About Volunteering

Volunteering benefits both the community and the volunteer. It promotes equality and human rights; respecting the dignity, rights and culture of others, and is undertaken and freely chosen by a person without coercion. Volunteer work is unpaid, and does not seek to replace paid workers.

Volunteers in Palliative Care

Volunteers in palliative care can offer friendship and practical support that improves the quality of life of people living with a life limiting illness and their families. Volunteers are considered important members of the palliative care team.

There are varied roles available within palliative care for volunteers. The majority of palliative care volunteers work in the home or inpatient palliative care setting. They can offer a wide range of services: being with someone while their carer goes out, shopping, providing companionship, taking someone for a drive or to an appointment, writing letters, minding children, writing someone’s life story, singing, answering the phone, making bereavement phone calls, helping organise a memorial service, helping with life enhancement projects, providing beauty treatments, gentle massage, reflexology, aromatherapy and other suitable complementary therapies, or from a service perspective, administrative support and assistance with fundraising.

How to become a palliative care volunteer

Each palliative care service recruits, trains and manages their own group of volunteers.  If you are interested in becoming a palliative care volunteer, you should contact the palliative care service in the area where you will be volunteering. ( link here to Gippsland services, or PCVs ‘find a service’ function.

You can contact your local palliative care service to express interest or seek more information. Once you have selected and contacted the organisation of your choice, you will probably be invited to attend an interview. Organisations conduct interviews so people can find out more about the volunteer job and the organisation can find the right volunteer for the job.

Volunteering in Gippsland

The following table illustrates the commitment of Gippslanders to volunteering . In all LGAs, Gippsland exceeds the state average of people over the age of 15 who volunteered in 2011.

LGA Bass Coast Baw Baw East Gippsland Latrobe South Gippsland Wellington Gippsland Victoria
Volunteers 24.70% 25.80% 27.60% 19.50% 31.50% 26.40% 24.90% 19.30%

Useful Resource

The Two of Us

To celebrate National Volunteer Week and National Palliative Care Week in May 2015, Palliative Care Victoria decided to ‘go behind the scenes’ and invite pairs of palliative care volunteers and the people they support to tell us about their relationships.  The Two of Us encaptures eight inspiring stories illustrating how these are mutually valued and enriching relationships.


Useful websites

These websites are an excellent resource for information on volunteering facts and figures, policies and procedures, best practice, skills and training, research and publications.

Palliative Care Victoria
Palliative Care Victoria Inc (PCV) is the peak body representing palliative care providers, consumers and their families and those with an interest in palliative care in Victoria.  Copies of the 2012 Palliative Care Volunteering Training Resource Kit can be ordered and purchased through the site.  Health Services that are members of PCV would have received a free copy of the Kit when it was released in 2012.

Volunteering Victoria
Volunteering Victoria is the peak body for the volunteering sector, including organisations that employ volunteers and their volunteer managers, individuals who work as volunteers in Victoria.

Volunteering Australia
Volunteering Australia is the peak national body working to advance volunteering in the Australian community.