EPC (Eastern Palliative Care Assoc. Inc.) is the largest provider of community-based palliative care services in Victoria, and offers a range of free-of-charge support programs to support people experiencing terminal illnesses and their carers and families. Our service is available to anyone with complex palliative care needs living in Boroondara, Manningham, Maroondah, Monash, Whitehorse, Knox and Yarra Ranges. We have a dedicated, highly respected and strong team of over 200 volunteers, who each have a vital role to play in our service delivery. They contribute thousands of hours each year and help us greatly improve the quality of services we provide to our clients. Our palliative care volunteers are accepted into people’s lives and homes at a time of huge emotional upheaval, crisis and vulnerability. EPC volunteers are involved in many different areas of our organisation, including companionship and respite, biography, accompanying people to medical appointments, bereavement support, dog walking and enrichment, administration and fundraising and even knitting, hairdressing and photography. Our volunteers are very highly valued and provided with extensive training, ongoing support and mentoring. At EPC, we know each and every one of our volunteers and consider them to be an integral part of our care team. Here are some of the things you will need to know if you are considering becoming a volunteer with EPC: • All our volunteer work is conducted during business hours. • Our volunteers need access to a car, their own driver’s licence, and access to a computer. • We try, where possible, to place volunteers with clients close to their local community. • Our volunteer biographers also need to have good word processing skills before applying. This includes things like inserting and manipulating pictures in a document and cutting and pasting. Good typing skills are also needed. • Many of our volunteers will have experienced bereavement. However, for people wishing to train with EPC in a client-focused volunteer role, a significant period of time must have passed since the death of a person they have been close to. We need to ensure our volunteers are in ‘the right place’ to take on what can be a very emotionally challenging, though fulfilling, role. Our introductory training for the Community and Biography Team volunteers is extensive and runs for one day per week throughout February and March each year. If you are interested in more information about training as an Eastern Palliative Care volunteer, please call our Volunteer Services department on 1300 130 813. We welcome volunteers from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, with good spoken English.
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