For OrganisationsDawn Green2023-12-07T08:57:56+00:00
Volunteering Tasmania is committed to the development of the sector and to the professional development of managers of volunteers, paid and unpaid.
Behind great volunteer experiences is effective leadership and management. Volunteering Tasmania is passionately committed to supporting organisations through the provision of information and advice. We offer a range of opportunities for advancement and support.
Celebrating volunteers with disability
Our disability awareness campaign is the result of a co-design project facilitated by Volunteering Tasmania, alongside key stakeholders, to help understand the challenges and needs of people with disability, and to support organisations to deliver more accessible and inclusive volunteering opportunities. The campaign aims to support a volunteering sector where volunteering opportunities are meaningful, equitable, and accessible for people with disability.
The experiences of seven volunteers with disability from across the State are highlighted in video or story form, below.
Celebrating difference – a conversation with Dee, a volunteer
Hanna, with nearly two years of dedicated volunteering under her belt, is a driver for Mersey Community Care, going the extra mile, quite literally, to support her community. Her role involves transporting members to appointments, aiding in family visits, and assisting with grocery shopping. She also extends her kindness to helping others during Mersey’s bus outings, ensuring passengers’ comfort with seat belts, walking sticks, and walking frames.
For Hanna, volunteering is simply an extension of her personality, driven by a genuine desire to help others.
Drawing from her diverse experiences, Hanna provides valuable insights into creating supportive environments for volunteers with disabilities. She emphasises the importance of open-mindedness and clear communication, stating, “Not everyone understands the same. Not everyone’s brain works the same.”
She encourages organisations to explicitly express their support for volunteers, assuring them that they can ask for help without fear of rejection.
Hanna also underscores the significance of language, urging the use of plain English and tailoring communication to individuals’ needs. She highlights the importance of considering diverse perspectives, such as using both 24-hour and 12-hour time formats on documents.
Additionally, she advocates for a more personalised approach during induction, suggesting organisations offer one-to-one explanations rather than overwhelming volunteers with extensive written information.
In terms of technology, Hanna recommends embracing tools that facilitate volunteering, especially for those with literacy difficulties. She shares her positive experience using a voice recorder during training sessions to capture information, suggesting its use as an alternative to filling out overwhelming forms. She says that providing volunteers with sample completed forms and key words would also assist in the process.
Hanna maintains an overwhelmingly positive outlook on her volunteering experience. She describes the environment at Mersey Community Care as inclusive and understanding, emphasising that if she doesn’t know something, she can always ask.
In Hanna’s world, volunteering is not just a task but a source of joy and connection.
Volunteer Connect is a national volunteer referral system which connects volunteers and organisations. It allows people to search for a new volunteer role and for volunteer-involving organisations to advertise for and recruit new volunteers.