Volunteer to make a difference in the cancer fight

Wednesday 21 January, 2009

Cancer Council Victoria is calling on Melbourne locals to help run its major fundraising events by volunteering to take calls from supporters on its Supporters Hotline.

The service, run by dedicated and enthusiastic volunteers, takes calls from the Victorian public about ways they can support Cancer Council fundraising events, as well as taking valuable donations.

"66 Victorians are diagnosed with cancer everyday, and we get thousands of calls each year from people wanting to make a difference," Cancer Council spokesperson Nicola Kaufman said.

"The support we get from the public is fantastic, but we need volunteers to help us answer these calls to help people register for our fundraising events and raise valuable funds - just one day a week can be a great help," she said.

One person who knows what it's like to volunteer on the Supporters Hotline is Hayley Ferguson, who has been volunteering regularly for the past four months.

"I really enjoy my time in the Supporters Hotline. Not only is the work stimulating, I've also made wonderful friends with my fellow volunteers - it's a very social environment," Ms Ferguson said.

"You also get to hear some amazing stories - just recently I spoke to a woman who planned to shave off her waist-length hair to raise funds," she said.

Volunteers on the Supporters Hotline are given full training, and are not expected to have specialist skills.

"We're just looking for sociable people who have basic computer skills, and are available to come to our Cancer Council offices on a weekly basis," Ms Kaufman said.

"If you're happy to take calls from our supporters and look up information on computers, then we would love to hear from you. Volunteering is a great way to make friends for life, so why not get involved and reap the benefits?" she said.

The Supporters Hotline is a crucial service for the Cancer Council and plays an important role in helping the Cancer Council raise more than $32 million each year.

If you want to make a difference by volunteering on the Cancer Council's Supporters Hotline, please call Carolyn Butcher on 9635 5235 or email carolyn.butcher@cancervic.org.au