An independent Christian charity marked a very important milestone in Bathurst yesterday, officially welcoming their one thousandth volunteer.
HammondCare welcomed Mudgee-based volunteer Clint Finn to their fold at a celebratory luncheon at Hope Bathurst.
Mr Finn moved to Mudgee from Sydney around 10 months ago for mining work, and while looking online for work for his partner, came across a volunteer opening with HammondCare.
“I work three or four days a week, so giving up an hour of my time is nothing,” he said.
“With something like HammondCare, you should be able to live independently for a little longer.”
Mr Finn visits an 89-year-old client every Tuesday, where they catch up for a chat and a meal.
“We can have a chat about anything without the emotional constraints of the family affecting us,” he said.
“It’s a positive thing to do, and if you’ve got time on your hands, by all means do it.”
Bathurst mayor Graeme Hanger was on hand to officially acknowledge Mr Finn as HammondCare’s one thousandth volunteer.
HammondCare offers a large variety of services in the fields of health and aged care, placing a particular emphasis on dementia and palliative care.
The charity cares for around 316 clients in the Central West, and HammondCare at Home general manager David Martin praised the ongoing work of volunteers in the region.
“Right from the start of HammondCare’s operations [in 1932], volunteers have been at the core of what we do,” Mr Martin said.
“For HammondCare to have reached a thousand volunteers is a fantastic achievement.”
HammondCare volunteer coordinator Suzanne Kissell said the charity’s services are extremely vital in helping the elderly maintain a positive well-being.
“It means that people aren’t left on their own, and they have a guaranteed visitor each week to help alleviate their loneliness,” Ms Kissell said.
“We know that clients love to have someone come in to make their week.”
In addition to the volunteers, HammondCare employs 3852 staff in 69 locations throughout Australia.