Copy and paste this into an email to your local candidate.
Subject: Save volunteering in Tasmania.
Dear Mr/Mrs/Ms/Dr (Last Name),
I am writing as a constituent in your electorate who cares deeply about volunteering and its fundamental role in our community. There is growing media coverage showing how organisations in Tasmania are struggling for volunteers. These shortages are in critical areas such as front-line health, meals and care for homeless people and in aged care. As a volunteer, I know this because becoming a volunteer is getting harder. We struggle to cover the costs associated with volunteering such as transportation, training, police checks and protective clothing. We need flexibility and a volunteer roster that fits around our lives, that can work with our changing commitments and is supported by a real person. We need managers who are resourced to ensure that we are safe and engaged in meaningful and impactful work.
Volunteering Tasmania has confirmed through early release data that the cost to volunteer is increasing and significant. In 2023, it cost an individual approximately $11.88 an hour to volunteer. In a cost-of-living crisis, this is no small amount. It is not that Tasmanians don’t want to help, in fact, most of us volunteer, with volunteer rates increasing to 332,100 in 2023. This is 69.8% of our population. But volunteers are turning to more casual and flexible opportunities that don’t have the price tag.
Volunteers are not motivated by financial gain, but with increases in regulatory requirements and a cost-of-living crisis, investment is needed to ensure the abundance of volunteers we have can support the critical services that ensure we feel safe, supported, and welcome in Tasmania.
I ask that you support Volunteering Tasmania’s Budget Priority Submission to build on the strength and enthusiasm of the Tasmanian people. This relatively small investment will direct the growing volunteer contributions of Tasmanians towards the place-based and community-led organisations in their community. The submission provides solutions that move beyond awareness raising, to structural and systemic change that will support organisations to utilise the already significant contribution Tasmanians want to make.
I believe, in supporting this Budget Priority Submission, you are reducing the barriers that restrict volunteers and organisations from connecting. You are acknowledging and valuing the incredible contribution that Tasmanians make to their communities every day.
[Add your name]
Thanks for your support!