International volunteer day 2017
Our band of enthusiastic volunteers bring a wide range of talents and make a huge difference to our services.
Sarah is one such example of a person who has been giving willingly of her time. Not only is a fan of live music and local bands, eats out as often as she can and attends everything promoting female empowerment.
She is also a volunteer with the Food for My Life program at McAuley House.
Sarah starts her volunteering day by discussing the weekly menu with the program facilitator and then preparing a fruit platter for residents to pick from as part of an effort to encourage healthier eating.
‘Monday lunch is usually a frittata and salad. Lunch time is 1pm and after that, there’s an opportunity to sit and chat. It is one of my favourite parts
of volunteering. The atmosphere in the kitchen is very casual and welcoming so we often have women coming up for a chat,' says Sarah.
'There’s another woman who will often sit up at the bench before lunch and talk to me about all kinds of things from our favorite animal videos, to the type of food her dad cooks. There is a real sense of hospitality and community in the kitchen and I really love that.’
Sarah helps plan the weekly menu based on nutrition and food availability, but also on requests from the McAuley House residents. Special food requests and self catering have increased since the new McAuley House has opened.
Sarah says the only part of volunteering that makes her sad is hearing some of the stories that have led to women needing McAuley’s services. ‘The trauma and anguish that they’ve had to endure in their lifetimes is truly heartbreaking, but witnessing women’s strength and how they’re overcoming adversity is incredibly inspiring.’
Sarah encourages anyone interested in volunteering for McAuley to give it a go. ‘I would definitely recommend volunteering at McAuley to anyone who wants to help make a difference to the lives of women and children in need. Since my first day I have been made to feel very welcome by all of the staff at McAuley House. I truly believe in everything that McAuley stands for and I enjoy every day that I spend there.
Interested in knowing more about volunteering with us?
McAuley Community Services has a wide range of opportunities for people who can spare three to four hours a week or fortnightly. We can accommodate business/school hours, weekends, and after hours.
You could help at the crisis centre, in the cooking program, with reception and administration duties, or teaching life skills or self care. We are also looking for somebody who has the flexibility for ad hoc support and driving women to appointments, or helping them move into new accommodation.
More information: Volunteer with us