For best practice in volunteer management, this Award highlights managers of volunteers (either paid or unpaid) who embrace the National Standards for Volunteer Involvement; through effective recruiting, training, support, encouragement and recognition of volunteers.
The finalists are:
Michael Barnes – Meals on Wheels, Longford
Mike Barnes has been the Regional Coordinator and public face of Meals on Wheels in Longford for more than 20 years. He manages a team of 40 volunteers who are inspired by his strong allegiance to the Longford community. He personally recruits, trains and rosters drivers to ensure that clients always get the best service.
Mike cares deeply for the service he manages, always wanting to ensure that clients have consistently high-quality meals, and the volunteers who make it happen are respected. His unassuming and welcoming manner means volunteers feel valued. Mike leads by example and is always available for advice and help to his volunteers. He will always step in when volunteers are unable to be there.
His positivity serves as a fine example to the countless volunteers he has managed. Volunteers are inspired by his strong allegiance to his community and expectations of a high standard of behaviour.
Di Mason – Melanoma Tasmania
Di Mason is the volunteer Founder, Chair and Volunteer Coordinator for Melanoma Tasmania. After losing her mother to melanoma, Di realised there was no support group and awareness program for Tasmania, so she created one. Since 2014, the group’s activities have steadily evolved. Di’s determination to have an effective, credible melanoma support group led to the creation of a board and constitution, including partnerships with key organisations.
Today, Melanoma Tasmania not only supports families through counselling, but also provides opportunities for these same families to volunteer to advocate for awareness, education and early intervention within the general community.
Di has enormous consideration for her volunteers and is meticulous in ensuring volunteers are carefully matched to roles that match their wishes, capabilities and comfort zone.
In addition to a counselling service, Di has coordinated a wide variety of volunteer-led fundraising activities and education events. Di’s leadership inspires engagement and positivity from her volunteers, who feel like they can do something constructive about melanoma
Lisa Plohl – Huon Valley (Ranelagh) Animal Evacuation Centre – Huon Valley Council
Lisa Plohl developed the idea for an Animal Evacuation Centre in 2013. She has been volunteering as Coordinator ever since, with support from Huon Valley Council. Lisa’s role has involved developing plans for operation of the centre, increasing awareness and—in the event of bushfire—activating volunteers and managing the centre. Lisa has inspired others to join the cause by using community networks and personal relationships.
During the Huon Valley bushfires earlier this year, Lisa activated the centre which housed over 450 animals and about 12 families. She managed volunteers on the go, developing and refining inductions and procedures. In this highly stressful situation, Lisa was constantly training new volunteers, many of who were personally impacted by the fires, She ensured that each volunteer clearly knew their role and she was always available to provide support and answer questions.
Lisa instilled confidence in everyone around her and even managed to make it fun—a wonderful achievement in emotional circumstances.