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Surveying volunteers

A SURVEY to gauge how volunteers in the Illawarra are being supported and what their needs might be will be undertaken by Wollongong City Council.

The research project will explore the views and experiences of volunteers from the Illawarra compared with the views and experiences reported by volunteers in two recent research projects, conducted nationally and across NSW.

Manager Community Cultural and Library Services Jenny Thompson said it is essential that Council discovers how volunteers are feeling and what is expected of them.

“Volunteers give of themselves in so many different ways and contribute to so many different areas of our community,” Ms Thompson said.

“At Council alone, we have a wonderful team of volunteers who support our service delivery from library services, to social support, and bush care groups.

“This survey is part two of a research project that Council’s Volunteering Illawarra unit is conducting into the state of volunteering in the Illawarra. It is aimed at current and prospective volunteers. The findings will enable Council to understand what a volunteer expects from their volunteering experience and how we can make volunteering a fulfilling experience.”

Volunteering Illawarra’s earlier research looked at the factors that increase success for organisations in managing volunteers, making volunteering more sustainable for community organisations. Data comparisons were drawn between the outcomes of this research and National and State data, to see how the Illawarra was trending. The research also explored generational differences, the expectations of organisations and their capacity to adapt to change.

Results from both parts of the survey will be compared with information from National and State research projects. The survey will close on Sunday June 17.

Council is asking that all volunteers and prospective volunteers take 10 minutes to complete the survey. It is available at http://wcc.wollongong.nsw.gov.au/limesurvey/index.php?sid=87413&lang=en

For more information visit Council’s website or call Council’s Customer Service Centre on (02) 4227 7111.

About Mick Roberts

A newspaper journalist, writer and local historian, Mick Roberts specialises in Australian cultural history, particularly associated with the Australian hotel and liquor industry. Mick has had an interest in revealing the colourful story of pubs, inns and associated industries in the Sydney and Illawarra regions of NSW for over 30 years. He is currently working on a comprehensive history of the hotel and liquor industry in the Illawarra region of NSW. Besides authoring a number of history books, Mick has owned and operated several community newspapers. He was one time editor of the Wollongong Northern News, The Bulli Times, The Northern Times, The Northern Leader and The Local - all located in the Wollongong region. As a journalist he has worked for Rural Press, Cumberland (News Limted), Sydney based, City News, and is now with Torch Publications.

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