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Volunteering Tasmania welcomes findings into Australia’s Aged Care Workforce

In 2016 Volunteering Tasmania gave evidence at the Senate Inquiry into the Aged Care Workforce. Our submission highlighted the importance of volunteering in the aged care sector, and the valuable role that volunteers play.

We particularly raised concerns that volunteering was excluded from the Senate Committee’s Terms of Reference, when volunteers play such a critical role to the future of this workforce.

On June 20, 2017 the Senate Committee handed down its findings into the Aged Care Workforce. Volunteering Tasmania welcomes the findings, and notes two key recommendations:

  • The aged care workforce strategy task-force be composed of representatives of service providers, workforce groups, including nurses, care workers/personal care attendants, medical and allied health professionals, and others, and representatives of consumers and volunteers. Representatives of workers, care providers and consumers from regional and remote areas should also be included.
  • The aged care workforce strategy consider the role of informal carers and volunteers in the aged care sector, with particular focus on the impacts of both the introduction of consumer directed care and the projected ageing and reduction in these groups.

This is a fantastic step in acknowledging the vital contribution our volunteer workforce plays in the aged care landscape.

A copy of the committee’s report can be accessed on the committee’s website here.

Symposium Spotlights Volunteer Safety – 27 July 2017

Mental anguish, physical harm or negative social implications are not usually the first things that spring to mind when you think about the altruistic act of volunteering.

For many that donate their time to worthy causes, volunteering is a hugely rewarding endeavour. However, in helping make someone, or something’s life better, it’s essential that the quality of the volunteer’s health is not adversely impacted.

Volunteering Tasmania, our island’s peak body for volunteering, will delve into this topic next week at the 2017 Volunteering Symposium.

Alison Lai, chief executive officer of Volunteering Tasmania says the Symposium will give volunteers, and the people that work alongside them, the opportunity to discuss these issues.

“Tasmanian’s are incredibly generous with the amount of time they give to our community, and their willingness to go above and beyond is unquestionable,” Alison said.

“Communities all across our island depend on volunteers and it’s hard to imagine a world without them. So it’s imperative that we keep volunteers safe.

“Volunteer safety comes in different forms, ranging from keeping them safe from physical dangers such as rough seas or bushfires, to helping them maintain safe and healthy relationships with those they might befriend, or provide companionship to.

“It’s also imperative that volunteers are provided with robust and reliable support systems to help them recover from experiences that may be traumatic, whether that be seeing people at their most vulnerable, or any other type of crisis event.

“We hope that attendees will leave the Symposium feeling informed and armed with new insights into how other organisations are addressing volunteer safety.”

With a stellar line up of expert panel membersSymposium Web Header 1, the Symposium will feature presentations from Lois Berry of North West Hospice Care, Ian Fullagar of Surf Life Saving Australia and Michael Bruhn of Sea Shepherd Tasmania.

The Symposium will also feature a light-hearted yet thought provoking debate around the statement ‘Young people don’t like volunteering’.

Alison said that she was looking forward to some of Tasmania’s well-known community members debating this current hot topic in volunteering.

“For the affirmative we will have ABC radio presenter Chris Wisbey, Peter West from the RSPCA and Anneliese Smith who is known for her work with the Migrant Resource Centre,” she said.

“They’ve got their work cut out for them, up against Emily Briffa of the successful Hamlet Social Enterprise, Kate Cashman from The Breath Between and Alex McKenzie from Mobart Mo Bros (Movember Foundation).

“It’s going to be wonderful community event, delivered by our community.”

The Symposium will be held on Thursday 27 July from 1-4pm, at the Stanley Burbury Theatre, University of Tasmania’s Hobart campus. Special rates for Volunteering Tasmania members.

More information can be found on Eventbrite, sorry no door sales.

To download the Volunteering Symposium flyer, click here.

