, friendly atmosphere and a great golfing experience for those who want to play competitively and those who just enjoy a day out."
The signing of the MOU today also represents the continuation of Warrigal’s long-held association with the Shellharbour LGA. Warrigal are this year celebrating 50 years of volunteering. Warrigal was initiated by volunteers starting with the Shellharbour Lions Club back in 1964 and later assisted by the Kiama Soroptimists, Shellharbour Rotary Club, and Shellharbour Apex Club. It all started with a lease from Shellharbour Council to provide care throughout the region. Today, Warrigal not only provide care for 300 people in local residential care homes, but over 200 people live in our Shellharbour community villages and our home support clients have grown to over 90 in Shellharbour .
Given the steady growth and the enormous amount of development in the Shell Cove area, it is exciting times for both organisations. Taking into consideration the forecast that over the next fifteen (15) years the population of Shellharbour City aged 65 and over will rise by 62 per cent with Shell Cove experiencing an increase of 161% in the over 65 age group.
Warrigal is now embarking on another expansion as part of the new Shell Cove Marina on the site of the previous Shellharbour Golf Course. The development will , include a brand new residential care home complete with a community hub, which will include, dining areas, café, shop and other communal spaces for its customers, residents and the local Shell Cove community. CEO Mark Sewell believes this partnership will support and reinforce our vision – that older people will have great lives, and that we can support older people to create inspiring communities, in particular those who are living in the Shellharbour region.