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WILLING AND ABLE
Volunteering North Queensland Inc.
Unit 6/56 Charles Street, Aitkenvale
Telephone: (07) 4725 5990
Fax: (07) 4725 5996
Welcome to yet another packed edition of Willing and Able for 2014! In this issue we have a welcome to VNQ's new Community Educator/Coordinator, as well as information on training workshops and National Volunteer Week, which is coming up fast. We also have details of 3 conferences, changes to the road rules and free training for volunteer tutors, as well as a call for programs and services and don't miss the marshmallow recipe on page 7. There's also an NBN Switch Off reminder as well as 2 community info sheets from the VCRCG, while this issue's Resources section ranges from Indigenous aged care complaint resources to photography tips and volunteering research digests. All this and more, including all of our usual sections, inside!
So hold on to your hats and buckle up for this edition of Willing and Able!
Credit where credit is due. Most of the information on the website and in this newsletter wouldn't be possible without the help of all the organisations who send VNQ information about special events or new resources that they want known. Thank you, all!
A special thanks to everyone who contributed articles especially written for this issue.
'Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.'
'Books can be dangerous. The best ones should be labelled "This could change your life."'
"A volunteer is a person who is a light to others, giving witness in a mixed-up age, doing well and willingly the tasks at hand - namely, being aware of another's needs and doing something about it."
"Volunteers do not necessarily have the time; they just have the heart."
Volunteer Managers Network Meeting & Training Session
Here are the details for the next Volunteer Managers Network Meeting & Training Sessions.
Please RSVP to:
VNQ's Networking meetings are held bi-monthly and are a great opportunity for people in the community sector to meet each other, network and share their experiences, knowledge and learning. Attendees can suggest topics for discussion, guests or issues.
For more information, please contact VNQ on:
VNQ would like to say welcome to our new Community Educator/Coordinator Kimberley Wilson. We look forward to working with her.
If you would like to discuss any of your community eduction/training needs with Kimberley please contact:
Email: email@example.com or
Updating Contact Details
If your organisation changes contact details or postal address, please let VNQ know, so we can update our records and keep in contact with you. Thank you.
To update details, contact VNQ on:
2014 is proving to be yet another exciting year.
Firstly, I am delighted to welcome our New Community Educator/Coordinator, Kimberley Wilson. Kimberley brings a wealth of community education and development to VNQ. If you wish to discuss your organisation's training needs, please contact Kimberley at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks to Bill Simpkins and our talented team of referral officers, the review of our volunteer referral process has resulted in a more streamlined and time effective process which will enable us to spend more time to identify needs and offer a more personalised recruitment support. An added bonus is that, as we have virtually gone paper free, we are more environmentally friendly. Our next step will be to consult with you, our members and friends, to see how we can meet your volunteer linking needs.
As well as day-to-day activities we continue to review policies and procedures in response to new legislative requirements, such as the Anti -Bullying Laws and the new privacy legislation.
On a more celebratory note, the 25th anniversary of Volunteer Week is fast approaching. We are just putting the finishing touches to our program of community events for the week, but can confirm activities will include a Volunteer Manager's Network Meeting on May 15 and a Lunch Box "Volunteer Stories" sharing session at Townsville Library on Tuesday, May 13. If you haven't planned an activity we invite you to celebrate with us.
VNQ is blessed with a wonderful team of talented and enthusiastic volunteers and I thank each and every one of you for your dedication and support.
If you have any queries or would like to learn more about how to become a member of VNQ, please feel free to contact our office. We are here to support you in your volunteering needs and welcome your enquiries or feedback.
"I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do."
TRAINING & DEVELOPMENT
Core 2014 Training Program
Community Skilling Saturday Series
March 01 - Submission Writing
More details & training will be announced through the year on VNQ's Website - Training page.
Bookings Essential - limited places
For details or bookings contact:
Australian Learning Communities Network Regional Conference
Theme: Communities Learning Together
For practitioners and community members with an interest in learning, training and community education and development.
Program includes speakers, panel discussions and workshops.
Registrations are now open.
Full details and registration on the website.
Free Training for Volunteer Tutors
TAFE Qld English Language & Literacy Services (TELLS) is offering free online training for volunteer tutors from community organisations.
Next course commences May 05.
Registration required by April 29.
Limited places - early registration advised.
For more details or to register, contact:
INFO FROM AROUND THE SECTOR
Call for Programs & Services
The Australian Human Rights Commission is developing a list of programs & services that assist people with disability in the criminal justice system.
Find out more & register your program or service on the website.
Changes to Road Rules
Several changes have been made to Queensland's road rules, to increase road safety for cyclists.
The changes are:
These changes are in effect as of April 07, 2014.
