Federal Member for Bendigo, Lisa Chesters, is celebrating the work of Central Victoria’s Volunteer’s this International Volunteers Day. 

Ms Chesters says the day provides the opportunity to recognise the unsung heroes of our community.

 “Our volunteers and their organisations do a great job in creating a sense of belonging and social inclusion, and building stronger local communities,” she said.

“They show incredible commitment towards their organisations and take pride in their work.”

Ms Chesters says it’s important to highlight the time and energy our volunteer’s put in to their work, including;

Shannon Appleby, Headspace Youth Reference Group

“I want to raise awareness for youth mental health, and support groups to make our community more inclusive. I’m so passionate about the issues I work with, and I get so much out of it in return.”

Karen Whillance , Bendigo Health Emergency Department

“It’s great to be able to assist, even in small ways, to make life easier for people in difficult times. I’ve made lifelong friends out of volunteering, it connects you to the community and you really do gain more than you give.”

Tom Nicholson, Bendigo Umpires Association and North Bendigo Junior Football Club

“I enjoy working with kids and it’s rewarding to see them develop from the start of the season to the end. We need strong junior sporting clubs to feed into senior levels, so volunteering is my way to make sure that happens.”

Ms Chesters hopes the promotion of International Volunteer Day encourages new volunteers.

“If you have a little extra time and would like to contribute to building stronger local communities, I would encourage you to think about volunteering or join a service organisation.

“I enjoy volunteering for the Bendigo Farmers Market. It’s great to give back to your local community. I also enjoy the fellowship that comes with being involved in service clubs and organisations,” said Ms Chesters.