9 May 2016
Volunteer Spotlight – Shannon
I first heard about Youngcare a number of years ago through my employer Suncorp which is a regular sponsor at annual Youngcare events. A few colleagues and I braved the run through Brisbane City on a Friday afternoon in our budgie smugglers for the Youngcare Budgie Bolt. It was through participation in this event that I began to find out about the wonderful things that Youngcare do for young Aussies in need.
Pictured: Shannon volunteering at Oktoberfest Brisbane 2015
Learning that so many young people wake up in aged care every day was shocking, I couldn’t fathom it. I had visited grandparents in aged care many times and I knew this wasn’t right. Young people deserve to live with independence and dignity. After my second Budgie Bolt, I was eager to contribute more to this wonderful organisation and submitted my interest in becoming a volunteer.
Liz was quick to respond and outline the upcoming events that I could get on board for. Oktoberfest was one I couldn’t go past and I was energetic about getting involved with the photo booth and interactive soccer. It was really heart-warming to work alongside people who genuinely cared about the great work that Youngcare do. The response from the public was amazing; people were so eager to hear more, get involved and donate! We even met people with family members who have high care needs who were so appreciative of us just being there and doing what we can to help. It really was an indescribable feeling being a part of something so important.
Another highlight was working alongside my friend Samantha wrapping Christmas presents at Brookside Shopping Centre. We were flat out the whole shift, but could engage in great conversations as we expertly wrapped people’s presents. We again had such a warm reception and I was so happy to hear that most people had heard of Youngcare. Each interaction was a way to raise more awareness and everyone was so generous with their donations. It was very touching to see.
I have volunteered for a number of organisations and feel passionately about trying to make this world a better place, even in the smallest ways. The staff and volunteers at Youngcare are friendly, supportive and committed to the cause. I truly believe in Youngcare and I am looking forward to future volunteer opportunities and getting more friends and family involved so that we can continue to create a brighter future for so many young Australians.