Finding Meaning Through Volunteering Brings Mental Health Rewards

A new video has been released in the ‘Words to Live By’ series – a special collection of videos which give life lessons on the mental health benefits of keeping active, belonging to your community, and committing to something meaningful.

Words to Live By showcases the inspiring stories of senior Western Australians whose lives encapsulate the power of the Act Belong Commit mental health message.

The new video focuses on our very own volunteer Shelley McGinn, a former teacher who emigrated from England, who now lives in Wanneroo and has thrown herself into volunteering at Spring Hill Primary School in Tapping.

Shelley’s volunteering efforts are coordinated by EdConnect Australia, and she joins the 1,334 skilled volunteers who help over 13,000 students in classrooms across Australia.

Each year we survey our volunteers on the personal benefits of their volunteering. It comes as no surprise that an overwhelming majority of our volunteers (85%) believe their volunteering “has enhanced their mental health and wellbeing” while 86% said it helped them “feel more connected to their community”.

Shelley is a testament to the power of intergenerational relationships and the mental health benefits they provide. “Coming back into schools has enlivened me. It’s given me another reason to be. I don’t have children myself, so it fills in very nicely for me where children might have been in my life.”

“It was the principles of Act Belong Commit, particularly belonging to a community that made me think that EdConnect would be good for me, and another area in which I could give.”

“If you’re thinking of becoming a volunteer, just do it. There are so many benefits to you, and to the children that you will encounter.”

To express your interest in volunteering with us click here or call 1800 668 550.

The evidence-based Act Belong Commit campaign is a comprehensive, population wide, community-based preventive mental health promotion campaign that is directed by Curtin University’s Mentally Healthy WA and is funded by Healthway and the Mental Health Commission. For more information go to:

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