After years working in the corporate sector, Lisa Malcher has pivoted to using her skills to give back to her community.
Lisa is one of the many volunteers at CatholicCare’s Springwood Drop-In Centre, located in the centre of town.
“I live in Springwood, so volunteering and giving back to my community is perfect,” she told Catholic Outlook. “I’ve always been passionate about this field, and I felt it was time for me to jump in.”
Lisa expressed her interest in volunteering in mid-2020 by applying through the NSW Volunteering website, where she applied at a range of services.
Knowing that a lot of services were not operating during the peak of the pandemic, Lisa was fortunate that when she reached out to CatholicCare, she heard a response the next day.
“I started the following week,” she explained.
Lisa volunteers at the centre twice a week and helps with the day-to-day administration tasks of the Drop-In Centre. But she is always happy to sit and chat with members of the local community.
“I think the Drop-In Centre is important because you can have conversations with people who might not chat with others,” she says.
“There are some people in our community that can be lonely. When they come in to the centre, they start off as strangers, but the more they visit, and you remember them and parts of their lives, it means a lot to them and a lot to me.
“One human exchange could brighten their day.”
For those cautious about taking the first step into the volunteering world, Lisa advises people to just be ‘in the moment’.
“I would encourage people to leave all of their expectations at the door, and be open to the experience and to the people you meet.
“I go home every day knowing that I had purpose in that day, even if it’s doing the little things, I know that I’m appreciated.
“Volunteering is so rewarding; I really should’ve done it sooner.”
CatholicCare’s Springwood Drop-In Centre are looking for a volunteer receptionist/administration assistant to cover a three-hour shift, either 10am to 1pm or 1pm to 4pm.
For more information, or to apply, please contact Sally Butler, Community Outreach Officer on (02) 8843 2545 or Sally.Butler@ccss.org.au
National Volunteer Week runs from 17 to 23 May.