Volunteers are being empowered to provide welfare checks, deliver supplies and offer essential transport to vulnerable people through a new online platform linking community members with charities, NGOs and councils in need of support.
Minister for Families, Communities and Disability Services Gareth Ward encouraged volunteers and organisations to register on the new Emergency Support Volunteering website to help support people impacted by COVID-19.
“In times of crisis, we rally around each other and do everything we can to support those who are struggling. We saw it during the bushfire emergency and we are seeing it again now,” Mr Ward said.
“The pandemic is placing a significant strain on volunteer-driven organisations who support vulnerable members of our community, and many require more people to help meet demand.
“This platform allows you to register your details online and an organisation in your local area will get in touch and offer volunteering opportunities when they arise.”
The NSW Government has partnered with the Centre for Volunteering to develop the platform which is also operating in Victoria and Western Australia.
Centre for Volunteering CEO Gemma Rygate said the platform prioritises the safety and wellbeing of participants and is designed to offer informal voluntary opportunities that consider physical distancing restrictions.
“There are many ways you can safely volunteer during the current pandemic, including by making welfare check phone calls from the comfort of your home, or by delivering groceries to those unable to do their own shopping,” Ms Rygate said.
“This new platform is a link for spontaneous volunteers and organisations, and has capacity to be used beyond COVID-19 as a means of connecting willing participants with organisations in need of support during an emergency.”
For more information, and to register, visit Emergency Support Volunteering.