Vic has been a volunteer with us for a little under a year and is an absolute super star!
Here's a bit of her ERCSA journey.
Why did you start volunteering with camps? (What/who motivated you?
I was introduced to ERCSA in high school. A few friends used to volunteer in January and always seemed to have a great time and return for more. When I started uni I began volunteering at a school tutoring program for refugees and helped out on another organisation's kids camp. When in second year, my friend suggested we give ERCSA a go I was keen to jump on board after years of intending to do so. I had really enjoyed working with kids who needed a bit of a leg-up, and after the Summer Camps Launch in December 2017, ERCSA seemed like a great opportunity to continue doing that. On reflection, it's exceeded all expectations and I plan to volunteer on many future camps.
What is your favourite memory from your ERCSA journey?
On the April weekend camp earlier this year, a few local high school students hosted a football clinic. At one point I was helping on the 'goal kicking' station and noticed one of the quieter boys pick up a ball. From the looks of things, he had never had the opportunity to practice footy skills, but before long a group of volunteers and campers were encouraging him as he learnt to kick. I will never forget the smile on his face as the ball crossed the goal line. While only a short moment in the scheme of things, it's memories like this that make it all worth it.
What has being an ERCSA volunteer done for you?
The thing I love about ERCSA is how it not only focuses on supporting the kids, but also the volunteers. Working with the campers is no doubt the main reason us volunteers are present, and working with them is certainly one of the most rewarding aspects. However, I really enjoy how all the volunteers get opportunities to reflect along the way. It helps me grow as a person but equally helps us support one another and form close friendships. Collectively, we become better volunteers to best support the kids. If you've ever thought about joining us on a camp and hesitated, I would highly recommend! Yes, you may face challenges and require a full day to catch up on sleep post-camp. But, it is one of the most welcoming and rewarding experiences on record and I would have started earlier if I had known just how good they would be!