Mother Teresa said, ‘Love cannot remain by itself - it has no meaning. Love has to be put into action and that action is service’.
Catholic Healthcare is funded to run the Australian government program, Aged Care Volunteer Visitors Scheme. This program presents a volunteering opportunity to provide our elderly with companionship and connection through regular in-home visits or over-the-phone chats.
Home visits can include having morning tea together, discussing family news, walking around the backyard, or visiting a local café, among other activities.
The good news is that volunteers, too, can benefit from the experience by making new friends and sharing the stuff of life with someone who may be lonely.
Phone call volunteer, Rowena Brookes, has built a three-year relationship with 95-year-old Joan Hine despite never having met face-to-face.
With over a 45-year age difference, the two share weekly phone calls discussing everything from each other’s families to their mutual love of dog breeding.
‘Joan and I speak weekly, and both really enjoy our chats,’ said Rowena.
‘They are always lively, and we have developed a lovely friendship. She is a remarkable woman. We get on like a house on fire!’ she said.
So, if you have a regular hour free to enrich an older person's life, allow us to match you with someone who shares your interests, cultural background, and language.