The Rotary Club of Ringwood, as a service club, works with community organisations to assist in the delivery of services. This evening I delivered a presentation on Eastern Volunteering, discussing the role of the organisation and potential opportunities for a partnership.
Eastern Volunteers has three divisions:
- Transport Services, which provides volunteer assisted transport for the frail aged and people with disabilities
- Volunteer Services, which recruits volunteers for over 400 community organisations
- Marketing Services, which delivers public events and partnerships for Eastern Volunteers
Eastern Volunteers is an accredited Home and Community Care Provider (HACC), which provides transport assistance to the frail aged and people with disabilities. During 2009/2010 financial year, volunteer drivers travelled 284,000 kilometres with volunteers providing over 14,000 hours. Demand for transport services is continuing to grow and Eastern Volunteers is in need of more transport drivers.
Eastern Volunteers is also responsible for the Eastern Transport Register, which is an online booking system that registers and coordinates vehicles across eastern Melbourne, as well as Yarra Ranges Community Access and Transport Your Resource in the East (TYRE), which supports transport needs in the Shire of Yarra Ranges.
Volunteer Services volunteer recruitment and training for people interested in volunteering. This functions similarly to a job recruitment agency but works to place volunteers in over 400 community organisations. These community organisations list volunteer opportunities with Eastern Volunteers, which interviews over 900 volunteers per annum to find suitable placements.
Importantly, volunteering is often being seen as an opportunity to develop employability skills, with many people utilising volunteers to seek employment or to consider career changes. Volunteer Services also provides services for corporate volunteering, whereby businesses offer opportunities for their employees to volunteer within the community.
Marketing Services, aims to establish EV as a regional peak body and is responsible for developing sponsorship packages, marketing and communications and delivering community events. This also includes the management of the Eastern Volunteers website and social media, including Facebook and Twitter, as well as media releases and campaigns.
Eastern Volunteers holds two community events per year. This includes the Annual Fun Run, which is held in March each year at Lillydale Lake and the Multicultural Spring Festival, which will be held on the 9th of October at Ringwood Lake. In addition, Marketing Services also manages the quarterly businesses booster breakfasts, which connects businesses with community organisations. The next Business Booster Breakfast will held on the 16th of November and features Simon McKeon, the 2011 Australian of the Year.
Details are available at www.easternvolunteers.org.au.
One of the current major campaigns is the Eastern Volunteers Building Fund, which seeks to relocate the organisation to the ground floor of a building it recently purchased. Eastern Volunteers is located on the first floor of 1/36 New Street, which has accessibility implications due to stairs. Eastern Volunteers seeks to raise $60,000 to meet costs associated with the relocation, including partitions, office furniture, telephone cabling and computer requirements. The Rotary Club of Ringwood recently donated $500 to the Building Fund campaign and will receive a jigsaw piece of the building for this support.
Eastern Volunteers has raised over $12,000 and is hoping to relocate to the ground floor by early 2012.
Friends of EV
Friends of EV is a supporters club for Eastern Volunteers. Membership is available for individuals, not-for-profit organisations and businesses, each of which receive exclusive membership benefits, including discounts to the business booster breakfasts and other events. Further information on Friends of EV is available at www.easternvolunteers.org.au/friends
Organisations must be able to work together to strengthen the delivery of services to the community. There is the possibility of a solid partnership between the Rotary Club of Ringwood and Eastern Volunteers and it is great to see the two organisations beginning these discussions.
Presentation on Eastern Volunteers to the Rotary Club of Ringwood