Pandemic volunteering wins award

In a normal year, our 160 volunteers are critical in the delivery of our services.

But 2020 was no normal year, and despite all the challenges the pandemic threw us all, our volunteers were at the forefront of our work to help keep our community safe and healthy in the most challenging of circumstances.

Connect Health & Community staff and clients greatly appreciate the efforts of volunteers during the pandemic.

In recognition of this, Connect Health & Community nominated all our Volunteers for the Glen Eira City Council Award for Outstanding Service, Contribution or Achievement - COVID-19 Pandemic.

And to our absolute delight, the team was announced winners at the Glen Eira City Council Community Awards held during National Volunteer Week 2021.

In nominating our volunteers, CEO Amanda Murphy said she was struck by the commitment and care shown by our volunteers during the unprecedented circumstances of 2020.

“Connect Health & Community Volunteers are an extraordinary group of committed people who readily volunteer their time to assist and support the Glen Eira community, despite the risks and challenges associated with the pandemic,” she said.

Ms Murphy said the volunteers worked closely and collaboratively with each other to meet the needs of others, and were integral to the ongoing success of strong links with, and support for, the broader community.

“This was no more apparent than in the amazing work our volunteers carried out during lockdown to support the lonely, isolated and most vulnerable people within our community.  As individuals and as a team, Connect Health & Community volunteers willingly stepped up to the rigors of Covid-safe training, practices and volunteering, and spent hundreds of hours:

  • Providing Glen Eira residents with vital medical transport to and from appointments, making 631 trips from March to December 2020;
  • Transporting residents to Social Support activities at Connect Health & Community when permitted;
  • Assisting at the Bentleigh East Covid-19 screening station to ensure a safe environment for all Connect Health & Community volunteers, clients and staff;
  • Attending PPE training sessions to ensure infection control best practice;
  • Completing online training in the areas of Hand Hygiene and Infection Control to provide a safe environment for clients using the service;
  • Sewing more than 180 reusable masks for vulnerable residents; and
  • Delivering 'Years of Service' awards to volunteers in lieu of the normal National Volunteer Week event on-site.

Ms Murphy said she was delighted that the hardwork of our volunteers was recogised with such a pestigous community award.

“I am so pleased that the outstanding work of our volunteers has been recognised by this council award.  As an organisation we see daily the amazing impact these dedicated, local citizens make and know that our community is the truly the winner for their efforts.  For this, and for all your amazing work, we say ‘Thank you!’,” she said.

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