It’s National Volunteer Week (May 18-24) and this year the theme is “Changing Communities. Changing Lives”.
On behalf of the committee at Harbour City Bears I’d like to take a moment to recognise the ways that our volunteers change our Bear community and the lives of our members and guests.
For those of you I haven’t met: I’m Zoo, the newest Harbour City Bears committee member and volunteer co-ordinator. I’ve been kicking around the club on and off since the early 2000s, and became more involved again a couple of years ago.
Firstly, a big bear hug to all of the volunteers who have helped out over the past 25 years of HCB, and particularly those who made my first six months in this role go pretty smoothly. Your generosity, graciousness, and good humour was vital to the success of Bear Essentials 24, our regular Kinselas den night, and other events during this time. Without our volunteers we couldn’t have: handed out raffle tickets, run coat checks, done décor, collected door tickets, bumped in and out of parties, created our Mardi Gras parade entry, blown up all those inflatables for the pool party, transported and stored stuff we needed for events, had access to a boat for the beach trip, and so much more.
As well as the purely practical side of helping our events run, our volunteers also provided many a smile and laugh and chat, and gone out of their way to make these spaces friendly and welcoming.
I’d like to acknowledge that all of the committee are volunteers too, and also raise a glass to our partners and families who put up with us all being quite distracted and unavailable at times (especially at Mardi Gras and Bear Pride periods). Some of our events also act as fundraisers for charities (like Twenty10 (https://www.twenty10.org.au/), and so benefit the broader LGBTIQA+ community too.
We are currently updating our volunteer list and rostering system, and having a think about how we can all work together to better utilise the talents, passion, care, and imagination of our members.
If you would like to register as a volunteer, have ideas for how we could improve our processes or add to the scope of what volunteers do, or want more information you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or join the HCB Volunteer FB page
Harbour City Bears Committee member and Volunteer Coordinator
Kevin HuntTevin PriceDale ApplePeter Conway