Richard Court

Richard Court


    Western Australia gearing up for the International Year of Volunteers in 2001

    5/12/2000 11:16 AM

    Premier Richard Court says the State Government will make a concerted effort to help Western Australia’s public sector employees play a volunteer role in the community as part of the International Year of Volunteers in 2001.

    Mr Court said the Ministry of the Premier and Cabinet was developing a strategy to increase volunteerism within its own ranks and Ministers would be encouraging Chief Executive Officers from the agencies they were responsible for to look at ways of encouraging and assisting volunteer effort.

    “The way this could be achieved may vary - for example, there may be scope for some agencies to allow employees a specific amount of time off during the International Year to participate in a worthwhile volunteer activity or the agency may itself ‘adopt’ a specific volunteer project,” Mr Court said.

    “There are already tens of thousands of public sector employees who play a volunteer role in our community - we want to encourage that and get others `on board’.”

    Mr Court said there were more than 260,000 volunteers providing 46 million hours of community service in Western Australia each year.

    “The success of the Olympic and Paralympic Games has focussed attention on the importance of volunteers and I believe the International Year of Volunteers will lift the overall awareness and appreciation of the contribution of volunteers and the way they help build stronger communities,” the Premier said.

    “The work they do is summed up by the slogan which has been adopted for the International Year, ‘Volunteers - The Spirit of Community’.”

    Mr Court said the Lotteries Commission would provide almost $500,000 for a range of initiatives for the International Year of Volunteers, including:
    • a conference in August next year to develop a vision for volunteering in WA;
    • a grants program to support volunteering projects;
    • a mobile service to encourage volunteering in local communities; and -
    • a volunteering photographic display.

    “The International Year of Volunteers will provide the perfect vehicle to encourage more Western Australians to become inspired to make a contribution as a volunteer to our community,” Mr Court said.

    Media contact: Casey Cahill 9222 9475