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Josephine Ng

Josephine Ng is a young volunteer with a passion for sport. Working with like-minded people that want to work together to help others. This is her story.

One reason I was motivated to make a difference through volunteering was because I wanted to share my passion for helping others.  Another reason was the opportunity to be able to give back to the local community and have the ability to combine that with my passion for sport.

For me personally, my most favourite opportunity so far would have to be volunteering at the Sydney Sevens last year. It was a sold out event, Allianz Stadium filled with spectators throughout the tournament weekend. It was also an event that was broadcast globally. Bill Pulver (former CEO of Rugby Australia) described it as “the best run event on the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series”.

I just obtained my officiating accreditation for athletics so I’m looking forward to being involved in volunteering from the perspective of an official in the upcoming summer season. I’m also looking forward to challenging myself, as this is a form of volunteering that I have not yet explored.

The biggest challenge that is faced in relation to volunteering is recruitment and retention of volunteers, particularly young volunteers.  A friend mentioned to me that volunteering is not perceived as an area in which young people tend to be involved in and when they do get involved they are greeted with an “oh wow!” which can be taken as condescending or sarcastic.

A common misconception about young volunteers is that they only volunteer because they are required to in order to obtain course credits. Even though some young people get involved simply because they want to help make a difference, a consequence of these misconceptions is that it may deter further participation.

I have also recently applied to become a Justice of the Peace (JP). I’m hoping that I will be successful in being appointed so that I will be able to help more people in the local community and help address the increase in demand for JPs.

My advice to other young people would be to grasp every opportunity, as they may never come again and you won’t know whether or not you like something until you try it.

Don’t let misconceptions and stereotypes hold you back or deter you from doing something that you are genuinely passionate about.