Many Flinders University students volunteer their time outside of their studies in an area they are passionate about. The students have discovered they are not only developing their professional skills, but are connecting with their community, making friends and having an impact.
Their efforts were celebrated recently during National Student Volunteer Week. Be inspired by their stories and the valuable contribution they are making to their communities!
Tasnim Jahan Mim Volunteer with Red Cross & Southern Cross Care
I am an international student and I started my journey as a volunteer in Australia a few months ago. I was looking for part-time jobs but due to COVID-19, it was hard for me to get a job. I was getting stressed, anxiety and all the negative vibes. Eventually, I realised, I need to do something to divert my mind from this negative pandemic so I started applying for volunteering roles in many organisations. And got selected as a Retail Sales Assistant at Red Cross and Healthy Ageing Assistant at Southern Cross Care SA.
As a volunteer at Red Cross, I learnt how to use an EFTPOS machine, organising the products, pricing the products, and hygiene in the store. On the other hand, in Southern Cross Care, I engaged working with aged people. I assisted them in their daily walks, helped them in their hobbies like gardening, singing or card plays. I became an active volunteer and started loving my work.
The best part of working there is that I am meeting new people every day. Contributing my skills, passion, learning different words, coping with the Australian workplace are the main things, I am enjoying right now.
For me, volunteering means working with passion, honesty and thinking about the wellbeing of the society.
Nitya Devi Sri Ganesh Volunteer with Flinders International Study Centre, Southern Cross Care, Holden Street Theatres and Dementia Australia
As a new student in a new country, it can be daunting in the beginning, that is why I chose to volunteer. It was to meet new people and to learn about the culture. However, through volunteering, it has developed my professional skills, especially my communication skills, and I learnt up some soft skills that would be helpful for my career.
Having been productively volunteering in many events and organisations has shaped me as an individual, to be attentive to intricate details and the people around me. It has also defined me as a cheerful individual with honesty, integrity, discipline and responsibility. From those events, I have also developed a wide range of skills such as to be a capable, reliable, leadership and versatile team player. From my involvement in volunteering, I enjoy meeting new people and learning up other cultures while volunteering.
Finally, volunteering to me means to give back to society, to build the community and to practise harmonious living. Also, it does not require a materialistic reward to see a smile on others.
Wing Kwan Sally Kwok Volunteer with the City of Salisbury
I have the privilege and pleasure to be a volunteer community market coordinator for the Salisbury East Neighbourhood Centre at the City of Salisbury since October 2019. The aim of such a community market is to promote community engagement and a sense of neighbourhood in the area.
My volunteer role is responsible for the planning, promotion, communications and implementation of community markets at Salisbury East. Through volunteering, I’ve gained much more than I gave, as I’ve built many precious new friendships, learnt exciting new local cultures & practices, gained project planning & execution skills as well as expanded my network of connections in Adelaide. With collaborative efforts and huge support from the community, a festive twilight community market with live music and performances was held successfully this February.
With a growing love for the people in the City of Salisbury, I’ve pushed myself further and was honoured to be selected as a member of the Salisbury Intercultural Community Alliance starting this September, where I will join hands in embracing the co-existence of different cultures and promoting the interaction and shared human experience of people from all cultures in the city.”
Bradley Martin Volunteer with Out for Australia, Queers In Science, and DigiVol
For me, volunteering is about helping to build a better future for people and the community. This mindset has led me to volunteer as a part of many community groups citizen science projects over the last six years.
Currently, I volunteer with Out for Australia and Queers In Science to empower the personal and professional development of LGBTQIA+ youth in South Australia. In my roles, I work with a diverse group of talented people to organise discussion panels and social events, showcasing role models, performances and topics that matter to the community. These initiatives nurture a sense of community and connection, supporting people to their true and authentic selves. For me, volunteering is about helping to build a better future for people and the community. This mindset has led me to volunteer as a part of many community groups citizen science projects over the last six years.
While volunteering to manage events presents both personal and logistical challenges, the rewards have far outweighed the costs. Contributing to the community has helped to grow my confidence and skills, benefiting both my studies and work life. Changing the lives of people and inspiring others to make a difference continues to be the most rewarding part of volunteering. It also gives me hope that together we can build better communities that treat people fairly and equally.