As we get close to the summer holidays, many people are wrapping up at work and looking forward to some well earned time off and connection with close friends and family.
At Orange Sky, our main aim at this time is to operate as consistently as possible so our friends know that the free laundry and showers and, even more importantly, a friendly yarn will be there. Nic and I both know that services can drop off over the holidays, and our friends can feel even more isolated and disconnected from the community than throughout the year.
When we first started Orange Sky, it was just Nic, myself and a few friends and family members supporting the operation. We didn’t really even think of it as‘volunteering’ – it was just about getting out to do something we thought would help people doing it tough.
We now understand the power of volunteeringand the dual role it plays in not only helping our friends on the street, but also the volunteers themselves.We have heard so many amazing stories from our volunteers that highlight the well-being, as well as sense of belonging, that volunteering provides them.
In 2010, 36.2% of people aged 18+(6.1 million) had volunteered.
In 2010, formal volunteering(excluding travel) was worth $25.4 billion to the Australian economy.
96% of volunteers say that it“makes people happier.”
Sustained volunteering is associated with better mental health.
Over the last few months, I have cometo know one of our friends, Ros, really well. I have had many conversations with her about her life and how she came to use the Orange Sky service. She is an amazing women that has been regularly coming to Orange Sky shifts for over three years. She now provides support for fellow friends through a simple thing like a conversation.I think she really embodies our mission to Positively Connect Communities.
I would encourage you to listen to her story and please consider whether you may be able to support our friends like Ros these holidays.
Any support you can give would assist us in offering a reliable service that provides our friends with a place to feel welcome over the holidays.
I want to wish all of our supporters a safe and happy holiday period and an amazing new year ahead.
A special shout out to everyone that contributes to keeping our vans on the road – we are continually blown away by the passion of our volunteers and their willingness to give up time to support our friends. Also to our incredible donors, who believe in our mission and help keep our washers spinning and showers flowing. If you’d like to make a donation and support our friends these holidays, please click on the button below.
Thank you so much for your support.
Support our friends on the street this holiday period