Pam Dalrymple plans to continue volunteering at one of her local aged care communities “as long as they’ll have me”.
The 79-year-old has been helping to support seniors living at the Carinity Clifford House residential aged care community in Brisbane for the past 18 years.
Speaking on the eve of International Volunteer Day on 5 December, Pam said she first visited the seniors’ home to sing to residents – and always longed to return more frequently.
“I used to sing in a choir called The Crusade Choir and we would visit nursing homes and churches and sing the gospel. We would visit places like Clifford House every weekend,” Pam said.
“I always thought that when I retired, I would love to do volunteer work. I wanted to work with older folk when I had the time and as the choir often sang at Clifford House, I thought that would be a good place to start.”
Pam commenced as a valued volunteer at Carinity Clifford House in 2003. Each Wednesday she enjoys assisting the diversion therapists, playing piano for Devotions and sing-a-longs, or helping wherever needed.
Whether it’s aiding with activities, making residents coffees, or simply chatting with them, Pam finds much value in simple acts of kindness.
“It has been a privilege to volunteer. If you can help folk a little it means them a lot to them. Some residents don’t have relatives so to be able to talk with them and bring a smile to their face is wonderful,” Pam said.
Pam has also volunteered at the Golden Years Seniors Centre in Nundah, was involved with the Clayfield Every Girls’ Rally for over 39 years, has served as pianist/organist for Clayfield Gospel Hall, and held committee roles with The Crusade Choir over 31 years.
In 2014, she was recognised for her volunteer work in her neighbourhood, awarded a Medal of the Order of the Australia for “service to the community, particularly through aged welfare.”
“You don’t do these things for awards, you do it to honour the Lord. It’s just nice to think you can help and it feels good to make someone’s day a bit nicer,” Pam aid.
Anyone interested in volunteering to assist Carinity and the people we support can visit the Carinity website or phone 07 3550 3737.