Visit the Qld Government's website for more details.
National Volunteer Week - 12-18 May
National Volunteer Week 2014 marks the 25th Anniversary of National Volunteer Week. The theme "Celebrate the Power of Volunteering" highlights the power of volunteers and volunteering in Australia to make changes, and improve people's lives.
You are invited to join this year's celebration by adopting the theme to thank the some six million volunteers who do so much to provide us all with the lifestyle we enjoy.
You don't have to do anything grand or fancy to celebrate. A simple morning tea or heartfelt thank you will be just as much appreciated by your volunteers. Some simple, cost effective ways to join the celebration could be to hold a morning tea for your volunteers with a presentation of certificates of appreciation. Perhaps you could even join up with a like minded organisation. If you are on Facebook or have a web page, post thanks to your volunteers highlighting their achievements.
We are in the process of planning our celebration and would love to hear from you so we can post your celebrations on our own website and Facebook page.
Volunteering Australia will soon be launching a range of products to support the week. These will include:
Find these resources and general NVW information on Volunteering Australia's website.
NVW Lapel Pins
Lapel pins for National Volunteer Week 2014 are now available for purchase from Volunteering Australia in partnership with Beyond Bank Australia.
Cost: $1.50 per pin
Limited Numbers - order early and don't miss out!
Order from the Volunteering Australia web site at:
NBN Switch off Reminder
The first home phone and internet services are scheduled to be switched off and replaced by the NBN fibre network, from May 23, 2014. This will be in parts of Aitkenvale and Mundingburra (Townsville).
Several other areas in Townsville are scheduled to be switched off from May 29, 2015, however NBNCo are advising people in those areas to make the switch to the NBN as soon as possible.
Even if you don't need or want an Internet service, you still need to switch to the NBN network if you want a landline telephone. If you don't make the switch, you will lose your phone service when the existing telephone network is turned off.
To make the switch to the NBN:
If you want to keep using your existing telephone number, but want to switch service providers, let your preferred provider know and they can make arrangements for that, also.
Full details are on the website, or contact:
For an Interpreter, Ph: 131 450 - TIS National and ask for the NBN Co Contact Centre.
New Version of Microsoft Computer Phone Scam
In a previous issue, one of my editorials focused on a scam where people were being called by someone claiming to be from Microsoft, about a problem with their computer. SCAMwatch and Telstra are warning people that there's a new version of this scam out.
The new version has the caller claiming to be from Telstra and calling about a problem with either the person's computer, or their Internet connection.
To report if you get this call:
See the website for more details on this new version.
Volunteer Community Recovery Coordination Group
Emergency Kit Information
As happens every wet season in North Queensland, it becomes a period of concerted effort for all levels of Government and other bodies to ensure our community is aware of what is need to be done 'before, during and after' cyclones , floods and storm tidal surges.
VCRCG I guess is no different to the above bodies, except we try to get the information directly to our members in such a way that it can be easily placed on work notice boards and included in new letters.
The basic emergency kit should be available at all times. Special items can be added when the (wet) cyclone season approaches, or an emergency warning is issued.
Consider what should be always in the kit, such as small and cheap items like can openers: what can be added at the start of the cyclone season and removed after, such as tin and dehydrated foods: and what is added only when an actual emergency threatens, such as clothing and documents.
NOTE: assume that the emergency kit will be used in your own home, where you may still have access to many necessities. Assume also that there won't be electricity or piped gas supplies and that piped water may either not be available or contaminated. Expect that there may be damage to the house.
It can not be stressed enough, the importance that each household and business gives to pre-disaster preparation and acting on the advice that is given in before, during and after disasters.
Storm Surge Information
We hear or read during times of Cyclones about 'Storm Surges'. So what is a Storm Surge and how could these things affect us as a coastal community?
A Storm Surge is a raised dome of sea water, up to 80km across and between 2 to 5 metres above normal sea level. The domes (Storm Surge), is caused by a cyclone as it moves and can have a major impact on coastal residents.
Many in our communities focus on the actual cyclone and its destructive winds but few give any thought to the other danger, the storm surge.
A storm surge can hit a coastal area much like a rapidly rising tide and can be extremely dangerous and destructive. The waves and seawater can move inland quite quickly, damaging buildings, flooding low lying areas, drowning crops and lawns with salt water and most importantly cutting off community escape routes.
The effects and damage of a storm surge can be amplified if the surge strikes the coast on high tied. If the surge hits on a medium or low tide there may still be some community impact but fortunately to a lesser degree.
Residents in low-lying coastal areas should familiarise themselves with the effect a storm surge would have on their properties and escape routes.
Local councils have maps showing which areas are susceptible to storm surges. These maps identify four evacuation zone colours, Red, Orange, Yellow and Blue along with suggested evacuation routes.
