Volunteering with MMM

We love to do some volunteer work when we travel. Volunteering is a great way to give back to a community and to connect with the local people. It also has some great benefits for you too! We have the time and energy to give at this stage of our lives. Just because we are retired doesn't mean that we are 'past our use by dates'.
 

Volunteering also helps us to focus on others rather than just on ourselves. Australia has always been a great country for it's huge volunteer base and I think this is something to be encouraged.

There are so many ways one can volunteer even when travelling. There are many organizations that will pair you with people or groups that will gladly make use of any time or skills you wish to share while you are on the road. You can also make your own arrangements yourself if that suits you better.

Rob installed a pack kitchen at Wirraway Youth Centre
You do not need to have specific skills, just a willing heart and hand. Maybe you can read and tell stories at the libraries or nursing homes. Maybe you can wield a paint brush or roller and put a fresh coat of paint on doors. I love gardening and often will trim and weed neglected gardens, though obviously I can do some other things such as general cleaning and I am often called in as an extra pair of hands for Rob.

Watching the cattle get mustered at Bogarella Station in Qld

Rob is a handyman who is also a qualified carpenter and as such he is very popular just about every where we go. As you can imagine there is often a shortage of tradespeople in many small communities and remote areas. In some places, the people were just worn out and needed some TLC, Rob did a lot of little maintenance jobs around the house and I 'played' with the baby and helped with the never ending washing pile. I was also able to help do those odd bits of housework that rarely ever gets attention such as washing the walls.

Camped at Bogarella Cattle Station
Depending upon the jobs in hand and where they are, we found that most of the time we stayed on site in our our caravan or motorhome and had use of their electricity and water. Toilets and showers would be a bonus.
Camped with another couple at Robxby Downs
Mostly Rob and I have worked with various Christian Organizations including MMM (Mobile Ministry Maintenance), BCA (Bush Church Aid) and Frontier Services. There are others that I know of include Blaze Aid & National Parks. I have also heard that you can contact various Shires, Councils and Aboriginal Boards such as Volunteering WA and ask if there is something you could do in their area.



Due to my health issues, we have joined only a 2 week stint with a MMM safari here in Tasmania where there were 5 couples (and a single lady) and we did a lot of building maintenance and painting jobs at the Emmanuel Christian School, in east Hobart. Most of the ladies did painting jobs, one looks after the kitchen where we had morning and afternoon teas, lunch and the occasional combined meal.

2 of the ladies having fun whilst staining the benches with MMM (in Hobart)

The men were all tradespeople and were put to good use building cupboards, concreting, fencing and what not. As I said, I am still recovering from health issues and so I took it easy. When I felt I could handle it, I did some painting, only to find even a few hours of this was too much for me, so mostly I just joined everyone for morning tea and lunch each day and took it easy.

Taking some time out to do some work on our motorhome
Everyone is encouraged to only work within their own capability. If you like to sleep in or have a day out, you can.
 
The MMM safari team at Emmanuel School
We didn't know any of the other people when we started and we left as good friends. They are mostly travelling together to other 'jobs' that have been lined up (that's the safari part). But Rob and I wanted to travel and see more of Tasmania. As we loved working with this team, we endeavour to join them again up north near Smithton just a few weeks before we sail back to the mainland and start heading home.


3 comments:

  1. Well done. Yes good volunteering is a two way street and very rewarding.

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    Replies
    1. We love doing it and meeting even more people along the way.

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  2. Well done. Yes good volunteering is a two way street and very rewarding.

    ReplyDelete

Thank you so much for popping by, I appreciate your comments!
Michelle