National Volunteer Week is a time to honour and appreciate the invaluable contributions made by our Club's volunteers who selflessly dedicate their time, skills, and passion to make a positive impact on our community. In the spirit of this special occasion, we are thrilled to present our volunteer interview series, where we delve into the remarkable stories of just some of the inspiring individuals who have chosen to make a difference.
We have interviewed JOE, now it's Isabelle's turn...
How has volunteering impacted your life, and what benefits have you experienced from it?
Before I was a PMLSC volunteer, I felt less confident with my leadership and speaking up, but starting lifesaving helped me in many ways, especially being able to make decisions, have a voice, and be a role model for younger kids. I have been able to socialise, make lots of new friends, learn about myself and discover how to handle all kinds of situations. Overall Lifesaving has been beneficial in terms of personal growth and development.
Can you share a specific moment or experience during your volunteer work that stands out to you and reinforces your love for volunteering and or the club?
Something that I remember is with the kids at nippers when they are scared to go in the water, I get to help, reassure and talk to them, what I love is within a short amount of time they feel more comfortable and pretty soon they are having a great time. This may seem like a small deal but for me, I feel like I have done something for them and maybe they will remember that. Also, I really enjoy it when the kids come down to the club outside of Nippers to go for a paddle, that's when I feel like a leader and a role model. There are many times I went out with some kids to the pole and taught them about the wind and how the current can push you out and why it’s important for them to be aware of that. Plus talking to them about jet skis and why they should stay around the pole to be safe.
What keeps you motivated to continue volunteering for PMLSC?
Something that keeps me motivated is the people that I get to see at the club, everyone’s the best, the support and friendliness around the club is really great, and everyone’s there to say "Hi", have a chat, and help you out when you need it. Not only this, but with all the training, events, and activities, it’s a lot of fun. For me, I enjoy learning about things like first aid, and saving lives as a whole is something that I find really interesting and getting to come to the beach every season is a really great opportunity. You really find yourself in a way that can lead you to many great friendships and further developments in life, the club has done a lot for so many people in so many different ways, I’m just grateful to be at the PMLSC and I’m definitely looking forward to working even harder, learning more advanced skills and doing what I can to be a supportive, friendly, fun, and inclusive member of the club. I want to achieve more and go to the best of my abilities and I’m looking forward to taking that up with me as I move higher up in life saving.
In your opinion, what makes volunteering such a valuable and rewarding experience, and how does it contribute to personal growth and development?
Volunteering is seriously one of the greatest things you can do in life. It's like a rollercoaster journey where you put yourself out there, and guess what? It's in those moments of vulnerability that you truly discover who you are as a person. You see how you handle all sorts of situations and learn from them.
Okay, picture this: you're out on patrol, facing challenges, and looking out for your community. It's a real opportunity to see what you're made of and how you react to different scenarios. And when you know you've done a good job and made a real difference, that's when you can pat yourself on the back and say, "Hey, I did good!"
But here's the crazy part: volunteering doesn't just impact how you look at life, it straight-up changes your whole perspective! Sometimes it's all about having a blast and enjoying the easy-going side of things. Other times, though, it's like you've jumped into this whirlpool of the unknown. You're not sure what's gonna happen, and it can get pretty tough and scary. You come face-to-face with fears and work your butt off, but guess what? It makes you stronger, inside and out. Volunteering ain't a walk in the park. Some days are long, and you got a lot on your plate. But at the end of it all, when you look back, it's totally worth it. You know deep down that you've made a real difference, not just for yourself but for others too.