Boost your work experience in Australia by volunteering
There are many benefits of volunteering, it can be a way of stepping outside your comfort zone and growing your confidence in your new city. You will be able to meet new people, gain different work experiences and learn about people from other cultures. Read on to find out more about different kind of volunteering experiences in Australia and how volunteering could be a good step in landing your first job in Australia.
Increase your network, meet new friends and overcome loneliness
Volunteering is a good way to meet like-minded people, also a chance to meet people from all different walks of life. Living in a new city and country, it’s important to take opportunities to talk to new people and make friends. A regular volunteering gig can be a fantastic way of doing this and learning about your local area.
You never know when you might need some help, or where a friend from your network might be able to help you out in your new life.
Learn about the Australia workplace and culture
You can learn something from every new workplace you’re exposed to. Learn how the organisation operates, about their goals and objectives, and the skills required for different positions available.
Volunteering work can be a valuable experience to prepare you for work in Australia. Deepen your understanding about work culture and attitudes, improve your English and understanding of Australian industries.
Develop soft skills
Volunteering provides a great environment to work on your soft skills, the type of skills that are transferrable to any job you take on. Grow your soft skills in terms of team-work, communication, listening skills, adaptability, and problem solving.
These skills are important ones that future employers will look to positively. The ability to adapt to different work places and situations and to be able to clearly communicate your viewpoint are important soft skills. How you work in a team environment and how you interact and relate to others are important skills for any job you apply for.
Most importantly, giving back to the community is rewarding! Especially if you’re working for a charity, the experience in helping others less fortunate is enriching, and many volunteers saying they personally get a lot out of the experience of helping others. Charity workers feel a sense of involvement and engagement in the community and the atmosphere can be different to other work, as people are there because they choose to be. This can make for a positive environment.
Opportunities lie in the non for profit or charity sector and profit sector.
St Vincent Soup Vans
If you’re looking for a regular volunteering job, consider St Vincent soup vans, or becoming a ‘Vannie’ as they are affectionately known. Vannies help make a difference in the lives of those going through a tough time, or people experiencing homelessness. Typical tasks could include preparing food, cleaning and talking to and distributing food to St Vinnies customers. St Vinnies volunteers normally do a 4 hrs shift once a fortnight. St Vinnie Vannies operate in all Australian states. Check out how to register in your local state
FareShare accepts surplus food from organisations and cooks 5,000 nutritious meals each day for different charities with the support of over 750 volunteers. Are you interested in working with people or food? This would be an amazing experience to learn the process of taking remnant food and making it into nutritious meals. FareShare are a not for profit based in Abbotsford, Melbourne.
How to volunteer?
- Think of an area of interest
- Make a list of organisations that you’re interested in
- Call them, apply via email and follow up your application with an email
Where can I volunteer?
- Animals, for example RSPCA
- Homeless, for example St Vincents
- Children or the Elderly
- Events, reaching out to your university would be a good idea
- Environment, consider Greening Australia or Conservation
Where can I find more help on volunteering in Australia?
Depending on where you can live, see links for more information on volunteering gigs in your local state.
Why not get started today, by writing down a list of organisations you would like to volunteer for. You will probably be surprised by how much you enjoy the experience of interreacting with other volunteers and giving back to the community.