Why should I volunteer in aged care?
Volunteering for an aged care provider can be a very fulfilling experience – and volunteering roles are much more diverse than most people think.
Being an aged care volunteer offers the opportunity to:
- Meet new people
- Learn from our residents’ life experiences
- Enrich the lives of older people
- Gain a sense of purpose
- Know that you are making a difference
- Develop skills, knowledge and experience
- Volunteer at a location close to home
- Choose when you volunteer and your time commitment
At Eldercare, many of our volunteers offer their skills and passions to residents in our 11 aged care homes by:
- leading special interest groups (it could be newspaper reading, growing orchids, beer brewing or something completely new – it’s up to you!)
- teaching residents’ new skills (like painting or baking) and learning from them
- getting to know new people and forming strong friendships
- transporting residents to help them revisit or explore their communities
- assisting hospitality staff with cleaning, preparing food, laundering and folding towels, linen and clothes
- supporting our maintenance teams with things like fixing furniture and hanging pictures on walls
Volunteers can also support our head office teams, either on an ongoing basis or on a time-based project. Eldercare currently has a team of volunteers that help us gain a wide range of feedback from our residents.
Others have assisted the retirement living and finance teams as well as the My Music project, which involved creating a music profile for a resident, putting all their music on a device of their choice and helping them to access their music for enjoyment, entertainment and relaxation.
Another volunteer supports our hospitality team to enhance the dining experience.
1. Meet new people
Volunteering in aged care is a great way to join a supportive team and meet new people – and you may find that you share a lot of the same values given you are working towards the same goal of supporting older people.
Our volunteers have told us that making new friends with residents and their families, as well as staff and other volunteers, has been one of the best parts about their experience with Eldercare.
2. Learn from residents' life experiences
Residents in our aged care homes have had some incredible experiences and witnessed a lot of change throughout their lives. It can be very humbling to hear their stories about their careers, hobbies and families and how they have lived and continue to live their life.
3. Enrich the lives of older people
We take a mind, body, spirit approach to care at Eldercare and, as care needs increase and become more complex, we’re seeing our volunteers play an increasingly important role looking after the wellbeing of each resident which complements the clinical and wellness care our staff deliver.
Volunteers are vital in offering companionship to residents and to helping them live a rich and fulfilled life.
4. Gain a sense of purpose
It’s no secret that giving back to the community benefits everyone involved. Many of our volunteers say that their roles at Eldercare help them find purpose and remember that helping others is incredibly rewarding.
5. Know that you are making a difference
Volunteers make a difference to residents’ lives as they are among their closest friends and most regular visitors. Residents have peace of mind as they get to know the volunteers and residents’ families have peace of mind knowing that between staff and volunteers, there will be someone around to help care for their loved one.
6. Develop skills, knowledge and experience
All new volunteers are provided with basic training (including manual handling) and refresher training.
The state government, through the Office for Volunteers, has developed nationally recognised training that values the work of volunteers. Eldercare has aligned its training to the state government’s framework.
Additionally, those entering tertiary study may be awarded academic credit for skills and experience gained through their voluntary work.
7. Volunteer at a location close to home
Volunteers are welcome to contribute at Eldercare’s 11 aged care homes across the greater Adelaide and Yorke Peninsula regions, as well as at our head office in Eastwood.
8. Choose when you want to volunteer and your time commitment
Depending on your volunteering role, you may be able to select the days and times you would like to volunteer, as well as your weekly time commitment. Check the volunteer vacancies page to see which positions are currently available and their weekly time commitments.