13 May 2009
VOLUNTEER WEEK MEETS BUDGET WEEK
Senator Mitch Fifield, the Coalition’s spokesperson for the voluntary sector, today recognised volunteers throughout Australia for their outstanding contribution to Australian society.
“After attending the launch of National Volunteer Week on Monday night, I was looking forward to hearing the good news for volunteers on Tuesday night in the Federal Budget, particularly after the Government’s spokesperson, Senator Ursula Stephens, waxed lyrical about the Government’s commitment to the sector.
“Unfortunately, the Rudd Government had nothing new for volunteers in the Federal Budget. Instead, they belatedly confirmed the continuation of grants for volunteer organisations that were set to expire on June 30 this year. This delay had caused great angst to organisations needing to sign employment contracts and make agreements for the future.
“Volunteers are a crucial part of our community and need as much support as we can provide, particularly in an economic environment where the demand on their services are greater than ever.
Volunteers perform a range of important work through emergency services, sport and recreation, education and training, community health care, heritage and arts, environment, conservation and religious, community and welfare organisations.
Volunteers make valuable contributions to our community every day through a huge range of activities, which are recognised in National Volunteer Week (NVW), 11 17 May 2009.
National Volunteer Week provides an opportunity to pay tribute to these volunteers who give generously of their time and energy to benefit others. In 2009 we have seen the importance of volunteers in a much clearer light in the wake of the bushfires in Victoria and floods in Queensland.
“National Volunteer Week is a chance for us all to thank, recognise and show our support to the more than five million Australian volunteers for their sacrifices and hard work. Our communities would not be the same without them.
“I encourage all Australians to do whatever they can to support volunteers, get involved in National Volunteer Week 2009 and find out more about opportunities to contribute to their local communities.
For further information on National Volunteer Week visit www.volunteeringaustralia.org.au/nvm