It could be too late to start researching your surge situation with a cyclone approaching. The mind set. "It won't happen to me" has been proven to be so dangerous over the last several years because as we have seen it does happen and only mother nature known when.
Information that will assist you prepare for storm surge can be found at:
Community Info is also available on VCRCG's website at: www.volunteeringnthqld.org.au/vcrcg.htm
Aged Care Complaints Resources
A range of new resources have been developed to assist elderly Indigenous people with communicating and resolving their aged care concerns.
These resources are being issued to aged care services and organisations working with older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. They will assist these organisations to converse with their elderly clients, their friends and family on the support available for them to resolve concerns about their aged care services, and the importance of raising those concerns.
The resources include a fact sheet, brochure and flip chart and include translated content in Torres Strait Islander Creole, Arrernte, Pitjantjatjara, Warlpiri, Alyawarra and Luritja.
Full details on these new resources are available at:
The ABC website has a section devoted to stories, tips and much more, all submitted by regular people. They recently had a theme of ways to improve photography, video and audio recording skills.
Among the tips shared is '40 tips to better photos' by ABC Open Producer, Lisa Clarke.
Whether you're a keen photographer, or just want to know how to improve your holiday or family photos, these useful and practical tips might help you.
The tips are available on the ABC Open's website at:
Volunteering Victoria's Research Digests
These Digests provide information on volunteering research and analysis from various reputable places.
Read them on Volunteering Victoria's website at:
Bombo the Wonder Dog
VNQ are supporting our volunteer Suzi Vincent's fundraising venture to raise money for Legacy by selling the delightful children's book her husband, Tony, created during the last weeks of his life.
Tony died from metastatic melanoma originating from naval service during the Vietnam War. As a side affect, in the last six weeks of his life, he experienced heightened creativity due to changes in the brain: so began the adventures of Bombo the Wonder Dog.
Bombo, who resembles the family dog, is a very smart black dog. He has the kind of adventures that children and the young at heart dream of. Among other things he goes on a secret mission in nuclear submarine, a train trip in New South Wales and a plane ride over Antarctica - with 10% discount for other dogs!
Suzi and her children have lovely memories of this special time with Tony as he entertained them daily with Bombo's adventures. They are hoping to share some of them with you whilst at the same time supporting Legacy.
Bombo the Wonder Dog is a lovely story with many forms of transport throughout the book as they were Tony's (and Bombo's) passion. The book also carries a strong theme about caring for others and making people happy. It is suitable for boys and girls from pre-school age to lower primary school level, but everyone will enjoy it.
The book is beautifully illustrated in high gloss.
Email: email@example.com or
Please include your address and phone number if emailing orders.
Gold Coast Conferences
23rd International Association for Volunteer Effort - World Volunteer Conference
The National Standards for best practice in management of volunteers is available for free download from the Volunteering Australia Website.
I recently came across an Internet link that I thought might be of interest to some of this newsletter's readers.
It was a link to Getty Publications' Virtual Library.
This virtual library is part of the Getty Museum and contains over 250 art books available for download, free. It's a real treasure trove for art lovers, covering all types of art styles and movements. Many of the books are hard to find in real life, being out of print.
Whether you have an interest in art or are looking for research material, you might find something of use or interest there.
See you all next issue!
Around this time every year, kitchen shops display a range of various sized egg and bunny moulds. These moulds can be filled with chocolate or marshmallow, or a crisp chocolate shell with a marshmallow centre is a tasty treat that kids love (and adults too!).
Here is the marshmallow recipe I use whenever I make marshmallow bunnies. I hope you like it!
Simple Marshmallow Recipe
Making Your Marshmallow:
Tips, Tricks and Variations:
Be sure to keep your marshmallow cool after making it. Hot weather is not kind to marshmallow.
Complaints - Ph: 1300 362 072;
Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman
Toll Free: 1800 062 058
ALL OMBUDSMAN SERVICES ARE FREE
Anti-Discrimination Commission Queensland
Dispute Resolution Service
Office of Fair Trading - Qld Government
Don't forget VNQ's website is filled with information and links to all sorts of valuable resources.
Updated weekly - Special Events Page
Updated every issue - Newsletter Page
Updated recently - Training Page
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To subscribe to this bi-monthly newsletter contact:
For information on special events in the local area, visit the Townsville Community Calendar, brought to you by the wonderful volunteers at the Community Information Centre.
Or visit the Special Events page on the VNQ website.
Disclaimer: Whilst every care has been made to ensure the accuracy of this information, VNQ takes no responsibility for any error, omission or other mistake. Information is correct as of the date of printing. Contact organisations concerned for further details.