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Our volunteers are our lifeblood


Pauline and Red Cross volunteer Jasmine catch up weekly to chat, read the paper and work on a tapestry. They were introduced through MATES, a Red Cross program, which reconnects socially isolated people to their community though regular companionship and support.

Every day at Red Cross we see the incredible contribution of volunteers and the difference they make in their communities. Volunteers help people to improve their lives. They strengthen communities to be more supportive, connected and inclusive.

On International Volunteer Day (5 December) - and every other day - we say a big thank you to our volunteers for everything they do.

Australian Red Cross has over 34,000 volunteers who are building stronger communities here at home, and internationally.

Meet our volunteers

Every day, volunteers in Australia work across our programs, from making daily telephone calls to older people living alone to participating in our Young Humanitarian activities.

Researcher Julie Scott-Stevenson, supported by Red Cross, has captured their personal motivations and experiences. Watch personal accounts from our volunteers.

For our volunteers in Kenya, a day's work could be helping children with autism to succeed at school, advocating against gender-based violence, or even coaching a cricket game for street kids. Take a look at a day in the life of our volunteers.

Volunteering is in our DNA

Voluntary service is embedded in our organisation. It is one of our seven fundamental principles and volunteers have been at the core of the International Red Cross Red Crescent Movement since it was first conceived of in 1859 after the battle of Solferino in Italy, when Red Cross founder Henri Dunant mobilised local people to attend to sick and wounded soldiers.

We are grateful for the thousands of people across the country who volunteer their time, skills and energy to help Red Cross and the broader community. You make the world a better place!

Voluntary Service Strategy

In 2012, Australian Red Cross undertook a project to reinvigorate our commitment to voluntary service. The Voluntary Service Strategy is the result of a nationwide consultation and research project with staff, volunteers and members.

At Australian Red Cross we have over 34,000 volunteers, of which 81% are female and almost 50% are of 55 years of age or more.

Our new strategy is aimed at strengthening the importance of voluntary service and ensuring that Red Cross clearly positions itself to meet the humanitarian needs of the future.

Our vision: inspire people to volunteer

The strategy seeks to inspire people to take humanitarian action and contribute to building stronger, interconnected individuals and communities through voluntary service.


Give the gift of time

Volunteer in Australia

Join thousands of people around Australia by becoming a Red Cross volunteer. Find out how »

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