This week, the team at Baptist World Aid has been busy celebrating National Volunteer Week by honouring our amazing volunteers. The theme for 2019 is “Making a world of difference” – and boy… do they ever!
From administration to IT, HR to graphic design, our volunteers generously give of their time, using what they have to make a difference in this broken world.
Here are three of their stories.
Baptist World Aid has a need for design skills to produce print and web materials that are supposed to speak to people and send a message in a visual way – which is what I’ve been trained to do.
Volunteering at Baptist World Aid, I’ve enjoyed being able to use my skills in a really practical way. Being able to create things that you can then see being used to speak to people about important issues is pretty cool.
I feel that, as Christians, we’re called to serve others and love others.
We live in Australia and we’re so fortunate with everything that we have. Just the fact that there is this poverty in so many places of the world, to me, it doesn’t seem like it’s adding up with what we’re called to do and what we’re able to do. And that’s part of why I chose to volunteer here.
Baptist World Aid has a vision for a world without poverty… and if I can do my part with the skills that I have and the time that I have, then that’s what I want to do.
I volunteer with the Child Sponsorship Team checking Annual Progress Reports – a communication to sponsors that gives them a good indication of how their support is helping their sponsored child through project activities from year to year. My role is to format and proofread these reports, to make sure that what you receive is clear and presentable.
I also get to read letters from Sponsored Children. It’s interesting how these letters are coming from the heart of the child. It’s encouraging to read how they feel about the whole program… and how grateful they are that somebody, somewhere, thousands of miles away, cares for them.
Through volunteering, I’ve learned about Baptist World Aid programming and your Child Sponsorship. Through different activities, children and their families learn how to improve their living standards through learning new skills. And that’s what encourages me to keep doing what I am doing.
If we look at our lives – where we live, how we live – we are so privileged. But, at the same time, we have people in other parts of the world who are struggling to have a comfortable and reasonable life. They are struggling to overcome poverty.
I do this because I feel that it is my way of giving something back to the society and the world.
15 years ago my dad died, and I had been visiting him on a Tuesday for yonks. After his death, I thought, “I’ve got to find something different to do on a Tuesday.”
At the time, I was attending a Baptist Church and it was advertising for volunteers at Baptist World Aid. I’d supported a child through the organisation prior to that and had had an interest in the justice issues that Baptist World Aid was talking about, so, I began volunteering here in the January of 2004.
It fits in very well with my passion to help those who need help more than we do and to help people lift themselves out of the poverty and the difficult situations that they’re in.
I love working here – it’s always been a lovely, harmonious place to work and everyone shares that similar passion for those in need. Also, it’s just nice to work with people who care about what they’re doing and really care about you and each other. It’s really special.
I read the letters that supporters have written to Sponsored Children, as a way of ensuring both child and supporter safety. It’s just lovely to see, over time, a real bond between the supporter and the child build up.
This work is really worthwhile. It’s very satisfying and rewarding.
I’d recommend it to anybody. If you’ve got some time and want to do something worthwhile with that time… volunteer with Baptist World Aid!
Yes, our volunteers bless us with tangible assistance, but, more importantly, they add so much to our workplace with their love and friendship. We are so grateful to work alongside these people who faithfully give of themselves and their talents and who share our vision for a world without poverty.
If you’re interested in volunteering with Baptist World Aid, go to: baptistworldaid.org.au/volunteer.