National Volunteer Week
Mr Howard (Buninyong) (10:03:04) — To mark National Volunteer Week I would like to take this opportunity to recognise the important work of volunteers across the communities within the Ballarat region. It is a highlight of my role to interact on an almost daily basis with volunteers contributing in so many ways to the wellbeing of others.
When thinking about volunteers, many people think first of the important contribution made by our Country Fire Authority (CFA) volunteers, and with 31 CFA brigades across my electorate that represents more than 1000 volunteers alone. But adding to that are thousands more in Ballarat, Ballan, Buninyong and the surrounding towns: volunteers in the Victoria State Emergency Service, at sporting clubs, at men’s sheds and at op shops; volunteers who visit hospitals or older residents in their homes, bringing meals on wheels and supporting people with special needs at community houses and at women’s refuges; volunteers at schools supporting school reading and breakfast clubs; L2P drivers; mentors; Landcare volunteers; volunteers organising community events or undertaking fundraising; RSLs; the Red Cross; and Lions and Rotary clubs. The list goes on.
I was pleased to visit the Ballarat Fish Hatchery last week, where volunteers at the Ballarat Fish Acclimatisation Society have been rearing trout to stock Lake Wendouree and so many other lakes, dams and waterways for nearly 150 years now. Volunteers give up their time, their energy and their hard work to serve our community, and for the most part I believe they enjoy their volunteering and the social opportunities it brings.