3 great reasons to become a Member of Volunteering Tasmania

1 – Your support for Volunteering Tasmania is support for volunteering

Volunteering Tasmania is the Peak body for volunteering. We advocate for volunteering, to make sure decision-makers hear your voice. We also research volunteering so that you know our information is up-to-date and relevant. Your Membership supports volunteers, those who work with volunteers, and in turn, the whole Tasmanian community.

Become a Member today.

 

2 – Help us to deliver our awesome free services

Volunteering Tasmania assists volunteers and volunteering in many ways: We help to recruit volunteers through online and face-to-face referrals, we provide training, we facilitate meetings where experts in the sector share best practice ideas, we act as a ‘help-desk’ for issues and queries, we match volunteers in emergency recovery, and much much more.

All this is provided to the sector free of charge, and we strive to help everyone who comes to us for assistance and advice.

However we need your help to keep up our great work! Your Membership supports volunteers, those who work with volunteers, and in turn, the whole Tasmanian community.

Become a Member today.

 

3 – Members get extra special treatment

Here at Volunteering Tasmania we provide the best service possible to everyone who needs it, regardless of Membership status. However, we have worked hard to build some Member Exclusive benefits to give people who support us through Membership extra special bonus value.

In addition to our free-of-charge services like online and face-to-face referral services, volunteer management support, and the Tasmanian Volunteering Awards; our Members can enjoy a range of benefits such as active promotion of volunteer vacancies, use of our communications channels to highlight their special events, and access to best-practice policy and procedures templates via our Members Only webpage.

Find out about all the benefits, and become a Member today.

Launch of ‘Stakeholder Survey’ for continuous improvement feedback

As the peak body for volunteering in Tasmania, our mission is to:

Create an environment which promotes and sustains effective volunteerism.

Our strategic plan is based around five key themes:

  1. Volunteer Engagement
  2. Volunteer Sector Development
  3. Policy and Advocacy
  4. Research
  5. Organisational Strength.

Each of these themes has a rationale and a list of outcomes to be achieved.  One of the outcomes listed under (5)  is to:

  • Apply Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) processes 

This means we need to make sure we always check what we are doing, to see if we could do it better.  To help with this, we regularly ask our stakeholders for their thoughts, opinions and experiences with Volunteering Tasmania.  This helps us find out how we have been doing, and also lets us ask you what is needed from us in the future.

Alison Lai, CEO of Volunteering Tasmania, would like to invite all stakeholders to complete this years’ annual Stakeholder Survey.

To make it as short as possible, the survey has been split into two:

  1. One for volunteers
  2. One for people who are employed by a Volunteer Involving Organisation

Please click on the survey link most suited to you. If you wear ‘two hats’ and you are a volunteer AND you work for a Volunteer Involving Organisation, we would be delighted if you completed both surveys.

Each survey is short, simple and can be completed anonymously if you wish.

As an added incentive, every survey that is completed in full before Friday, June 30 2017 will be entered into a prize draw for $100 gift voucher (one entry per person per survey and you’ll need to provide us with your contact details at the end of the survey so we can contact you if you win).  Every fully completed entry will be allocated a number, with the winner decided by a random number generator.  More details of the prize draw are available at the end of the survey.

Thank you for taking the time to complete the survey, your feedback is extremely valuable to us.

UPDATE:  Congratulations to Jason J. for being lucky respondent number 73 in our Stakeholder Survey Free Prize Draw, drawn on July 4, 2017.  Jason came into the Hobart office and collected a Visa Card $100 gift voucher.

Petition tabled – support Volunteering Services

National Peak body Volunteering Australia has delivered a petition campaigning for ongoing funding for Volunteering Support Services.   The petition was tabled by Western Australian Senator Louise Pratt (ALP), and highlights the important role that volunteering organisations play in our communities.

Volunteering Australia’s petition asked for a commitment to continue funding for volunteer support in the Federal Government budget. A commitment for this funding is vital to the work of organisations like Volunteering Tasmania to help community groups recruit and retain volunteers.

