Australia celebrates National Volunteer Week

By Juliano Oliveira

Initiating the National Volunteer Week, Queensland Government is making available grants of up to $500 organisations interested in hosting events and offering professional development to its volunteers.

Applications will open Sunday, May 24, on the Volunteering Queensland website – https://volunteeringqld.org.au/nvw/grants – and will close on Tuesday, 30 June.

This year, National Volunteer’s Week theme is Changing Lives, Changing Communities.

“We’re encouraging Queenslanders to share a smile with volunteers by taking a photo as part of the national smiley face wave campaign and posting it to social media with #NVW2020,” said Minister for Communities Coralee O’Rourke.

“We might not be able to see them face to face and tell them how much they are valued, but through the power of social media we can certainly take a smiley photo and let them know we are thinking of them.”

Ms O’Rourke extolled the dedication of volunteers on the frontline of the fight against COVID-19 like the Care Army.

“Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Queenslanders have been stepping up to help out – whether it’s helping in the health and medical sectors or the almost 28,500 Queenslanders who have signed up to the Care Army to help our state’s seniors,” Mrs O’Rourke said.

“Their contribution during this pandemic has been immense and it’s helped us be so successful in our fight against the virus.

“But it’s not just those fighting COVID-19 who are making a difference.

“During the devastating bushfires last year, we saw thousands of volunteers putting their lives on the line to fight those fires and support people who had been affected in their community.

“During tough times, Queenslanders do what they do best, by rolling up their sleeves and lending a helping hand for their community.

“There are more than 714,000 volunteers in Queensland and this week I want to thank each and every one of them for their hard work.”