Giving your time to help other people is one of the most rewarding things you can do. Volunteering can also help you build new skills and meet new people.
Volunteer roles at Council
Many of the services we provide rely on the support of volunteers.
Watch the video below to hear from some of the great people who volunteer their time in different ways.
Please note, for some volunteer roles we may ask for a Police check or a Working With Children check.
Wollongong Art Gallery has volunteers who work in many art-related areas, such as:
- Gallery guides
- Front of house and administration
- Installing exhibitions
- Workshop assistants
Email the Gallery or call them on (02) 4227 8500 to find out more.
Community Transport: Wollongong-Shellharbour provides transport to keep people moving and connected in the community. Volunteer roles include:
- Bus drivers. Drive one of our 22-25 seat buses for community or social groups, including our regular weekend excursions. A Light Rigid (LR) licence or higher is essential.
- Health bus drivers. Drive one of our 12-seat vehicles, picking up people from the Wollongong and Shellharbour areas and taking them to medical appointments.
- Individual drivers. Drive your own car to transport people living in your local area to medical and other appointments and activities.
We also have roles for people to support Community Transport customers to access our buses and while they are travelling. This includes helping people onto and off our buses and having a chat.
Our volunteers take part in support, training and volunteer meetings. We also provide reimbursement for out-of-pocket expenses.
All Community Transport volunteers must have a Police Check. We will arrange this at no cost to you. Drivers are required to undergo additional checks before driving with us.
If you have questions or want to join the Community Transport volunteer team, email or call us on (02) 4227 7111.
If you love being outdoors, sustainability or working with plants, one of our environment volunteer roles could be perfect for you.
- Bushcare has more than 60 groups across our city working to regenerate natural areas.
- Dunecare volunteers work on beach dunes to manage plants and keep them free of weeds and rubbish.
- Fiready is a volunteer program that clears potential bush fire fuel near residential areas.
- Friends of Wollongong Botanic Garden work in many different ways to support the Garden and its conservation work.
- Greenhouse Park is a former builders’ tip just south of Wollongong that has been turned into an eco-park.
- Indian Myna Bird Action Program volunteers help to control an urban pest that threatens native birds and animals.
- Picitup Program volunteers collect rubbish in their own time from public areas and record what they find to help us fight littering.
- Rise and Shine is a long-running environmental campaign with volunteering opportunities like planting, weeding and cleaning up natural areas.
If you're part of a community or corporate group, and are interested in getting a team together to take part in one of these programs, call us on (02) 4227 7111.
Many of our community events have a broad range of volunteer roles.
Volunteering is a great way to get an introduction to event management, and to see some of your favourite events from behind the scenes.
Some of our regular events that welcome volunteers include:
- Comic Gong
- Wollongong Living Books
- New Year’s Eve
- Viva la Gong
Email us or call (02) 4227 7111 if you’d like to volunteer at a Council event.
Volunteers are welcome to join our Community Partnerships program and help remove illegal graffiti on non-Council buildings. People taking part will remove graffiti from publicly accessible land only. No ladders, climbing or high-pressure equipment is involved.
You can join this program as an individual, or as a community group.
We’ll provide graffiti removal training and equipment to help with removal.
To take part or for more information, email us or call (02) 4227 7111.
Wollongong City Libraries have volunteers who work in areas such as:
- Home Library Service
- Adult events and programs
- Tech Savvy sessions
- Children’s and youth programs
- Local Studies
- One-off promotions and events
- Comic Gong.
Drop into a library branch, our visit the libraries' website to find out more.
Dedicated volunteers help to care for some of the general and historic cemeteries across our city.
For more information, visit the Wollongong Memorial Gardens website or call (02) 4227 7780.
Our Social Support Services programs keep older people connected to their communities.
By volunteering, you can make a difference to someone's life and help those who feel isolated. Social Support volunteering is great for people who love to chat and socialise, either one-on-one or in groups.
Some of the volunteer roles with our Social Support Services team include:
- Individual Support. Provide one-on-one support through home visits for chat or a cup of tea, or sharing a hobby like knitting or playing cards. Other activities can include taking someone out in the community for a walk, to the shops, a movie, or a café for a coffee and cake. Volunteers are individually matched to people for activities and in-home support.
- Bus Support. Assist people on and off the buses that pick them up from their homes to take them on social outings and activities. You'll provide social interaction on the bus and at the venue or destination, and may also assist with things like carrying food and beverages or helping to read a menu.
- Social Group Support. Help organise social group activities, set up the space, assist in the kitchen to make a meal, socialise and chat with the people at our social group events.
- Men's Shed. Provide woodwork project assistance to men attending the at the shed, as well as helping out with special activities such as BBQs and bus trips. Full training on the machinery and inductions are provided.
- Men’s Shed Bus Support. Assist on the bus that picks up Men’s Shed participants from their homes and drops them off after the day has finished. You'll help them on and off the bus, and provide social interaction and woodwork project support at the Shed.
All Social Support volunteers must have an Aged / Children / Disabled / Vulnerable Police Check. We will arrange this at no cost to you. We also provide reimbursement for out-of-pocket expenses.
If you have questions or want to join our Social Support volunteer team, email or call us on (02) 4227 7111.
Our Support for Carers Flexible Respite program provides respite for carers of people aged 65 or over (care recipients). Volunteers provide individualised support depending on the carer's needs, interests and situation.
Some of the roles for our Flexible Respite volunteers include:
- One-on-one support either at the carer's home or in the community. Volunteers can interact with care recipients while their carers attend appointments, or accompany carers and care recipients on shopping trips or other social activities. Volunteers are individually matched to people for activities and in-home support.
- Bus support and social interaction for carers and care recipients on bus trips and at the destination.
- Support at social events such as lunches. Volunteers support carers to build their networks and share experiences with others.
All Flexible Respite volunteers must have an Aged / Children / Disabled / Vulnerable Police Check. We will arrange this at no cost to you. On-going support, training and volunteer meetings are provided. We also offer reimbursement for out-of-pocket expenses.
If you have questions or want to join our Flexible Respite volunteer team, email or call us on (02) 4227 7111.
Volunteers in our Living Books program share their interesting life stories with other people in group conversations.
Wollongong Volunteering Expo
We coordinate the annual Wollongong Volunteering Expo, which is usually held in May to coincide with National Volunteers week.
The 2023 Wollongong Volunteering Expo will be held on Wednesday 17 May.
The expo is a great opportunity to learn about a wide range of not-for-profit organisations, meet other volunteers, and learn how you can get involved.
If you are part of a community group or not-for-profit organisation in the Wollongong region, and would like to have a stall at the Expo, please email us for more information and a registration form.
Volunteering Illawarra has permanently closed
We would like to thank everyone who has contributed to Volunteering Illawarra over the years, including our staff, volunteers and community organisations.
Please visit the NSW Centre for Volunteering website to search for local volunteering opportunities and find resources for volunteers.
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