Volunteering Tasmania congratulates Volunteering Australia for their advocacy on this important issue.

We also thank all of the Volunteering Tasmania members, our local volunteers, Managers of Volunteers and community members for their support in signing the petition.

Please keep an eye on Volunteering Tasmania’s website, E News and social media channels for updates on the petition.

Social Media Fundamentals training for NFPs – free statewide training opportunity

Volunteering Tasmania is delighted to be partnering with the Digital Ready for Business Program (Department of State Growth) to deliver their highly successful social media sessions to not for profit organisations.

With sessions to be delivered in Hobart, Launceston and Devonport, the first session will focus on Social Media Fundamentals.

Delivered by experienced digital coach and digital marketing specialist Rebecca King from Kingthing Marketing this free session will provide you with practical tips and tricks on how to get your social media to work for you.

All sessions are free and run from 6pm to 8pm.

Places are filling up fast. For more information and to register, click on the links below:

Launceston – Tuesday, 27 June

Hobart – Thursday, 29 June

Devonport – Monday, 3 July

New Skills Fund training partnership – a pathway to employment

Volunteering Tasmania is delighted to announce a new training partnership with the Ascent Training Group to provide a series of nationally recognised training sessions for volunteers, as part of a Certificate II in Community Services.

Subsidised by Skills Tasmania, this free course has flexible training hours and is specifically designed for volunteers who wish to gain skills dealing with the public in the community services sector, in particular the disability sector, but transferable for work in community organisation and care industries such as schools, libraries, aged care and personal care work.

For a complete run-down on the course and its outcomes, please download the following documents:

 

 

Invitation to Join Volunteering Tasmania Board – Expressions of Interest due by Friday 23 June

Volunteering Tasmania is seeking Expressions of Interest (EOI) from suitably experienced and skilled community members to be considered for subsequent nomination to the Volunteering Tasmania Board of Directors.

Volunteering Tasmania is the peak body for volunteering in Tasmania. It is a statewide, not for profit organisation with offices in Hobart and Launceston.

The role of the Volunteering Tasmania Board is to provide governance and strategic leadership to the organisation.

If you are interested in nominating for a position on the Board you should initially provide an Expression of Interest addressing the following points:

  1. Prior experience on Boards and Committees and/or knowledge of governance processes;
  2. Demonstrated ability to think strategically and analytically;
  3. The ability to attend meetings (currently 4 per year) and contribute to Committees and out of session discussions and decision making;
  4. Additional experience and skills you would bring to the Board.

In addition to the above attributes Volunteering Tasmania is particularly looking for people with any of the following skills and experience:

  • Partnership development
  • Government Stakeholder Relations

For more information or to obtain an information pack contact admin@volunteeringtas.org.au.

Expressions of interest close Friday 23 June 2017 and should be marked CONFIDENTIAL and addressed to:

The Chair

Volunteering Tasmania

95 – 97 Campbell Street

Hobart 7000

or admin@volunteeringtas.org.au

 

Advocating for Volunteering as a form of lifelong learning

Volunteering Tasmania recently gave feedback on a LINC Tasmania discussion paper on the value of lifelong learning.

At Volunteering Tasmania we strongly believe in the value of lifelong learning. Volunteering offers opportunities for Tasmanians to gain new skills and experiences, whilst simultaneously providing benefit to their communities.

Volunteering Tasmania believes there are strong alignments between lifelong learning, the value of volunteering and the goals of LINC Tasmania.

You can read our full submission here.

VT Advocacy: Submission to Senate Committee on National Disability Strategy

Volunteering Tasmania recently gave feedback on the National Disability Strategy 2010-2020.

The submission highlights the importance of volunteering in allowing people with disabilities to engage fully in society- socially, culturally and politically.

Volunteering Tasmania notes some of the barriers that currently exist to participation, and raised the importance of training and support for Volunteer Involving Organisations and Managers of Volunteers.

You can read the full submission here