Volunteers wanted to help support WA’s vulnerable…

Kath receiving grant from LotteryWest
Kath Snell receives the grant from LotteryWest

Philanthropic not-for-profit organisation, United Way WA, is appealing for new volunteers to come forward for its Re-Engaging in Community program, which seeks to assist West Australians who have experienced homelessness to successfully re-join their community.

Supported by a grant of more than $500,000 from Lotterywest, the program is designed around a ‘buddy’ system that supports people who have recently entered stable accommodation, and who may need assistance to reignite old hobbies and combat social and practical barriers to living a stable and enriched life.

Run with support from not-for-profit partners Ruah and the 50 Lives 50 Homes project, United Way WA is seeking to recruit more than 100 volunteers who will be trained to support members of the program with understanding, patience and empathy.

CEO of United Way WA, Kath Snell said recovering from homelessness is a long and complicated journey that can be extremely isolating and challenging, but with the right support, individuals can succeed and successfully re-engage back in society.

“2020 has been a challenging year for everyone, but for those wanting to help others in their community, this program can really turn lives around, which is why we are appealing to West Australians who are keen to volunteer in a meaningful way to get in touch and help make a real difference in other people’s lives,” says Ms Snell.

“Volunteers are essentially ‘buddied’ up with someone who can support them to navigate life by, for example, helping them with new bus routes, finding out where their local walking group meets, assisting them to join a voluntary group themselves, or encouraging them to reignite an old passion, such as painting or singing.

“We are especially keen to hear from potential mentors who have some experience themselves of overcoming hardships, and who are willing to offer a few voluntary hours a month to assist people in our program to create healthier, supportive connections and more engaged, purposeful lives.”

For more information on becoming a volunteer buddy for the Re-Engaging in Community program, please contact volunteering@unitedwaywa.com.au